Worksop Town F.C.

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Worksop Town
Worksop Town FC Badge.png
Full nameWorksop Town Football Club
Nickname(s)The Tigers
Founded1861 (claimed)[1]
1930 (reformed)[2]
GroundSandy Lane, Worksop
Capacity2,500 (200 seats)[3]
ChairmanPeter Whitehead
ManagerCraig Parry
LeagueNorthern Premier League Division One East
2021–22Northern Premier League Division One East, 8th of 19
WebsiteClub website

Worksop Town Football Club is an English football club based in Worksop, Nottinghamshire. As of the 2021–22 season the team plays in the Northern Premier League Division One East. They are nicknamed The Tigers and play their home games at Sandy Lane in Worksop.

History[edit]

First club[edit]

The club claims it was originally founded in 1861, which would make it the fourth oldest association football club in the world. However, there is no contemporary evidence to support this claim.[4] The earliest record of football being played by a town club comes from 1873, when a group of 15 Worksopians took on 15 from the Pestalozzian School in the town.[5] The first recorded use of the Worksop Town name was in 1882, when a team using that name played Eckington on 18 February.[6]

The club joined the Sheffield & District Football League in 1892 and also played in the Sheffield Association League during the late 1890s after an unsuccessful one-year spell in the Midland League.

Worksop re-joined the Midland League in 1900 and became a prominent member of the competition before the First World War. It finished third in the league in 1903 and, in 1908, reached the first round of the FA Cup for the first time, losing 1–9 at Stamford Bridge to Chelsea in front of 18,995 spectators.[7]

After the First World War put a halt to football activity in the town, the game returned in 1919 when Worksop Town and Manton Athletic merged to become Worksop and Manton Athletic,[8] although the Worksop Town name remained in popular usage. The club joined the Midland League and in 1921 won the competition for the first time. The 1920s provided the club with its best spell in the FA Cup, reaching the first round in four out of six seasons from 1921. In 1923, it drew Tottenham Hotspur at White Hart Lane – the Tigers pulled off a shock by holding Spurs to goal-less draw. The Worksop board decided against hosting the replay at Central Avenue, and it was beaten 0–9 in the replay two days after the original tie, again at White Hart Lane. In 1926, it reached the second round for the first time after beating Coventry City at Central Avenue in the first round – eventually losing by one goal to three to Chesterfield in the next round.

In 1930, the club withdrew from the Midland League and disbanded, with a new club being formed a week later.[9]

Current club[edit]

The new club initially had to play in the Sheffield Association League and Central Combination before joining the Yorkshire League in 1935.

After the end of the Second World War, the club again folded and a new club called Worksop Town Athletic was formed, initially competing in the Sheffield Association League, but later joining the Midland League. In 1956, it progressed to the third round of the FA Cup for the only time in its history, beating Skegness Town and Bradford City before losing to Swindon Town at the County Ground. Worksop won up its second Midland League title in 1966 before becoming a founder member of the Northern Premier League (NPL) two years later. It returned to the Midland League after just one year, however, as the Tigers finished bottom in the NPL's inaugural season.

Worksop won its third and last Midland League title in 1973 and, a year later, re-joined the NPL, eventually finding its feet at this higher level. In 1978, it once more reached the first round of the FA Cup, losing 1–5 to Barnsley at Oakwell. In 1989, it was relegated to Division 1 of the NPL, and had to move to play in Gainsborough when it was evicted from its Central Avenue home. It spent three years in Gainsborough before returning to the newly built Sandy Lane ground in Worksop in 1992.

The Tigers regained NPL Premier Division status in 1998, by which time Chris Waddle was playing for Worksop, and, in 1999, it finished as runner-up in the NPL, only just missing promotion to the Football Conference. In 2004, it was a founder member of the Conference North, but it only lasted three years in the division before being relegated back to the Northern Premier League. It was around this time that the club fell into financial difficulties and lost ownership of its home ground at Sandy Lane, being forced to rent the grounds of Hucknall Town, Ilkeston Town and Retford United for three years.

In 2011, the club finally returned to Sandy Lane, but this time as tenants of Worksop Parramore, which had bought the ground and allowed the Tigers to play there. The 2013–14 season almost saw Worksop promoted back to the Conference North but it was beaten in the league play-off semi-finals. At the end of the season, the club's owner, Jason Clark, revealed that he would no longer be funding the club, plunging it into a financial crisis, and shortly afterwards the decision was taken to resign from the Northern Premier League and to join the Northern Counties East League (NCEL), entering the NCEL's Premier Division.[10]

The drop to the ninth level of the English football league system also meant a first foray into the FA Vase, having previously competed in the FA Trophy. The club has gained considerable success in another cup competition, the prestigious Sheffield & Hallamshire Senior Cup – as of 2014 it had won the competition eleven times.

Worksop was crowned Northern Counties East League champions on 13 April 2019, after beating Albion Sports 4-0.

Managers[edit]

League and cup history[edit]

  1. ^ League play-off final drawn with Parkgate United and title shared
  2. ^ League play-off semi-finalists

Grounds[edit]

Worksop initially played at two different grounds on Netherton Road before, along with the cricket club, it moved to Bridge Meadow, also known as Newcastle Avenue, in 1891. This had separate cricket and football pitches along with a quarter-mile track. In 1901, it moved across the River Ryton to Central Avenue, staying there until 1988, when it was forced to move to play in Gainsborough. It returned to its home town in 1992 when a new ground was built on Sandy Lane. It lost ownership of Sandy Lane in 2005 and again had to groundshare elsewhere before returning to Sandy Lane in 2011, this time as tenants of Worksop Parramore.

Gallery[edit]

A series of pictures taken at the Worksop Town vs. Sheffield Wednesday friendly match in July 2011.

Honours[edit]

Records[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Worksop Guardian, 7 January 2005
  2. ^ Nottingham Evening Post 14 May 1931
  3. ^ Worksop Town Northern Counties East League
  4. ^ Stocks, J. (2017) A History of Worksop Town FC volume one.
  5. ^ Sheffield Telegraph, 15 March 1873
  6. ^ Sheffield Daily Telegraph, 20 February 1882
  7. ^ Nottingham Evening Post 13 January 1908
  8. ^ Green Un, 8 February 1919
  9. ^ Hartlepool Mail, 6 September 1930
    - Yorkshire Post and Leeds Intelligencer, 11 September 1930
  10. ^ Worksop Town Northern Premier League
    - Club Statement Worksop Town
  11. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k Worksop Town Non-League Directory
  12. ^ Worksop Town Manager Evo-stik League
  13. ^ Simon Clark Worksop Guardian
  14. ^ Worksop Town appoint Shirebrook boss Shaw Worksop Guardian
  15. ^ "Worksoptownfc.co.uk".

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 53°18′42″N 1°07′53″W / 53.31153°N 1.13139°W / 53.31153; -1.13139