Stonham Aspal’s Golden celebrations
FOOTBALL: A call has gone out to all members and supporters of Stonham Aspal – both past and present – to join in the club’s celebrations to mark their half century membership of the Suffolk and Ipswich League.
A special reunion and game is being held on Saturday July 24 (kick-off 3pm) when a current Stonham side takes on an ‘Old Boys’ XI featuring stars from yesteryear at Delsons Meadow.
The well respected club is hoping to attract as many ‘old boys’ as possible, covering players, officials and supporters.
Stonham ran a cricket section until the mid-seventies and former players and their officials will also be made most welcome.
There will be a ‘memorabilia’ marquee packed with photographs, match programmes etc with the bar open from 2.00pm and refreshments available throughout the afternoon.
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Long serving club official and organiser with former chairman Chris Buckle, Eric Cousins said: “We are looking to reminisce about the good times – and the not so good!
“We have been a yo-yo club between senior and junior football in recent years and it’s been a roller coaster ride. We look forward to seeing some club legends.”
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Stonham’s reserves have reached the finals of the Suffolk Junior and Primary Cups and are currently operating in Intermediate B. The A team are in Division Four having won Division Five in 2009 and also the Club Colours Cup.
“We have received a tremendous amount of player loyalty, and have four founder members still serving on an active committee - Andy Warnes, Chris Buckle, Brian Baker and Rodney Garrard,” added Cousins, who has served as secretary since 1966.
The club has seven SIL meritorious award winners, while John Hearn has been a club official since 1977 and groundsman George Baker has been looking after the pitches since the mid-seventies.
On the playing side Martyn Moye will be celebrating his 20th year with the club this season, and for many of those he has been leading scorer.
Cousins can be contacted on 07733 110820.
Stonham Aspal FC fact file
1959: formed by pupils of Stonham Aspal School, joining the then Ipswich & District League the following year. Schoolmaster Norman Davies was the leading figure in the club’s formation.
1987: sees the untimely death of chairman club stalwart Russell Parker four years before the rise to senior football that he had put all the foundations in place.
1991: Chris Buckle takes over as chairman and he oversees the rise to senior status – the club remaining in senior football throughout his time in charge with second and third teams added.
2004: relegated to Division One; during the previous 13 years the highest finishing league position was third, while two Senior Cup finals at Portman Road against Woodbridge Town and Grundisburgh both ended in defeat.
2005: Stonham bounce straight back to senior status by winning Division One in 2005, but the yo-yo continued with relegation in 2006.
2007: Stonham win the First Division again, along with the Suffolk Junior Cup at Portman Road against Hundon. They finish a very healthy fifth in the Senior Division, but again relegation follows.
2010: Stonham miss out on promotion from Division One in the last game of the season. Paul Parker, Russell’s son, succeeded Buckle and remains chairman.
WINNER: Martyn Moye holds the Suffolk Junior Cup after winning the trophy at Portman Road in 2007. Picture: CONTRIBUTED.