Bideford A.F.C.

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Bideford
Official crest
Full name Bideford Association Football Club
Nickname(s) The Robins
Founded 1946
Ground The Sports Ground,
Bideford
Ground Capacity 2,000[1]
Chairman Roy Portch
Manager Sean William Joyce
League Southern Football League Premier Division
2014–15 Southern Football League
Premier Division, 15th

Bideford A.F.C. is an English non-league football club from Bideford, Devon that plays in the Southern Football League. The club is nicknamed "The Robins" due to their all-red strip. The club plays its home matches at The Sports Ground, Kingsley Road, Bideford. The club are currently members of the Southern Football League Premier Division.

History[edit]

Founded in 1946, Bideford A.F.C. has avoided relegation every year since the war, a distinction it shares only with Arsenal and Everton. The club played their first three seasons in the Exeter & East Devon League before joining the Western League in 1949.[2] Bideford had requested to the Western League to be elected to the Second Division, but this was denied and they had to start in Division Three instead. This was the only season the Western League ran a Third Division, and Bideford won it without losing a game. Two seasons in the 1951–52 season later they then won Division Two, and gained promotion to Division One.[3]

Bideford won the Western League three times before joining the Southern League in 1972. The club spent three seasons in the Southern league before the extra expense involved and increased travelling took its toll, forcing them to drop down back to the Western League. During their time in the Southern League, the club set an all-time FA Cup record, when in 1974–75 they played thirteen FA Cup games in a single season – as a result of playing numerous replays in qualifying rounds including needing five games to beat Falmouth Town and four more to beat Trowbridge Town in the next round.[4] With the subsequent abandonment of second and further replays, this record will never be beaten again. Two more Western League titles followed in the early 1980s, before a financial crisis hit the club. A re-formation took place in 1987, of the club leading to the current setup, a company limited by guarantee, under the revised company name Bideford AFC (1987) Ltd.[2]

Under the chairmanship of Jim McElwee, and then Paul Mitchell, the club won four more Western League titles since 2000, and have also made the FA Vase semi-finals, where they lost to Winchester City.[4] Despite winning the Western League four times, under Manager Sean Joyce, between 2000 to 2006, the club elected not to apply for promotion to the Southern League due to the amount of travelling and expense that would be involved in playing teams which, almost without exception, would be over 100 miles away.[2]

However after winning the Western League again for the 10th time in the 2009/10 season and winning the Devon St Lukes Bowl where they beat Exeter City 2–1 in the Final.[4][5] Bideford AFC accepted promotion to the Southern League in May 2010, joining Division One South & West. In their second season in Division One South & West the club gained promotion to the Southern League Premier Division as champions.[6]

Seasons[edit]

This is 5 recent Bideford seasons for a full history look List of Bideford A.F.C. seasons

Year League Lvl Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts Position Leading league scorer FA Cup FA Trophy Average home
attendance
Name Goals Res Rec Res Rec
2009–10 Western Football League
Premier Division
9 38 27 6 5 93 37 +56 87 1st of 20
Promoted
PR 1-0-1 -
2010–11 Southern Football League
Division One South & West
8 40 17 7 16 68 73 -5 58 10th of 21 EPR 0-0-1 QR3 3-0-1
2011–12 Southern Football League
Division One South & West
8 40 28 8 4 77 41 +36 92 1st of 21
Promoted
QR2 2-0-1 QR1 1-0-1
2012–13 Southern Football League
Premier Division
7 42 11 9 22 58 73 -15 42 20th of 22 Sean Downing 14 QR2 1-1-1 QR1 0-0-1 183
2013–14 Southern Football League
Premier Division
7 44 18 13 13 75 64 11 67 8th of 23 QR2 1-0-1 QR2 1-0-1 240
2014–15 Southern Football League
Premier Division
7 44 16 7 21 66 85 -19 55 15th of 23 Sean Downing 12 QR2 1-1-1 QR1 0-1-1 204

Ground[edit]

The Sports Ground

Bideford play their games at The Sports Ground, Kingsley Road, Bideford EX39 2LH.

Players[edit]

First-team squad[edit]

According to the official site.[7]

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Position Player
England GK Steve Oliver
England DF Danny Harrison
England DF Nick Milton
England DF Danny Tapp
England DF Nick Barker
England DF Ian Sampson
England DF Myles James
England DF Chris McGrath
England DF Matt Villis
England MF Sean Downing
England MF Ben Wood
No. Position Player
England MF Stephen Reed
England MF Micky Parcell (on loan from Torquay United)
England MF Richard Groves
England MF George Swain
England MF Craig Veal
England FW Kevin Squire
England FW Billy Tucker

Sponsorship[edit]

During the 2010/2011 season the first team were sponsored by Morrisons and in the 2011/2012 season by the Bideford & District Post, a local monthly newspaper; they are now sponsored by the Children's Hospice South West. The youth team has a number of clothing sponsors including Tesco and Sloman's removals.

Youth teams[edit]

At the start of the 2011/2012 season Bideford AFC launched 3 youth teams, an under 11s team, an under 13s team and an under 15s team. The youth teams play in the North Devon Youth League and train on the astro turf pitch at the nearby Bideford College.

Other teams[edit]

The club also has a reserve team who play in the Premier Division of the North Devon Football League. There is also an Academy team which was founded in 2014 who compete in the North Devon League . There is also a ladies team as well who play in the local Sunday league the chairwoman and manager is Vanessa Saunders.

Club officials[edit]

  • President: Jimmy McElwee
  • Honorary vice-president: Kevin Keegan
  • Chairman: Roy Portch
  • Directors: Ian Knight & Kevin Tyrell
  • Commercial Manager: Darren Hollyoak
  • Media Manager: Liam Curtis

First team

  • First team manager: Sean Joyce
  • First team assistant manager: Rob Dray
  • General Manager Steve Massey
  • Physiotherapist: Tony Beal

Other teams

  • Reserve team manager: Dean Johns
  • Ladies team manager: Vanessa Saunders

Youth teams

  • Youth Chairman: Bob Lovelace
  • Vice Chairman / Team Manager: Quinton Davies
  • Youth Secretary: Neil Blackburn
  • Head Coach and Welfare Officer: Pete North
  • Bideford under 9s team coach : Gary Bedler
  • Bideford under 11s team coaches : Neil Armstrong and Craig Poole
  • Bideford under 13s team coach : Chris Smailes
  • Bideford under 15s team coach: Mark Floyd
  • Bideford under 18s team coach: Peter North

Commercial staff

  • Marketing consultant: Mike Lee
  • Football secretary: Kevin Tyrrell
  • Tannoy and announcer: Barry Weston
  • Assistant editor: Ron Ackland

Supporters' club

  • Chairman: Mike Bell
  • Vice-chairman: Michael Lee
  • Secretary: John Henderson
  • Treasurer: Raymond Taylor

Honours[edit]

League[edit]

Cups[edit]

  • Devon St Lukes Bowl:[5]
    • Winners (5): 1981–82, 1983–84, 1985–86, 1995–96, 2009–10
    • Runners-up (3): 1986–87, 1993–94, 1994–95
  • Devon Professional Cup:
    • Winners (8):1960–61, 1961–62, 1963–64, 1965–66, 1966–67, 1968–69, 1970–71, 1973–74
  • Western Football League Cup:[8][9]
    • Winners (4):1971–72, 1984–85, 2001–02, 2003–04
  • Western Football League Alan Young Cup:[10]
    • Winners (2): 1964–65, 1969–70

Records[edit]

  • Highest League Position:[4] 1st in Southern League Division One South & West 2011–12
  • FA Cup best performance:[4] First round 1964–65, 1973–74, 1977–78, 1981–82
  • FA Trophy best performance:[4] Second round 1969–70
  • FA Vase best performance:[4] Semi-Final 2003–04
  • Record home win: 16–1 v Soundwell, 1950–51
  • Record home loss: 1–10 v Taunton Townl, 1998–99
  • Record away win: 10–0 v Melksham, 2003–04
  • Record attendance: 5,975 v Gloucester City, FA Cup, 1949

Former players[edit]

1. Players that have played/managed in the football league or any foreign equivalent to this level (i.e. fully professional league).
2. Players with full international caps.

Season-by-season record[edit]

Season Division Position Notes
1949–50 Western League Division Three 1 Champions
1950–51 Western League Division Two 3
1951–52 Western League Division Two 1 Champions
1952–53 Western League Division One 4
1953–54 Western League Division One 10
1954–55 Western League Division One 6
1955–56 Western League Division One 6
1956–57 Western League Division One 14
1957–58 Western League Division One 13
1958–59 Western League Division One 7
1959–60 Western League Division One 7
1960–61 Western League 16
1961–62 Western League 3
1962–63 Western League 2 Runner-Up
1963–64 Western League 1 Champions
1964–65 Western League 2 Runner-Up, FA Cup First Round
1965–66 Western League 3
1966–67 Western League 6
1967–68 Western League 14
1968–69 Western League 2 Runner-Up
1969–70 Western League 6
1970–71 Western League 1 Champions
1971–72 Western League 1 Champions. Joined Southern League
1972–73 Southern League Division One South 4
1973–74 Southern League Division One South 5 FA Cup First Round
1974–75 Southern League Division One South 18 Returned to Western League
1975–76 Western League 10
1976–77 Western League Premier Division 6
1977–78 Western League Premier Division 2 Runner-Up, FA Cup First Round
1978–79 Western League Premier Division 2 Runner-Up
1979–80 Western League Premier Division 10
1980–81 Western League Premier Division 5
1981–82 Western League Premier Division 1 Champions, FA Cup First Round
1982–83 Western League Premier Division 1 Champions
1983–84 Western League Premier Division 6
1984–85 Western League Premier Division 2 Runner-Up
1985–86 Western League Premier Division 3
1986–87 Western League Premier Division 6
1987–88 Western League Premier Division 10
1988–89 Western League Premier Division 16
1989–90 Western League Premier Division 16
1990–91 Western League Premier Division 12
1991–92 Western League Premier Division 4
1992–93 Western League Premier Division 14
1993–94 Western League Premier Division 9
1994–95 Western League Premier Division 15
1995–96 Western League Premier Division 6
1996–97 Western League Premier Division 12
1997–98 Western League Premier Division 13
1998–99 Western League Premier Division 17
1999–00 Western League Premier Division 13
2000–01 Western League Premier Division 5
2001–02 Western League Premier Division 1 Champions
2002–03 Western League Premier Division 3
2003–04 Western League Premier Division 1 Champions, FA Vase semi-finals
2004–05 Western League Premier Division 1 Champions
2005–06 Western League Premier Division 1 Champions
2006–07 Western League Premier Division 4
2007–08 Western League Premier Division 6
2008–09 Western League Premier Division 6
2009–10 Western League Premier Division 1 Champions, rejoined Southern League
2010–11 Southern League Division One South & West 10
2011–12 Southern League Division One South & West 1 Champions, promoted to Premier Division
2012–13 Southern League Premier Division 20
2013-4 Southern League Premier Division 10

References[edit]

  1. ^ "The Sports Ground, Bideford". Soccerway. Global Sports Media. Retrieved 20 August 2011. 
  2. ^ a b c Published on Friday 9 January 2009 12:52 (2009-01-09). "Bideford's great western push – Sport". The Scarborough News. Retrieved 2012-07-30. 
  3. ^ Williams, John (2012-07-21). "Bideford A.F.C". Bideford A.F.C. Retrieved 2012-07-30. 
  4. ^ a b c d e f g h i j BIDEFORD at the Football Club History Database
  5. ^ a b "Football Club History Database – Devon County Cups". Fchd.info. Retrieved 2012-07-30. 
  6. ^ a b "Taunton Town fall to defeat against new champions Bideford". This is Somerset. 2012-04-10. Retrieved 2012-07-30. 
  7. ^ "Bideford AFC Squad". Bideford A.F.C. Archived from the original on 21 November 2008. Retrieved 2008-11-04. 
  8. ^ "Western Football League Cup 1955–1988" (PDF). Western Football League. Retrieved 2013-01-06. 
  9. ^ "Western Football League Cup – Les Phillips cup 1989–present" (PDF). Western Football League. Retrieved 2013-01-06. 
  10. ^ "Western Football League Alan Young Cup Winners" (PDF). Western Football League. Retrieved 2013-01-07. 
  11. ^ http://www.neilbrown.newcastlefans.com/player4/briano%27neil.html

External links[edit]