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Hellenic League Club Promoted To Football League - 15 May

One time Hellenic League club Forest Green Rovers were promoted to the English Football League for the first time as they beat Tranmere Rovers in the National League promotion final 1-3 at Wembley yesterday.

Forest Green, of Nailsworth Gloucestershire, were amongst the founders of the Gloucestershire County League in 1968, where they played until moving up to the Premier Division of the Hellenic League in 1975 .

Forest Green's first season in the Hellenic League Premier Division saw them finish fourth. Although they then spent two seasons in lower mid-table, third place in 1978–79 was the start of a successful four years, culminating in the 1981–82 season, in which they won the Hellenic League and reached the final of the FA Vase at Wembley they defeated Rainworth Miners Welfare 3–0 to win the trophy. At the end of the season the club were promoted to the Midland Division of the Southern League.

They spent 19 years in the Football Conference (Vanarama National League) achieving third place this season and winning the play off yesterday. FGR will be accompanying division champions Lincoln City in Division Two of the Football League.

Forest Green Rovers' promotion to the Football League means Nailsworth is the smallest ever place to host an EFL club next term, with a population of 5,794.


Physio Required - 21 April

Evo-Stik Southern League, Division One South and West, Slimbridge AFC are seeking to appoint a Physio for season 2017-2018. 

The successful applicant should be qualified to Intermediate level or the equivalent and hold a basic first aid certificate. 

Please apply to Secretary Colin Gay on 07702070229 or email colin.gay@slimbridgeafc.co.uk 


rdf television a zodiak media companyBrexit TV Show Looking For A Leave Family - 23 March

RDF Television are currently making a new one-off programme with the working title of Wife Swap: Brexit Special, and are looking for a family to take part.

They have contacted the Hellenic League, to see if anyone would be interested in getting involved. They are specifically looking for a confident and passionate family to be a part of the programme as ambassadors for the 'leave' side of the debate.

They hope to film between 22-28 April. It's based on an old format that swapped the wives of two families to explore their dynamics. Molly Garfoot of RDF Television explains, "We want to do the same, but this time it's not about who does the washing up and more about how a family decided which way they voted in the referendum and why. This programme is giving two ordinary British families, from either side of the debate, the opportunity to share their opinions on the issue."

If anybody is interested in speaking further, the researcher on the team Lawrence can be reached via email, lawrence.davey@rdftelevision.com<mailto:lawrence.davey@rdftelevision.com> or on 0207 013 4091. This would just be for a research chat, with no obligation to take part.


badshot lea fcFunding For Badshot Lea - 8 March

Former Hellenic League, now Combined Counties club, Badshot Lea have received a significant grant to develop the club for the future.

Statement from the club. "We would like to advise you that the Football Foundation/Football Stadium Improvement Fund/Sport England have now given us permission to proceed with the Westfield Lane Project. We also have funding from Surrey County Council Community Improvement Fund and Waverley Borough Council.

We have satisfied all of their conditions including coming within budget. We will shortly be instructing contractors to commence work on the site.

As you can imagine, our Committee, a small one at that, are delighted with this outcome and that the years of hard work and determination have paid off. This will allow Badshot Lea Football Club to grow and flourish and give our 30 Youth Teams a proper exit strategy as they come up through the ranks and allow the senior section to pick for their team from some home grown Badshot Lea youth players. Having a new facility will give us the much needed "home" that we have so badly needed over the years. Truly new beginnings and ,of course, hard work to come.

We would like to thank everyone for their patience, understanding and support in getting us to where we are and we look forward to seeing you all at the ground as it develops and of course at the grand opening. We will keep you abreast of any developments and please do not hesitate to contact us if you want to know more or get involved in any way."

Yours sincerely
Mark Broad, Chairman


Tom Larman RIP - 3 February 2017

Sad news for many involved with Oxfordshire football, Tom Larman has passed away after suffering a stroke.

Tom was the driving force behind Abingdon Town for over 10 years, becoming chairman after the club resigned from the Isthmian League and joined the Hellenic League in 2005. Despite the club being in financial turmoil before he became involved, Tom worked tirelessly to keep the club going.

Tom will always be remembered with fondness - former Hellenic player Gareth Walker commented on Facebook. "He never let anything get him down, through thick and thin he tried his best where ever he went to make people smile, laugh and forget about their problems."

Chinnor's Richard Carr said. "Goring Old Boys hosted Chinnor tonight at Abingdon Town and during the game it became known that Tom Larman, after a stroke last Saturday had sadly passed away. When the game finished both sets of players held a one minute round of applause in honour of Tom to respect everything he has done for local football and in particular for the way he has supported Hellenic Veterans football over the last 10+ years. Both sides stayed long into the night in the Abingdon bar and raised a toast to a lost friend."

Outside of football Tom's other great passion was drag racing. Having been taken to events as a youngster, he finally fulfilled his dream in recent years by purchasing his own, pride and joy, known as "The Ferret". Racing the vehicle in events under the "Team Larman" legend.

The thoughts of the Hellenic League are with his wife Wendy, and children, Tom Jnr., Craig and Tara. Tom was a character born with heart, humour and passion, he will always be remembered fondly.

Thomas "Tom" Larman

Charity Football Match - 19 January

A charity football match is being held Sunday 29th January for a former Hellenic player Nathan Jack.

Nathan represented Hellenic sides Bracknell Town, Kidlington, Flackwell Heath, and Thame United for who he won Hellenic player of the year that season.

Nathan has suffered with Cluster Headaches, a Neurological Disability, since the age of 11 after being diagnosed with a brain tumour.

Cluster Headaches is one of the most painful conditions known to mankind and is characterised by recurrent, severe headaches on one side of the head, typically around the eye. In the past three years this condition has gradually got to the point where Nathan can no longer hide it, he can no longer do day to day activities ie; work, drive, go to the gym and generally struggles to leave the house, it has literally taken over his life. It is a brutal and disabling attack which can last between 30 /180 minutes, he is currently having between 3/5 attacks per day.

Awareness needs to be raised to this awful condition as there is no know cure or cause to the disability and many Medical Professional practitioner's do not know enough about this disability.

A charity football match has been arranged by close friend and former team mate Darren Crane, the match will take place at Arbour Park, home of Slough Town Sunday 29 January, kick off is at 2pm and it is £10 to come and watch, the match will involve all of Nathan's former team mates from various clubs.

We would like everyone to come along to show their support and help try raise awareness for this awful condition. More information about the disease can be sourced on the following links www.migrainetrust.org or www.nhs.uk


Who Will Be The Next Swan's Man? - 30 December

slimbridge AFCEvo-Stik Southern Division One South & West Slimbridge are inviting applications for their vacant manager's post following the departure of Leon Sterling on Tuesday.

The former Hellenic League club's long serving manager resigned after the 2-1 home defeat by relegation candidates Bridgwater Town, Slimbridge lie 16th in Division One South and West of the Southern League.

Jon Palmer writes in the Gloucestershire Echo, The Swans next game is at Shortwood United on January 2, with assistant manager Freddy Ward taking caretaker charge. If club stalwart Ward wants to take the job on a permanent basis, he is likely to be given a chance.

However the club is advertising the position and Palmer speculates who else could be in the frame if Ward decides to step aside? The list of potential applicants include a number of past and present Uhlsport Hellenic League candidates.

Brimscombe and Thrupp's highly-rated young boss Sam Prior has said he will not be applying for the Slimbridge job.

But Longlevens' James French, Mark Pritchett at Tuffley Rovers and Lydney Town's Mark Lee have all done admirable jobs in the Hellenic League and may be tempted to make the step up a level.

Pritchett has already taken Tuffley past their points total of last season, while French has taken Longlevens on a rapid rise from the Northern Senior League since 2011.

Gerry Oldham has enjoyed success as number two at both Cinderford Town and Evesham, where he is currently working under boss Paul Collicutt. The ex-Cheltenham Saracens manager has a good reputation for developing youngsters and is thought to be keen on taking on another managerial job in the future.

All applications should be made to Club Secretary Colin Gay in writing to either 21 Union Street, Dursley, GL11 4JT or via email to colin.hamish@icloud.com. A club statement said: "All interested persons can be confident that their applications will be dealt with in the strictest of confidence. All applicants will receive a response within seven days of their application being received."


toolstation western leagueMark Edmonds - 15 December

The Directors of the Toolstation Western League are deeply saddened to report the passing of Mark Edmonds, League Secretary, on Tuesday 13th December following a brave battle against cancer.

Mark's football commitments included many years as a referee, officiating on the Western League for a considerable time. He joined Wiltshire County FA as the Discipline Secretary before being appointed as General Secretary of the Toolstation Western League at the start of the 2014-15 season. Mark leaves a wife Sarah, son Jordan and daughter Aimee. Details of his funeral will be circulated when known.


Witney Town Stadium Demolished - 7 October

Demolition work on the former Hellenic League Witney Town Football Stadium has started just days before a decision on plans to redevelop the site.

Plans to build 257 homes, offices and a hotel at the Downs Road site are recommended for approval at next Monday’s lowlands planning committee meeting. But this week workers have been on the site flattening the stadium’s stands after it is believed police and fire service said the building posed a ‘risk of injury or death to children’. Though plans to redevelop the site remain unapproved, a West Oxfordshire District Council report said consent had been given to demolish the building.

A spokesman for council’s planning department said: “We have been informed by the agent that they have demolished the building on fire service and police advice. “This was due to a series of break-ins and fires where they were advised that there is a risk of injury or death to children.”

An online petition against the demolition had gained more than 520 signatures, the report to council said. The authority has asked for £1.25m funding towards a new roundabout junction on Downs Road with the A40, as well as footway and crossing improvements on Downs Road and Bookend. Both the council’s sports officers and Sports England say a new 3G football pitch should also be paid for by developers to replace the lost stadium. The report said Witney Holdings Limited, which is behind the application, had agreed to provide the £840,000 needed.

The lowlands planning committee will meet to discuss the plans on Monday at 2pm, in the council’s Wood Green offices in Witney. A spokesman for Witney Holdings Ltd said last night permission had already been granted for the demolition and that it was separate to Monday’s decision


Goalkeeper Looking For Step 5 Side - 1 October

Goalkeeper Lee Allen is returning to the United Kingdom, following a stint playing in Australia for Shepparton United, and is keen to join a team in the Hellenic Premier League.

Lee will be based in Berkshire, upon his return, and he can count Hartley Wintney and Knaphill as former clubs where he was the first-choice Goalkeeper. He can travel from Berkshire to other areas, but asks for sensible distances only.

Lee can be contacted at leeallengk95@yandex.com or via mobile – 07919562569


Petition Launched To Save Derelict Ground - 11 August

Residents have said it would be a disaster if plans to get rid of Witney Community Stadium go ahead and have launched a petition to save the now derelict ground.

Reported in the Oxford Mail. The stadium in Downs Road has sat empty since February 2013 when the now defunct Witney Town moved out and plans knock the current building down ahead of major redevelopment have been put forward.

But many are determined not to let it go without a fight. Fitness instructor Dan Skidmore wants the facility to be brought back to its former glory and has launched a petition to save the stadium. The 27-year-old, who used to play football there, said he had to do something when plans were announced earlier this year for 257 homes, offices and a hotel to be built on the land.

Mr Skidmore, who lives in Mountfield Road with partner Charmaine Sadler and their 10-month-old daughter Sophia, said: "Despite it's current condition, to get rid of the stadium altogether would be a disaster. It has so much potential. This town deserves a decent football team. There's a real need. But the stadium can also become a social hub for so much more than football. It can be used for other sporting activities, a music venue, a place for business meetings, car boots, parties, conferences."

Former players for Witney town have also come out in support of the petition. Andy Leach said: "I was Witney Town Captain when we moved to the ground and my last league game there 1999. Fantastic time and memories. It's so wrong that Witney hasn't a football team any more . The ground must stay then maybe Witney Town football club will happen again."

Back in May, developers Witney Holdings Ltd submitted a proposal for 3,720 square metres office space, a 62-bed hotel and up to 257 homes in Downs Road- which would mean the demolition of the stadium. The application is due to be heard by West Oxfordshire District Council's planning committee later this year.
Councillor for planning Warwick Robinson said the land, on the western site of Downs Road, was not one the council had earmarked in its draft local plan as suitable for development.

Mr Skidmore's petition, titled "Save Witney Community Football Stadium" has generated more than 150 signatures and 50 comments from people desperate to see it stay in the town.

Scout leader Chloe Tebby said: "Witney is a great town with a great community. However with all the development that has been going on, our future community - our children - have been left out. The town is in real need of facilities that benefit us."

Mr Skidmore added: "I grew up in Witney and played football for the local team. I even played at the ground myself. This is something this town is missing out on. Once the ground is gone we'll be lucky to get another. I just think it's a waste of a building and a waste of potential."

Witney Town FC started in 2001 with the intent of bringing back senior football to the town. But after lengthy discussions in 2013 between Uhlsport Hellenic League and the club trustees, no-one came forward to take over Witney Town, and the club folded. The stadium has been left empty ever since.

The developers says the site is currently unsafe and should be demolished and their proposal represent a sustainable use of the land.

Visit ipetitions.com/petition/resurrection-of-witney-community-football-stadium to sign Mr Skidmore's petition. He is aiming for a total of 500 signatures.


Women’s Football League Cup Finals - 11 May

The Southern Region Women’s Football League is in the FA Women’s Pyramid of Football at Winter Step 3 (Premier Division) and Step 4 (Division One North) as one of the eight regional leagues in the country residing below the FA Women’s Premier League operating at Winter Steps 1 and 2 into which SRWFL can be promoted into.

The main area designated for the League is the combined region of areas covered by the Berks & Bucks County FA, Hampshire County FA and the Oxfordshire County FA with the league endeavouring to rotate its annual league cup finals day throughout the region.

This year the finals are coming to Scours Lane, Tilehurst, Reading RG30 6AY on Sunday 22nd May 2016, which is fitting given the town and surrounding areas are active in providing and promoting football for girls and women and Reading FC Women are members of FA Women’s Super League.

Proceedings start with the Chairman’s cup final kicking off at 11.00 am between Team Solent and Chesham United Ladies who finished third and runners-up respectively in league’s Division One North. The Chairman’s cup is a plate competition for League cup first round losers.

The League cup final between Southampton Women’s and Oxford City Ladies will kick off at 3.00 pm and promises to be an intriguing affair between the champions of Division One North (Southampton) and the runners up in the Premier Division (Oxford City). Oxford is looking for a cup double having already won the Oxford County FA Women’s cup this season.

Local match official Aaron Baker is referring the Chairman’s cup final while Jake Atkinson is Assistant Referee for the League cup final.

Admission is £3.00 adults and £1.00 (children 11 – 16) per final so come along and watch quality ladies football being played locally.

advance 6 formFull Time Education & Football Programme Starting September - 5 May

Advance 6th Form @ the Oxford Academy and Oxford United Community Trust will be launching its Education and Football Academy this September.

This is a brand new partnership which will broaden your opportunities to study whilst gaining valuable playing and work experience within the Community Trust, which is supported by the OUFC elite Academy.

Unlike the traditional football and education courses that have become very popular in recent years, the Advance Oxford United Community Trust Academy will offer a range of educational courses from Level 2 BTECs through to A Levels in various subjects, including English and Mathematics retakes.

If you enroll onto the Advance Oxford United Community Trust Academy benefits will include:

• Study a full time BTEC or A Level course – See prospectus for details of courses

• A daily training programme and weekly competitive match day experience

• Free access to the school fitness suite – strength and conditioning programmes designed by qualified staff

• Play in the U19 FA Youth Development League against other Professional Football Club academies (Boys only)

• Play in the English Colleges Cat 1 League and WS Development League (Girls Only)

• Gain valuable work based qualifications such as your FA Level 1 & 2 coaching badges, First Aid qualifications

• A free season ticket to Oxford United first team games and Oxford United Ladies first team games

• Work alongside Oxford United Football Club employees to gain valuable work placement experience in all departments.

Be part of this exciting new partnership by emailing OUFCAdvance@theoxfordacademy.org.uk or calling 01865 774311 ext 2111.

Trials will take place at the Kassam Stadium on Saturday 21st May. Download Scholarship Flyer


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