Walton Casuals F.C.
|Full name||Walton Casuals Football Club|
Walton on Thames
|Manager||Tony Gale (caretaker)|
|League||Isthmian League Division One South|
|2013–14||Isthmian League Division One South, 9th|
Walton Casuals F.C. are a football club based in Walton-on-Thames, Surrey, England. The club is affiliated to the Surrey County Football Association. They are currently playing in the Isthmian League First Division. The club has a rivalry with Walton & Hersham, who are in the same league.
Walton Casuals Football Club was founded in July 1948 and owed its early origins to members of the Armed Forces, who formed a Sunday side playing only friendly fixtures during the 1946–47 season. The club started off in Division 1 of the Surrey Intermediate (Central) League, playing at Elm Grove Recreation Ground, gaining promotion to the Premier Division in 1952–53, in which Walton Casuals finished runners-up on 3 occasions: 1954–55, 1956–57 and 1964–65. The Surrey Intermediate (Central) League disbanded in 1965 and the club moved into the League’s Western Section for three seasons.
In 1969 Casuals joined the new Surrey Senior League and moved into its current home at Franklyn Road. Two years later Casuals became founder members of the Suburban League, playing one season at Walton & Hersham’s Stompond Lane ground before moving to Addlestone’s Liberty Lane ground for eight seasons and then returning to Franklyn Road where the Reserves had been continuing playing in the Surrey Combination League. The 1982–83 season saw Casuals win their first major honour, becoming champions of the Southern Section of the Suburban League and setting a League record of going 23 games unbeaten under manager Kim Harris. The following year Casuals were runners-up behind Sutton United, and in the 1986–87 season reached the Surrey Premier Cup Final, only to lose to Croydon.
Subsequent years saw the club slip into a steady decline and it was regularly finishing in the bottom two of the Suburban League. After 21 years of competing in the Suburban League, the club decided to switch to the Surrey Premier League in June 1992 in order to join the pyramid system. A year of consolidation paved the way for major changes at Franklyn Road the following summer as Kim Harris was reappointed as manager after a successful spell at Hersham RBL and the club expanded into both Sunday and youth football. In 1993–94 Casuals won the Surrey Premier League Challenge Cup, defeating Holmesdale after a replay, and in 1994–95 the club finished runners-up to Chobham in the League and were losing finalists to Vandyke in the Challenge Cup. During the summer the club was promoted to the Combined Counties League.
The first four seasons of senior football proved a real struggle with Casuals finishing bottom of the table in 1996–97, but able to avoid relegation thanks to the Combined Counties League exercising its prerogative to maintain a minimum number of clubs in the Premier Division. With the help of Walton charities, the installation of floodlights at Franklyn Road was completed in February 1999, a major hurdle overcome as far as ground requirements were concerned. The appointment of Mick Sullivan and Garry Clark as joint managers in the summer of 1999 brought about a dramatic improvement in results. As well as a best-ever finish of 5th in the league, the club won the League Cup in 2000, beating Viking Greenford 4–2 in the final at Farnborough. The following season was also a relatively successful one, with a placing of 7th in the table and another appearance in the League Cup final, beaten on this occasion by double-winners Cove 3–0 at Woking.
Although 2002–03 proved a disappointment in as much as the club finished in a lowly 18th spot, the seeds of success had been sown with Spencer Collins taking over as first-team manager in November 2002 and a team capable of much better things slowly began to take shape, with ex-West Ham United player Tony Gale installed as Director of Football. After more team-building in 2003–04, and a big jump up the table to finish in 7th spot, the club took the Combined Counties by storm the year after, finishing 26 points clear at the top of the table. After initially failing an FA ground inspection, the club launched a successful appeal and achieved their dream of promotion to the Isthmian League Division One for 2005–06. The club finished 15th in their maiden season, while subsequent seasons have seen them regularly finish in the bottom half. In 2009–10 the club achieved its best run in the FA Cup reaching the 3rd qualifying round before losing to Staines Town.
The club appointed Neil Shipperley manager in the summer of 2010 and managed to finish in 12th place, which became the highest league finish to date. During early 2011 the club opened a new clubhouse and new changing facilities, with Mick Sullivan returning to the helm in October following the resignation of Neil Shipperley. After being sacked a year later, Danny Carroll took over as manager. With a repreival saving the Stags in the 2012–13 season, the club appointed ex-Kingstonian assistant manager Mark Hams as manager, along with his brother Neil as assistant. The duo rejuvenated the squad and impressed, leading Walton to their highest ever league finish of 9th.
However, after nine league games, which led to nine defeats, Mark and Neil Hams left their positions at the club by mutual consent on Friday 19th September 2014. Tony Gale and Anthony Gale were drafted in as caretaker managers, and immediately picked up the club's first win of the season, securing a 1-0 victory in a trip to Redhill.
Walton Casuals play their home games at Waterside Stadium, Waterside Drive, Walton on Thames, Surrey, KT12 2JP. Plans have been announced with the council to redevelop a Sports Hub at Waterside Stadium, which will see a whole new stadium built for Walton Casuals and neighboring sports clubs.
Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.
Current coaching staff
|Tony Gale||Caretaker Manager|
|Anthony Gale||Caretaker Assistant Manager|
|Mark Francis||Kit Man|
|Adrian Badiali||Goalkeeping Coach|
|Graham Shoemark||Matchday Assistant|
Current backroom staff
|Anthony Gale||Director of Football|
|Dave Symonds||General Manager / Media Manager|
|Gus Schofield||Club Secretary|
|Brian Drucquer||Membership Secretary|
|Maureen Cayford||Boardroom Hostess|
|Kane Brooker||Club Reporter / Programme Editor|
|Terry Woodyatt||Stadium Manager|
|Charlie Symonds||Club Shop Manager|
|Megan Saunders||Matchday Mascot|
- Combined Counties League Premier Division :
- Winners (1): 2004–05
- Surrey County Premier League:
- Runners Up (1): 1994–95
- Surrey Intermediate (Central) League:
- Runners Up (3): 1954–55, 1956–57, 1964–65
- Suburban League Southern Section:
- Winners (1): 1982–83
- Runners Up (1): 1983–84
- Suburban League Premier B:
- Winners (1): 2012–13
- Surrey Premier Cup:
- Winners (1): 2012–13
- Runners Up (1): 1986–87
- Surrey Premier League Challenge Cup:
- Winners (1): 1993–94
- Runners Up (1): 1994–95
- Combined Counties LeaguePremier Challenge Cup :
- Winners (1): 1999–00
- Runners Up (1): 2000–01
- Highest league position: 12th in Isthmian League Division One, 2010–11
- FA Cup best performance: Third qualifying round, 2009–10
- FA Trophy best performance: Second qualifying round, 2006–07
- FA Vase best performance: First round 1999-00, 2000–01, 2002–03
- Record attendance: 1748 v AFC Wimbledon (12 April 2004)
- Record goal scorer: Emerson Barrs-James (92)
- Most appearances: Lawrence Ennis (235)
- Oldest player: Norman Rudd (47 yrs 351 days)
- Youngest player: Billy Rowley (16 yrs 147 days)
- Biggest win: 10–0 v Chessington United (A) 28/12/04 (Combined Counties League)
- Players that have played/managed in the football league or any foreign equivalent to this level (i.e. fully professional league).
- Players with full international caps.
- Nick Burton
- Charlie Ide
- Kofi Lockhart-Adams
- Mark Nicholls
- Peter Cawley
- Chris McLaren
- James Hoyt
- Aaron Barnett
- Mark Hams 2013–2014
- Mick Sullivan 2012–2013
- Neil Shipperley 2010–2011
- Spencer Collins 2009–2010
- John Morris 2008–2009
- Kim Harris 2007–2008
- Spencer Collins 2005–2007
- Ray Noad 2002–2005
- Mick Sullivan & Garry Clark 1999–2002
- Mick Byrne 1997–1999
- "News". SurreyFA. 2012-09-18. Retrieved 2012-12-23.
- WALTON CASUALS at the Football Club History Database
- "Programme Editors Downloads – Club History – Walton Casuals Football Club". Pitchero.com. 2012-11-29. Retrieved 2012-12-22.
- "Saturday Premier Cup Previous Winners". SurreyFA. Retrieved 2013-04-28.
- "Official CCFL Web Site". Combinedcountiesleague.co.uk. Retrieved 2012-12-23.