Basingstoke Town F.C.
|Full name||Basingstoke Town Football Club|
|Nickname(s)||The Dragons or The 'Stoke|
|Capacity||6,000 (650 seated)|
|League||National League South|
|2014–15||Conference South, 3rd|
Basingstoke Town Football Club is an English football club based in Basingstoke, Hampshire. The club are currently members of the National League South, the sixth highest tier of the English league system, and play at the Camrose ground. Their motto, 'Vestigia Nulla Retrorsum', means 'No stepping back'.
The club was established in 1896 by a merger of Aldworth United and Basingstoke Albion. They won the North Division of the Hampshire League in 1911–12 and 1919–20, but did not win another title until winning Division One in 1967–68, feat they repeated in 1968–69 and 1970–71, a year in which they were unbeaten in the league, and also won the Hampshire Senior Cup. At the end of the season they were promoted to the South Division of the Southern League South.
The club finished eighth in their first season in the Southern League, and they also reached the first round of the FA Cup for the first time. A then-record attendance of 3,400 saw them lose 5–1 at home to Northampton Town. In 1984–85 the club won the title, and were promoted to the Premier Division. In 1988 they switched to the Premier Division of the Isthmian League, where they were relegated in their first season. However, they made an immediate return to the Premier Division after finishing as runners-up. In their first season back in the division they won the Hampshire Senior Cup for a second time, and reached the second round of the FA Cup, losing 3–2 at home to Torquay United.
They were relegated to Division One again in 1993–94. In 1996 they won the Hampshire Senior Cup with a 2–0 win over Waterlooville, and retained it the following season with an identical result. That season the club finished second in the league to earn promotion to the Premier Division, and also reached the second round of the FA Cup, beating Wycombe Wanderers 5–4 on penalties in a first round replay, before losing 4–3 on penalties to Northampton Town in another replay. They reached the first round again the following season, but lost 2–1 at home to Bournemouth.
In 2003–04 they finished fourteenth in the Premier Division. Despite losing in the play-offs for a place in the newly established Conference South, the club was placed in the league after Hendon chose not to join. In 2006–07 they reached the second round of the FA Cup again, beating Chesterfield 1–0 away from home, before losing 3–1 in a replay to local rivals Aldershot Town. In 2007–08 they won the Hampshire Senior Cup for a fourth time, beating Farnborough 1–0 in the final.
In 2008, local businessman Rafi Razzak, owner of the Basingstoke-based IT company Centerprise International, took over as Chairman of the club. Former Scotland international Frank Gray was installed as manager but despite an increased budget from the disbanding of the reserve team, progress on the field was difficult to achieve. Chairman Rafi stated his wish for a minimum play-off finish in the Conference South for the 2011–12 season. The club unveiled plans to relocate to a new 5,000 capacity community stadium in December 2011 on land to the west of the Hilton Basingstoke hotel, that would be funded by the development of the club's current Camrose home. with a view to move into their new home in time for the start of the 2014–15 season. Frank Gray was dismissed as manager on 20 February after a poor run of form which left the club, realistically, too far off a play-off place to challenge for come May. Academy Manager Jason Bristow was handed the job of First Team Manager at least until the end of the current season, considered by many the obvious choice for the job. Bristow's first game in charge was a 3–1 win at The Camrose over Thurrock. Basingstoke Town F.C finished the 2011–12 season in 5th place, which put them in the play-off semi-finals, but unfortunately they lost to Dartford over the two legs.
Jason Bristow after the promising end to the 2011–12 season was hired as manager for Basingstoke
The 2012–13 season for Basingstoke was a bumpy affair with mixed results Basingstoke started the season with good results with their best win against Weymouth winning the FA Cup 2nd qualifying round 3–1 at the Camrose but results took a turn for the worse and losing games that were frustrating for Jason Bristow who was soon hoping to see things take a turn again in the 3rd FA Cup qualifying round against Dorchester Town but lost a tight game 1–0 which eventually saw Dorchester featured on ITV Sport in highlights that lose saw Basingstoke have a horrible October only winning 1 game and not winning any league fixtures that month almost putting Basingstoke last place in the league
November was another concerning month for Basingstoke only officially playing 3 games which they did not win and their heaviest defeat against lower league AFC Totton in the FA Trophy qualifying round 3 losing 3–0 Jason Bristow was concerned so much that the club decided to play an open training friendly game against Hartley Wintney F.C. Basingstoke's best month in their league campaign of the season was January playing 4 games winning 3 and narrowly drawing 1-w to Welling United after a late equaliser in stoppage time Basingstoke after January again saw a return of mixed results and concerns of relegation but a draw against Truro City and a win against high flying Dover Athletic in the last month of the season was just enough to them secure a spot in the league next season finishing only just 4 points and 10 goals above the relegation Basingstoke finished the season in a tightly packed bottom half of the table in 14th place
The 2013–14 season for Basingstoke was another carbon copy of 2012–13 season though there was positives to take more than negatives an excellent start to the season saw coming up to midway through the season left Basingstoke just outside the playoffs and looking to be like a real threat to push for the playoffs the season but a late run in of only winning 3 games in 10 eventually saw Basingstoke creep towards the relegation zone more than the playoffs and amazingly again for the 2nd consecutive season finished in the league season in 14th place cup competitions saw them knocked out of the 1st round they play in the FA Cup. The FA Trophy was no better either being knocked out in the 1st round proper but Basingstoke did manage to reach their county cup final the Hampshire Senior Cup meeting rivals Havant & Waterlooville F.C. beating them 3–2 after extra time at Fratton Park Portsmouth
2014-15 season for Basingstoke was more successful for the Dragons and also made a major sponsor signing with Sky Sports morning TV show Soccer AM and Basingstoke celebrated this sponsorship with a final pre season friendly game with local rivals Woking who won narrowly 2-1. The Dragons started their league season in decent form winning 5 games from a possible 8 the only disappointment for Jason Bristow was a Hampshire Senior Cup 2nd round exit from next door rivals Tadley Calleva F.C. who took the game to penalties and beat The Dragons 5-4 after drawing 2-2 after 90 minutes
October saw Basingstoke Town FC win all of their games including their replay in the FA Cup against Harrow Borough F.C. which eventually saw Jason Bristow and player Chris Flood pick up Manager Of The Month and Player Of The Month respectively for Octobers awards. Basingstoke Town eventually made a trip to Conference Premier side A.F.C. Telford United in the FA Cup 1st round proper replay at Telford's New Bucks Head but lost in a hard thought game 2-1. Basingstoke also lost to Hampshire rivals Gosport Borough F.C. in the FA Trophy
Basingstoke eventually managed to finish their league season and matched their highest ever Conference South finish in 3rd place and played Whitehawk F.C. in Semi Final playoff's and drew 1-1 at The Enclosed Ground. The 2nd leg played at the Soccer AM Stadium unfortunately for The Dragons were undone by a brilliant 2nd half strike from Whitehawk and lost the match 1-0 (2-1 on aggregate) Whitehawk eventually played Boreham Wood F.C. in the final and went on to lose 2-1 after extra time
The ground did have a capacity of 6,000 however due to Health and safety regulations the current capacity is somewhere in the region of 3,000. Basingstoke boast a 650-seat main stand. The ground's record attendance was set in 1997 for a game against Wycombe Wanderers in the first round of the FA Cup in November 1997. The attendance that night was 5,085.
Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.
Out on loan
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- Manager: Jason Bristow
- Assistant Manager: Michael Gilkes
- Goalkeeper Coach: David Smalley
- Physio: Grace Smith
- Academy Manager: Jason Bristow
- Academy Coach: Adam Clarke
- Hampshire League Division One:
- Winners (3): 1967–68, 1968–69, 1970–71
- Runners up (3): 1965–66, 1966–67, 1968–69
- Hampshire League North Division:
- Winners (2): 1911–12, 1919–20
- Conference South:
- Play-off semi-finalists (2): 2011–2012, 2014–15
- Hampshire Senior Cup:
- Winners (6): 1970–71, 1989–90, 1995–96, 1996–97, 2007–08, 2013–14
- Runners up (6):1964-65, 1975–76, 1981–82, 1985–86, 1998–99, 2005–06
- Remembrance Cup:
- Winners (2): 2005, 2006
- Best league position: Third in Isthmian League Premier Division, 2000–01, Third in Conference South, 2014–15
- Best FA Cup performance: Second round, 1989–90, 1997–98, 2006–07
- Best FA Trophy performance: Second round, 2008–09
- Record Goalscorer – Paul Coombs 164 (1991–99)
- Record Appearances – Billy Coombs (1980s)
- Biggest win – 10–0 vs. Chichester City, FA Cup 1st Qualifying Round, 1976
- Biggest defeat – 8–0 vs. Aylesbury United, Southern League, 1979
- Biggest home attendance – 5,085 vs. Wycombe Wanderers, FA Cup first round, November 1997
- Biggest home league attendance – 2,810 vs. Aldershot Town, 26 December 1998
Notable former players
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.
- "New Stadium Plan For Basingstoke Town". 1 December 2011.
- Basingstoke Town at the Football Club History Database
- "Football Club History Database – Hampshire County Cups". Fchd.info. Retrieved 17 July 2012.