Thatcham Town F.C.

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Thatcham Town
Thatcham Town.png
Full nameThatcham Town Football Club
Nickname(s)The Kingfishers, Blues
Founded1894
GroundWaterside Park, Thatcham
ChairmanDave Melin
ManagerJamie Leacock [1]
League Isthmian League South Central Division
2020–21 Southern League Division One South (transferred)
Website Club website

Thatcham Town Football Club is a semi-professional English football club based in Thatcham, Berkshire. They are currently members of the Isthmian League South Central Division and play at Waterside Park. The club is affiliated to the Berks & Bucks Football Association [2]

Contents

History

Thatcham Town Football Club was founded in 1894 and played friendly matches only for the first two years at "The Marsh", now known as Dunston Green. [3] The club was known as Thatcham at this time and added "Town" to its name later in 1974. [4] The club joined the Reading Temperance League in 1896 where it remained for the next fifty-seven years, winning Division Two in 1905–06. During this period, Thatcham also won the Reading Town Senior Cup, the Berks & Bucks Junior Cup in 1935–36 and was runner-up in the Reading & District Premier League. [3]

Game against Bracknell Town at Waterside Park in 2008 Chamberhouse Mill Lane - Thatcham Town FC - geograph.org.uk - 1364762.jpg
Game against Bracknell Town at Waterside Park in 2008

In 1949, the club purchased eleven acres of land off Northfield Road. This became known as Lancaster Close. Early in 1970, seven acres were sold and the proceeds used to finance the construction of a new clubhouse and dressing rooms. [3] In 1953, Thatcham became a founder member of the Hellenic League and was promoted to the Premier Division on three occasions as Division one champions in 1958–59, 1964–65 and 1972–73. [4] In 1974, the club changed its name from Thatcham. In the 1974–75 season the club won the Hellenic League Championship and the Premier Division Cup; in addition Thatcham also reached the final of the Berks & Bucks Senior Cup losing to Wycombe Wanderers. However, Thatcham was awarded the Cup by default because of a dispute between Wanderers and the Berks & Bucks FA. [3]

In 1983, floodlights were erected and were first used when Thatcham entertained Fulham at Lancaster Close in January that year. After a short stay in the Athenian League, the club spent two seasons in the London Spartan League before joining the newly formed Wessex League in 1986. In the 1988–89 season, Thatcham reached the quarter-finals of the FA Vase, losing 2–0 away at local rivals Hungerford Town. [5]

To provide improved facilities, the club moved to a new ten-acre site at Waterside Park during the 1992–93 season and a record gate for the new stadium was set when 1,400 spectators saw Thatcham lose by a single goal to Aldershot Town, the newly reformed phoenix club of former Football League team Aldershot, in the first round of the 1993–94 FA Vase. [3] [6]

Under the management of Jim Greenwood, in 1994-95, the club set a Wessex League and club record when they went thirty-three league games unbeaten and won the Wessex League Cup beating Fleet Town in the final. The following season, in 1995–96, Jim Greenwood led Thatcham to the league title. The following season saw the club's best ever FA Cup run, reaching the Fourth Qualifying Round after away victories against Southern League Premier Gloucester City and Bashley, of the Southern League South. Thatcham eventually succame to Isthmian League side Boreham Wood. In 1997, the club reached the Final of the Wessex League Cup for the sixth time in eight years, winning the Cup for the fourth time. [3]

In 2002–03, Thatcham was awarded the FA Community Standard Charter, the first club at this level in Southern England to earn this award. Two seasons later, under new manager Jason Braidwood, the club reached three local cup finals, winning two of them, and finished third in the League. In the 2005–06 season, the club went one better and was runner-up to Winchester City and, with the club meeting FA ground-grading requirements, it joined the Southern League in Division One South & West. In the 2008–09 season, his first full season in charge, manager Gary Ackling guided the club to winning the Basingstoke Senior Cup. [3]

In June 2010, Thatcham appointed Colin Millard as manager. With over half of the squad departed, many to its local rival Hungerford Town, and a reduction in the club's playing budget, Millard had the difficult task of rebuilding the squad for the 2010–11 season. [3] Millard left the club in October 2010, and Ackling returned to manage the club. [7] In April 2011, Thatcham Town beat Tadley Calleva 4–1 to win The Basingstoke Senior Cup Final. This was played at the ground at Andover New Street. Thatcham won the competition again at the end of the 2011–12 season, beating Basingstoke New Inn 3–0 in the final. [8]

At the end of the 2013–14 season, Thatcham resigned from the Southern Football League after eight seasons in the league. The club were placed in the Hellenic Football League Premier Division, a step below their previous division on the National League System ladder, by the FA Leagues Committee. [9]

The 2017–18 season saw Thatcham win the FA Vase, [10] beating the club's previous best performance in the competition. [5] On 21 October, they started in the first round of the competition defeating Horsham YMCA 2–1 at Waterside Park, [11] before an 8–2 victory over Broadbridge Heath in the next round on 11 November. [12] The third round saw Sevenoaks Town fall 3–1 on 2 December, [13] while, on 6 January, Biggleswade were dispatched 2–1 in the fourth round. [14] A 2–1 victory against Bromsgrove Sporting on 3 February saw the club reach the quarter-finals, equalling the club's record performance in the competition set in 1989. [15] On 24 February, a 1–0 victory away at Melksham Town put the Kingfishers into the semi-finals. [16] On 17 March, they beat 1874 Northwich in the first leg of the semi-final 1–0, following a fourth minute penalty from Ross Cook in front of 1,134 at Waterside Park. [17] The Kingfishers won the second leg 3–2, with a brace from Gavin James and a goal from Shane Cooper-Clark, to give them a 4–2 aggregate victory and a place in the final at Wembley Stadium. [18] [19] In the same season, Thatcham won the Hellenic Premier Division by +2 goal difference to earn promotion to the Southern League Division One.

On 10 May 2020, manager Danny Robinson resigned from his post.

Seasons

SeasonPositionTeamsPWDLFAPts
1974-75 HELL-P117322246492470
1975-76 HELL-P9163012711364543
1976-77 HELL-P1416307815336229
1977-78 HELL-P1516303720207316
1978-79 HELL-18183415712675637
1979-80 HELL-19163012612495530
1980-81 HELL-18163011127484134
1981-82 HELL-111163011613545328
1982-83 ATHEN1820388624308522
1983-84 ATHEN17*214081418657935
1984-85 LON S-P417321589543438
1985-86 LON S-P416301857673641
1986-87 WESSEX617321561153335
1987-88 WESSEX11193614715505349
1988-89 WESSEX417321778602658
1989-90 WESSEX7193615129564557
1990-91 WESSEX6203819118683268
1991-92 WESSEX3193622410854570
1992-93 WESSEX42140241061044582
1993-94 WESSEX4224225710965182
1994-95 WESSEX3224229941044496
1995-96 WESSEX121402884732792
1996-97 WESSEX3*21402659914579
1997-98 WESSEX10203816616645454
1998-99 WESSEX220382396924678
1999-00 WESSEX13214015718626952
2000-01 WESSEX6234424911815881
2001-02 WESSEX12234419817947765
2002-03 WESSEX92242181311685867
2003-04 WESSEX102242161016707258
2004-05 WESSEX-13224224135955185
2005-06 WESSEX-1222422976923794
2006-07 SOUTH-1SW6224221714706070
2007-08 SOUTH-1SW152242131019596249
2008-09 SOUTH-1SW6224220814745868
2009-10 SOUTH-1SW12224217619767257
2010-11 SOUTH-1SW5214020713704327
2011-12 SOUTH-1SW82140161410514262
2012-13 SOUTH-1SW17224210527598635
2013-14 SOUTH-1SW19224211625419958
2014-15 HELLENIC PREM1220814519606547
2015-16 HELLENIC PREM2203828641014590
2016-17 HELLENIC PREM4203834215904868
2017-18 HELLENIC PREM1203831521292598
2018-19 SOUTH-1S11203817516575856
2019-20 SOUTH 1S *1*20271845662858

Ground

Stacatruc Stadium (also known as Waterside Park)
ThatchamGround.jpg
The club's ground Stacatruc Stadium
Thatcham Town F.C.
Full nameStacatruc Stadium, Waterside Park
LocationCrookham Hill, Thatcham, Berkshire, RG19 4PA
Coordinates 51°23′29″N1°14′33″W / 51.3913°N 1.2424°W / 51.3913; -1.2424
Public transit National Rail logo.svg Thatcham
Capacity 1,500
Record attendance1,400 vs Aldershot Town (1993–94)
Opened1992
Tenants
Thatcham Town F.C. (1992–present)

Thatcham Town plays its home games at Waterside Park. The ground is located 300 metres (330 yd) south of Thatcham railway station and 250 metres (270 yd) south of the Kennet and Avon Canal and River Kennet; its location next to the two bodies of water gives the ground its name. Waterside Park is additionally 1.9 kilometres (1.2 mi) south of Thatcham town centre.

Waterside Park has a covered-seated stand at the southern side of the pitch, containing around three hundred seats, which hosts the club's offices and changing rooms. The stand is in a central position, running approximately half the length of the pitch. Amenities, such as toilets and catering, are located to the west of the main stand; the dugouts are located opposite. Supporters can stand anywhere around the pitch, with advertising boards and wooden fencing separating spectators from the pitch. The standing areas are uncovered and flat – not terraced – although a path has been tarmacked next to the barriers with grassed areas behind. The ground can be accessed through one of four turnstiles located at the south-western corner, two giving access from the west and two from the south; this enables the ground to be segregated should it be deemed necessary. Behind the main stand, there is a field which the club uses for training and other events.

The club previously played their home matches at The Marsh in Dunston Green, Brownsfield - the home of the local cricket club - and Station Road. The club moved to the current 10-acre (40,000 m2) site at Waterside Park in 1992. The record attendance at the current home is 1,400 for the visit of Aldershot Town in the FA Vase in the 1993–94 season. [3]

Support

During the 2017–18 season, Thatcham Town have averaged 114 supporters for their league home matches, with the highest league attendance being 222 against Highworth Town. [20] This was bettered in two FA Vase matches: the fifth round game against Bromsgrove Sporting drew a crowd of 701, [21] while the semi-final match against 1874 Northwich saw an attendance of 1,134. [22]

Current squad

As of 30 January 2021 [23]

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No.Pos.NationPlayer
GK Flag of England.svg  ENG Curtis Meare
GK Flag of England.svg  ENG Will Wyatt
DF Flag of England.svg  ENG Conall Bark
DF Flag of England.svg  ENG Josh Edwards
DF Flag of England.svg  ENG Andy Gunn
DF Flag of England.svg  ENG Tinashe Gwavava
DF Flag of England.svg  ENG Michael Miller(on loan at Royal Wootton Bassett Town)
DF Flag of England.svg  ENG Shemar Pettet
DF Flag of England.svg  ENG Kallum Thomas
DF Flag of England.svg  ENG Aaron Voller
MF Flag of England.svg  ENG Jordan Alves
MF Flag of Albania.svg  ALB Jack Amitaga
MF Flag of England.svg  ENG Jamal Branker
No.Pos.NationPlayer
MF Flag of England.svg  ENG Ousman Darboe
MF Flag of England.svg  ENG Alex Fragata
MF Flag of England.svg  ENG Harvey Harry
MF Flag of England.svg  ENG Kieran Jordan
MF Flag of England.svg  ENG Lamar Koroma
MF Flag of England.svg  ENG Matt Newbrook
MF Flag of England.svg  ENG Felix Prudden
MF Flag of England.svg  ENG George Smith(on loan from Hungerford Town)
FW Flag of England.svg  ENG Callum Beasley
FW Flag of England.svg  ENG Will Frank
FW Flag of England.svg  ENG Conor Lynch
FW Flag of England.svg  ENG Bradley Pagliaroli
FW Flag of England.svg  ENG Carl Self

Former players

Lawrie Sanchez is one of the better known players to have played for Thatcham. Sanchez was born in London to a Northern Irish mother and an Ecuadorian father; when it came to selecting which country to represent at international level in his playing career, he chose Northern Ireland. He played for Thatcham three times before moving on to Reading; he later won the FA Cup with Wimbledon - scoring the winning goal in the final. The former Burnley, Queens Park Rangers and Southampton striker Charlie Austin used to play for Thatcham; he is currently playing for West Bromwich Albion.

Professional players

Players who have played for Thatcham and who have played or managed in the Football League or a foreign equivalent to this level (i.e. fully professional league) are:

International players

Players who have played for Thatcham and have played or managed at full international level are:

Honours

Records

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