In wishing you all the Seasons greetings and a peaceful New Year, this prolonged snowy weather may mean readers not being able to watch their club this week and, in turn the current " News" via the League Bulletin, in their Matchday Programmes so here is a copy of the front page editorial of same :-
With the ice and very heavy snow enveloping the South-East once again , it was a total white-out this weekend with Takeley and Barkingside falling to the elements on Friday. Even so, we managed some midweek games and Burnham Ramblers accepted an invitation from Chelmsford City on Monday to play a friendly at Melbourne Park ( Att 70 ) and took the lead thanks to a Lloyd Wilson goal on 5 mins, Sam Higgins equalised for the Clarets in the 11th minute and Lloyd Wilson then made it 1-2 a minute later but then Chelmsford City got their act in order and scored freely through Billy Bricknell 15m 30m and 62 mins, Dave Rainford 26 mins Sam Higgins 64mins and 68mins and Matthew Lock 60 mins for an 8-2 win.
Tuesday saw three County Cup ties . In the Essex County Cup , Hullbridge Sports putting up a brave fight against Ryman League Heybridge Swifts whose' Luke Callender netted one in each half for a 2-0 win. Stansted and Grays Athletic met at Hargrave Park and Danny Bunce with a penalty in the 12th min put the visitors ahead but John Bricknell equalised in the 28th minute only for Alex Osborn to settle the tie for Grays Athletic in 82 mins. In the Middlesex Senior Cup, Hampton and Richmond got caught in traffic around the M 25 and the game didn't kick off until 8.42pm with the visitors eventually scoring the only goal in the 80th min through Dean Inman,.
Wednesday came and with it a slight thaw, weather wise, Bethnal Green United and Witham ( Att 28 ) locked horns at the Mile End Stadium in their Group A League Cup tie which resulted in a 2-2 draw with Michael Begg 62 mins and Jason Fox 72 mins scoring for Bethnal Green United and Rob Whitnell with two in 66 mins and 77 mins for the visitors which should see both club through to the Quarters with one tie, London Apsa v Southend Manor still due to be played. I
In the League at a desperately cold Southchurch Park , the young blades of Southend Manor met a new look side from Bowers & Pitsea and honours were equal for 30 mins before Chris Badderly put Southend Manor ahead which is how it stood at half-time for the 36 hardy souls watching on. In the second half, Anton Dwyer scored twice in 60 mins and 75 mins for Southend Manor but Bowers & Pitsea, despite much pressure could only find the net once and that was thanks to Martin Llewellyn in 73 mins . This made it 8 league game wins in a row for Southend.
So in the absence of any other news here is a little piece of to keep you amused for this week :-
Whatever happened too .....
A journey of defunct F A Vase opponents .....
We can be very proud , as a League, to have won the F A Vase on three occasions thanks to Billericay Town twice and Stansted, but during those journeys , many clubs that we have met, some on more than one occasion, are no longer with us although some have been re-formed like Epping Town or lost their qualification status like A F A sides, Norseman, Old Esthameians and East Barnet Old Grammarians ( beaten by Eton Manor 5-0 in 1977-78 ) or have dropped to a level of Junior football not often publicised like City of Norwich School Old Boys Union, so its only those that have passed into the ether that I am going to mention : -
The F A Vase was inaugurated in 1974-75 and first out of the hat are Ford United who travelled to South London and beat Royal Arsenal Sports and Royal Artillery of the Spartan League , 3-0 in the First Round. In 1975-76, Eton Manor met and beat Willesden 2-1 , the latter folding after their ground was changed to a hockey venue. Ford United also beat Lion Sports 3-1, a Combined Counties side from Bisley in Surrey. In the second round that year , eventual winners Billericay Town, travelled to Spartan League , Crown and Manor who after playing at Albury Ride, Cheshunt, then moved to Mile End Stadium and now play in a far more minor form in the Cheshunt Youth League.
In 1976-77 it was Basildon United’s turn to meet R.A.S.R.A. and won 1-5 at their Charlton base. Brightlingsea United lost 1-2 at Alma Swanley, a Kent Club, of the Spartan League and, in the same area and league, Swanley Town were beaten 2-0 by eventual winners, Billericay Town.
In 1977-78 Canvey Island went to Deri Park, Rainham and lost 0-1 and Sawbridgeworth Town lost to Selby of the Herts County League, 2-4. Bowers United tasted success, 2-1 over the River at Heathside Sports from Darenth
1978-79 Canvey also went over the Thames and met Dartford Glentworth , losing 4-5 . Swanley Town, Alma Swanley, Rainham Town, Crown and Manor, Collier Row, Beckton United and Selby all competed against us on more than one occasion. Stansted lost 1-4 to Baldock Town.
We swiftly move on to 1981-82 for the next of the deceased and that is Waterlows , a Secure Printing firm whom Wivenhoe Town beat 2-0 in the Extra Preliminary Round. Canvey Island beat Midland Bank 2-0 at Park Lane and then lost 1-3 at Beckton United another Spartan League side.
1982-83 and Ford United played host to Vauxhall Motors from Luton , winning 2-1 and Canvey Island were at home to Hazells from Aylesbury , winning 1-0. Maldon Town lost 1-3 at Highfield who played at Waltham Abbey and whose ground is now housing.
1983-84 and Witham Town were beating South Midland outfit, Pirton 3-0 but Stansted ( the winners ) opponents are all still with us in one form or another.
In season 1986-87 , Witham Town were triumphant over Peterborough League club, Baker Perkins but Eton Manor were not so lucky losing to LBC Ortonians, of the same league, 2-3.
In 1989-90 Woodford Town drew 3-3 at Spartan League , Southgate Athletic and won the replay 1-0. Their opponents ground could not be developed which is why the club folded. Much the same could be said of Woodford Town, the latter going out 0-2 to another with that same problem, Collier Row in Round one .
It is interesting to note in complete contrast to the rest of this story, that in that same year, Brightlingsea United lost 0-2 to Stevenage Borough, now, of course, in the Football League !
So we enter the 90’s and present century and I am pleased to say that the number of clubs folding has dramatically receded but In 1990-91 Ford United lost 1-2 to Elliott Star ( Herts County ) and in the 5th Round of 1994-94 Basildon United beat Eastwood Hanley from the Potteries 3-2. In 1995-96 Sawbridgeworth Town were beaten 2-1 by Furness ( formerly Danson Furness and then Danson ( Bexley Borough ) from Kent, after a 1-1 draw and finally , In 2003-04 Brentwood Town lost 1-3 to Brook House who look like they have changed their name to AFC Hayes which doesn’t really count ... but that’s another story !