Tag: Leyton

Leyton FC’s Unfathomable Past, Unsustainable Present & Uncertain Future

The easy option would be to say that the resignation of Leyton FC from Division One North of the Ryman League brings to an end the story of London’s second-oldest senior football club, but nothing in the history of this particular club has ever been as straightforward as we might expect it to be. The story of this particular club (or the several that have played under its name) is an extraordinary story that has taken in four reformations, a trip to the High Court over a dispute regarding the right to claim the club’s expansive history and a VAT fraud case that imprisoned the club’s chairman. What is not in doubt is that the original Leyton FC was founded in 1868. Crisis of some sort or other seems to have been a recurring theme of the history of the club, with it having been disbanded in the late 1890s, 1911 and 1914, but it was the incarnation that played in the Athenian League from the 1920s on that hit the purple patch in the clubs history, winning the league in 1929 and the FA Amateur Cup in 1927 and 1928. After another briefly successful period in the mid-1960s – they won the Athenian League again in 1966 and 1967 – they merged with the Jewish club Wingate FC, and played as Leyton-Wingate until 1992 before merging again, this...

Read More

Frozen Out

Looking at the average attendance tables for the Ryman League Division One North doesn’t make for especially happy reading if you are interested in the well-being of the non league game in North-East London. The four smallest clubs in the division are all from that particular neck of the woods, with Ilford, Waltham Forest, Redbridge and Leyton all struggling to break into three figures for their home matches. The obvious question to ask at this point is how they keep going, and the reasonable answer to this is that they it with enormous difficulty, and with the considerable support of extremely dedicated volunteers. The truth of the matter, however, is that survival for these clubs has been an uphill battle for decades. Leyton Football Club is, after Cray Wanderers, the second oldest football club in Greater London. They were founded in 1868, and have spent the vast majority of the last 140 years playing in the not inconsiderable shadow of the likes of Leyton Orient, West Ham United and Tottenham Hotspur. There were occasional successful times amongst the bread and butter years of ekeing out their own survival. They won the FA Amateur Cup in 1927 and 1928, and were regular winners of the Athenian Football League before being elected into the Isthmian League in 1982. The club had merged to become known as Leyton-Wingate in 1975, but the...

Read More