GIANTS ONCE IN OUR FOLD AT THE START
A little more history on our former clubs now operating in higher circles
My article last week on Tiverton Town and Exmouth Town raised quite a lot of interest so I thought it worth a mention that we were also the original base for three other major clubs, not least Exeter City first team. The Grecians first ever season as Exeter City, having changed their name from Exeter United, was in 1904/05 when they won the East Devon Senior League as we were known then, but the St James Park club immediately left to join the Plymouth & District League which was considered far stronger. That was followed by Southern League membership and eventually Football League status, way above our grass roots levels.
Over the years that followed Exeter City have entered their reserve team and Colts teams into the Exeter & Distict League, but we still have the proud record of being their founder League and them winning their first ever championship.
Over the years we have also had the pleasure of having the first teams of Bideford Town currently at Southern League status and both Barnstaple Town & Ilfracombe Town in the Western League) but they did not start with us. Those clubs also moved on some 50 years ago when the Western League came into its own.
Willand Rovers operating in the Southern League, spent their early years in the Tiverton & District League (now defunct) so we cannot claim to be their original base league either, but they have run a reserve team within our ranks since then.
However many may be surprised to know that Buckland Athletic began their adult years in our League (1987) and we were sorry to see them leave just 23 years ago after winning the 1999/2000 Premier title. Buckland have become a giant club since then and an example to all and what can be achieved.
Thursday 16th November 2023