These articles are published in the Slough Town FC programme. The Rebels play in the National League South in a swanky new ground. I’ve been supporting Slough since the beginning of time despite now living in Brighton.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011


Printed in the Southern League Central Division game v Barton Rovers
on Tuesday 13th September 2011. We won 2-1 in front of 212

Non League Day, the FA Cup and Slough playing on a Sunday. So instead
of a long train journey, a chance to go and support one of the numerous
local clubs near my home. The sheer amount of football clubs playing a
decent level of football is just staggering. I can get to eight clubs
who entered this years FA Cup on a Brighton day saver bus pass. Just
how do they all survive?
After having tea with the local vicar three of us head for the train
to Shoreham for a bit of FA Cup Extra Preliminary round action.
Unfortunately my powers of persuasion and pleading with people that
this was Non League Day with no Premiership or Championship football
excuses fell on mostly deaf ears, with ignored texts and feigning
death. In the end I only persuade my long term Albion season ticket
holder mate and his daughter to visit Middle Road to watch the
Musselmen take on Lancing.
Shoreham is one of those places just outside Brighton that I often
just pass through. The high street, a mix of old and pedestranised new
is very pleasant with a view of the harbour and a chance for all sorts
of food and beer sampling.
Pity we picked the real ale old boozer that wouldn’t let kids in.
We arrived too late to buy a programme with a healthy looking crowd of
over 120 including quite a few opposing fans. Not surprising, as you
couldn’t get much more local than this (well you could if Shoreham
played Southwick) and on bank holiday Monday this very same fixture
had seen Shoreham lose 3-0. For the first 40 minutes it looked like it
would go the same way then just before half time Shoreham’s Charlie
Walker scored the only goal changing the whole dynamics of the game.
Confidence is a wonderful thing and the goal was just what Shoreham
needed. They were a much better side in the second half missing plenty
of chances to put the game to bed. In the end it stayed 1-0 and
Shoreham pocked £1,500 for winning on top of their £750 from the
previous round and a 1st qualifying round tie with Thamesmead Town.
Premiership clubs might not care for the competition but it matters a
lot clubs further down the footballing pyramid.
Brighton’s new ground and emerging strength is enticing people who
haven’t thought about the Albion for years. This will no doubt affect
the already sparse crowds at this level. To their credit the Albion
were encouraging people to support Non League Day, I just think some
of the smaller clubs could do a bit more to help themselves.
I know that’s easy said than done. The archetypal bloke behind the bar
at Shoreham who has to put his hand to everything said about 10 people
help run the club and the players just get expenses. They also have
six other teams playing under their banner. But money is always tight
and they have no shirt sponsorship. Shoreham struggled last season
with crowds averaging around 50 and they would have been relegated if
it hadn’t been for ground grading regulations.
The club founded in 1892 have spent most of their time yo-yoing
between Sussex County League One and Two. But these clubs play an
important role in our communities and we should all do our bit to
encourage friends and families to switch off Sky or ditch Saturday
shopping and come and support the Rebels. You never know they might
even enjoy themselves.


Blogger brighton rebel said...

After i wrote my blog, got this lovely reply from Shoreham chairman.

Hi Warren and my apologies for the late reply.

Thank you so much for sending me this article. It reads very well and it just about sums us up quite frankly.

I have sent you a team photo. I'm the handsome (?) chap in the white shirt in the middle. Ha!

I was a sponsor at Shoreham FC in the early 90's and after 2 years I went on to become a director of Ryman League Worthing F, when the late Beau Reynolds was the Chairman. I did that for 6 years and then had a break.

In late 2006 the directors of Shoreham FC had felt that after 4 years together they had taken the club as far as they could and wanted out really. They contacted me (as an old sponsor and businessman) and so I came back and bought the shares. I took over as Chairman in January 2007 and have been here ever since.

Two years ago I joined the Sussex County League Management Committee and also became a (blue blazer) FA Councillor. However, this year I stood for the second time as a director of Sussex FA and won by 7 votes, so as you can see I'm a glutton for punishment.

You are quite right, we have 7 teams in all and about 200 local boys playing at the club. We did have a girls team too, but we lost them 2 seasons ago.

You were right on the number of fans too. Around 50 each week and I know each and every one by name and their families too. Real non-league stuff!

Thanks again for the article and my best wishes to you.

Kind regards

Shoreham F C

Mathew Major

7:52 pm


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