Welshpool Town FC
NICKNAME: The Lilywhites
GROUND: Maesydre Recreation Ground, Howell Drive, Welshpool, SY217AT
First choice: White Shirts, Black Shorts, White
Second choice Red/White Shirts, Black Shorts, red socks
League position and current form
The club was founded as Welshpool Town F.C. in 1878, but adopted other names such as Welshpool Wanderers and Welshpool Warriors - although the latter may have been a separate club. The club reformed as Welshpool AFC in 1889 after one season as Welshpool United and briefly joined the Shropshire League. After World War 1 Welshpool competed in the Central Wales Leagues winning the Central Section in 1921. Four years later in 1925 the club moved up to the First Division (North) after finishing as runners up to Llanidloes Town. After World War 2 Welshpool moved to the Welsh National League (Wrexham area). During the 1950s and 60s the club competed in various competitions including the Welsh National League, which they won in 1954/55, 1956/57, 1961/62 and 1964/65 and the Welsh National Cup in 1957/58; the Montgomeryshire Challenge Cup, winning it in 1950/51; the Knighton Charity Cup won in 1952. The Youth team won the Oswestry Minor League Cup in 1961 and 1962.
Welshpool Town competed in the Mid-Wales Challenge League and Cup from its start in 1965, winning the League in 1968, 1969, 1971, 1973, 1975, 1977 and 1980 and the Cup in 1967, 1972, 1973, 1977 and 1978. During the same period the club won The Welsh Amateur Cup/ The Welsh Intermediate Cup in 1972, 1977, 1983 and 1984 and the Central Wales Challenge Cup in 1970, 1971, 1974, 1977, 1980 and 1990. During the 1980s the club also won the Ansell’s Trophy, the Rhayader Cup and the Summer Trophy all in 1981; The Arthur Barritt Challenge Cup in 1983 and the Ernest McNamee Memorial Trophy in 1985.
The club was one of the founder members of the Cymru Alliance in 1990. They finished second in 1993 and 1996 and when champions Oswestry Town were not eligible for promotion, Welshpool took their place in the League of Wales in the 1996/97 season instead, finishing 17th. In the next season Welshpool Town were relegated and stayed in the Alliance until winning the competition in 2002 to regain Welsh Premier status. In the 2002/03 season they finished next to bottom, but appealed against relegation to the FAW and were reinstated in the League for 2003/04. In the 2006/07 season, the club finished 4th in the Welsh Premier League, their highest finish in the league to date. Due to the Welsh Premier League restructure, the club lost their place in the top flight after not applying for a domestic license. Life in the Cymru Alliance was tough in the last half of the 2000s and the club was having a difficult time with changing managers. In 2008 the club had new sponsors and were renamed Technogroup Welshpool.
In the summer of 2011, the club's sponsorship agreement with Technogroup ended and the side reverted to the name of Welshpool Town Football Club. Due to the impact this had on the finances, the club opted to become fully amateur. Problems with managers continued and just two weeks before the season and the club had no manager and no registered players. However, the Spar Mid Wales League agreed to postpone the club's opening three fixtures to allow time for a new manager to be appointed and a team was pulled together in time for the opening match with title favourites Montgomery Town FC.
When Welshpool lost 10-1 to Waterloo Rovers on Boxing Day 2011, Sky presenter Jeff Stelling made a joke about the club on Soccer Saturday. A letter from the Welshpool manager explaining the club's plight was read on air by Stelling, and Soccer Saturday reporter and ex-player Chris Kamara offered to turn out for the club in their fight against relegation. Kamara made his debut on the 28th of January 2012, but could not prevent a 6-1 home defeat to Rhayader Town. Kamara was signed to the club until the end of the season, and played again against Newbridge-on-Wye on 28 March 2012. He was joined by another former player and Soccer Saturday regular, Paul Merson, who scored in the match, but Welshpool still lost 4-1. There was another change in management in 2013 and in the 2014/15 season Welshpool finished 10th in the Mid Wales League Division.
Since 2016 Welshpool Town FC has worked hard at improving its first team performance, but also at building on the success of Welshpool juniors to create an U19 and a Reserves team, both of which are seen as springboards for talented young players. The club also has a women’s team which it is very keen to develop and thus encouraging the next generation of girls to take up the sport.
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