Willenhall Town F.C.

Willenhall Town F.C.

Football club infobox
clubname = Willenhall Town

fullname = Willenhall Town Football Club
nickname = The Lockmen, The Reds
founded = 1953
ground = Noose Lane
capacity = tbc
chairman = Paul Garner
manager = Shaun Cunnington
league = Northern Premier League
Division One South
season = 2007–08
position = Southern League
Division One Midlands, 14th

Willenhall Town F.C. are a football club based in Willenhall, Metropolitan Borough of Walsall, West Midlands, England, currently playing in the Northern Premier League Division One South.


Willenhall Town was formed in 1953 by the amalgamation of two local sides, Aston Road Villa and R.A.F. Association. The club played in the Wolverhampton League from their formation until 1968, when they joined the Staffordshire County League. In 1975 they joined the West Midlands (Regional) League. They quickly won promotion to the Premier Division and then claimed the Premier Division title in 1979, pipping Lye Town to the title on goal difference. In 1981 they reached the FA Vase final at Wembley Stadium but lost to Whickham, and a year later gained promotion into the Southern Football League Midland Division. In the 1983-84 season the Reds won the title, scoring 100 goals in the process, and gained promotion to the Southern League Premier Division. Although they finished 4th in the Premier Division in their very first season, after that their performances declined until they were relegated back to the West Midlands (Regional) League in 1991. In 1994, however, the club became founder members of the new Midland Football Alliance where they were consistent mid-table finishers until the 2003-04 season when an impressive late season run saw them finish second and gain promotion to the Northern Premier League Division One.

In their very first season in the Northern Premier League the Reds made it into the promotion play-offs but were defeated. At the end of the 2004-05 season, Willenhall were switched to the Southern League Division One West, and in 2006 they were moved once again to the newly re-organised Division One Midlands. In 2006 manager Rob Smith and assistant manager Larry Chambers left the club for the position of managing AFC Telford United. Mel Eves was appointed as the new manager of Willenhall shortly afterwards.

At the end of the 2006–07 season Willenhall went to the play off final to face Bromsgrove Rovers. While the game ended 1-1 after ninety minutes, extra time saw Bromsgrove score an extra goal and gain promotion. In November 2007, Eves left the club and the first team managing duties fell to Dean Edwards for the remainder of the season. With two games remaining in the 2007–08 season, however, Edwards also parted company with the Lockmen and chairman Paul Garner and Tony Smith took charge for the last two games, winning both, against Barton Rovers and Woodford United. In May 2008 Garner announced the appointment of Shaun Cunnington as manager.

In 2008 Willenhall player Anthony Boswell was arrested by police before he ran on to the pitch to start a match for the club. Boswell was later sent to prison for possession of heroin and crack cocaine, along with former team-mate Nathan Jackson. [ [http://www.nonleaguedaily.com/news/index.php?newsmode=FULL&nid=48665 Former Willenhall Players Jailed] ]

Club records

*Best league performance: 4th in Southern League Premier Division, 1984-85
*Best FA Cup performance: 1st round proper, 1981-82
*Best FA Trophy performance: 3rd round, 2004-05
*Best FA Vase performance: Final, 1980-81


* [http://www.southern-football-league.co.uk/directory/club-directory.asp?league=midlands&team=midlandswillenhall_town.htm&section=club-directory Club profile on the Southern League website]
*fchd|name=Willenhall Town|id=WILLENHT


External links

* [http://www.thelockmen.co.uk/ Official Club Website]


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