Wednesday, 18 March 2015

4 games, 3 counties, 3 days

With having booked the weekend off from work I arranged to visit a friend of mine, Colin Buchanan who lives in Cheltenham. We normally try to meet up a few times a year with each of us heading north or south alternatively. After having a few hours sleep on Friday morning I left Leicester around 2pm to make the eighty mile journey, stopping off in Stow on the Wold on route for a coffee. I was also reminded to avoid using my normal route into Cheltenham with it being the final day of the Gold Cup festival. I timed it well as I arrived at Colin's house about five minutes before he arrived home from work. This gave us enough time to head to game one of the weekend in the neighbouring county of Wiltshire.

Calne Town 2-1 Corsham Town
Western League Division 1
Bremhill View, Calne, SN11 9EE

After finding a takeaway in the town we arrived at the ground around half an hour before the 7.45pm kick off. The social club was outside the ground and we didn't venture inside, but instead paid the admission and went into the ground itself. The stand, tea hut and changing rooms are all on the far side of the ground and it was one that I liked. I had also brought with me my new camera and lens and it would be the first time that I had tested them under floodlights. Unfortunately Colne's are not the best and there were several bulbs out, thus making it quite dark in places and it made taking photographs very difficult. During the game I also had the pleasure of chatting to Corsham Town's photographer John Cuthbertson. 

The game itself was a typical local derby that was played at a very fast pace, and was an enjoyable one for the neutrals. A report on the game can be found on Calne's website @

Admission: £5
Programme: £1
Badge: £3.50
Attendance: 156

For our game on Saturday we had originally agreed on Minehead, but I re-checked some fixtures midweek and found that Lyme Regis had a home game, and we then changed our plans and headed to the south coast some hundred and ten miles away. We left Cheltenham around 8.30am and made a stop in Taunton for some breakfast and I ticked off the two JD Wetherspoon outlets in the town, The Perkin Warbeck and The Coal Orchard in the process. With time on our side we had another pit-stop, this time in Chard and I ticked my third JDW of the day, The Cerdic. The sun then came out as we left Chard and we arrived at the small coastal resort of Lyme Regis at approximately 12.30pm. A couple of hours were spent having a walk and having something to eat before going to the ground. 

Lyme Regis 4-1 Exeter University 5ths
Devon & Exeter League Division 3
The Davy Fort, Charmouth Road, Lyme Regis, DT7 3DU

The ground is one that had been on my "to do" list for a few years now as I had been on holiday in the area a couple of times, and both times Lyme did not have a home fixture. It (the ground) is located in the eastern part of the town on the Charmouth Road and parking is at a premium. Fortunately there is a public car park next door for any overspill. Space at the ground is at a premium with it feeling hemmed in. The wooded clubhouse and changing rooms are located behind the near goal and there is an overhang providing a bit of cover. The pitch is railed off on along the right hand touchline only, though the club have plans to increase this behind both goals. Also there are a few pub style benches along the right hand side between the clubhouse and dugouts. 

The game was really enjoyable with some good football played by both sides. The Uni were on top for pretty much all of the first half but only had one goal to show for their efforts and that came from the penalty spot. In my opinion the Lyme keeper was very fortunate to only be shown a yellow card for the infringement. Against the run of play late on in the half Lyme undeservedly equalised. The second half was a totally different game altogether as the home side dominated proceedings from start to finish and deservedly scoring three goals, one of which was from the penalty spot which resulted in the Uni's number 4 being sent off.

Admission: by donation - gave £2
Programme: 12 page issue given away free
Badge: £3 - sold out but another batch on order
Tea / coffee: 60p
Attendance: between 65 and 75 pitch side with more in the social club

After leaving the coast we made good time heading back north, stopping for petrol and a drink in Bridgwater en route and got back to Cheltenham around 8pm.

Sunday morning saw us go our separate ways as I had two more games planned before I went home. I only chose them as I knew someone from Stourbridge who would be going to both of them. First up was a half hour drive to the village of Chedworth.

Chedworth Cavaliers 2-0 Hucclecote
Gloucester & District Sunday League Division 2
Chedworth Vilage Hall, Chedworth, Gloucestershire, GL54 4NQ

This is a one pitch venue that is located on the western edge of the village and if it was a nice sunny day, it would have been a very pleasant morning. Instead the weather was overcast and there was a biting cold wind for good measure. The game wasn't the best and had an end of season feel about it. Chedworth are going for promotion while Hucclecote sit at the bottom of the table. Two goals in the opening fifteen minutes ended this as a contest and that pretty much sums the proceedings up.

Admission / programme: none
Attendance: 11

Afterwards we and another hopper from Stroud headed to the northern edge of Gloucester for our second game of the day, going our separate ways for food before meeting up again.

Trident 3-0 The Village
Stroud Charity Cup Section D Semi Final
Plock Court Playing Fields, Plock Court, Gloucester, GL2 9DW

The Stroud Charity Cup has about six sections to it and they are competed for by Saturday sides, but a lot of the games are played on Sundays. The two teams in action are members of the Stroud & District League with Trident top of division five and The Village top of division 6. Plock Court is about an uninspiring venue as you can get - a vast expanse of open space. consisting of numerous football pitches. The pitch that this game was played on was typically the furthest away from the car park!!!

The game was another decent one with the home side creating plenty of chances but had only converted one of them by half time. Two more chances were taken in the second half and they ran out deserved winners to book their place in the final. 

Admission / programme: none
Attendance: 12

Social media / websites:
Calne Town - twitter - official website
Corsham Town - twitter - official website
Western League - twitter - official website

Lyme Regis - twitter - official website
Exeter University - twitter - official website
Devon & Exeter League - twitter - official website - fa full time site

Gloucester & District Sunday League - football.mitoo site

Trident - twitter
Stroud & District League - official website - fa full time site
Stroud Charity Cup - official website
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