Big interest in keeping Ridgeons League Division One alive

FOLLOWING publication on these pages earlier this month of concerns over the well-being of the under strength First Division of the Ridgeons League, league secretary Nigel Spurling can reveal a big interest in keeping the division going.

“I have already had clubs in touch with me with suggestions,” said Nigel.

“This shows perhaps how much some people care about the future of the competition.”

Nigel has also written to clubs and officials involved with the league to reassure them that there has been no consideration given to disbanding the First Division.

But he confirmed: “The management committee are naturally concerned at the falling number of clubs in the division and are keen to remedy the situation as quickly as possible.


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“To this end the matter has been debated at our meetings and a letter has been sent to the Step 5/6 Focus Group, which deals directly with the Football Association.

“Our long-term aim is to grow the division from its current 17 clubs back to its authorised capacity of 22 in order that there can be healthy promotion and relegation to and from our Step 7 feeder leagues.”

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In their letter to the Step 5/6 Focus Group, the Ridgeons League revealed they have six potential members playing in Step 7 leagues that have the appropriate facilities and have indicated their desire to be promoted.

‘In previous seasons we have had two clubs finish in fourth place, one by a single point and the other on goal difference, which we have not taken into our competition’, the letter went on.

‘We would ask to consider the possibility of requesting the Football Association to allow promotion from Step 7 to Step 6 for clubs with the appropriate facilities who do not finish first in their competition.

‘We believe this to be one option of avoiding the possible failing of a number of Step 6 leagues.

‘Perhaps a system allowing for the promotion of the highest finishing applicant from a Step 7 league to be promoted with the proviso that the club’s parent County FA independently assess the club’s financial probity, governance and their future financial plan for the next three years.

‘Perhaps there could be a limitation on the finishing position to say, the top half of the Step 7 league table.’

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