Rain, Rain, Rain
The season started full of promise at the beginning of September with our two Challenge Matches. In the senior match a single goal was enough for Frenford Senior to defeat Bishops Stortford Swifts, and in the Reserve match Takeley won a nine-goal thriller at Kelvedon Hatch.
It did not however take long for the season to start going downhill. 16 matches were lost on just the third Saturday of the season due to the Petrol Crisis, and then, on 14th October it started to rain; and it rained; and it rained; and it rained. By the end of October we had lost almost 50 matches and by the end of December over 200. It quickly became evident that the Denny King Memorial Cup, in only its second season, could not be contested due to all the matches that already had to be re-arranged, and it was also decided that no Saturdays could be made available for the various Charity Cup Competitions. As if the rain were not enough, we then lost 3 pitches due to the foot and mouth epidemic. Despite all of these problems, at the request of the clubs at a meeting in March, we continued playing.
In their first season with us Canning Town won both Reserve Division Three and Senior Division Two. Manford Way were runners up in Senior Division Two and winners of Reserve Division Two. Wanstead Town just failed to get one of the top two places in Senior Division two but were runners up in Reserve Division Three. Runners Up in Reserve Division Two were Epping who will be taking their place in the top division for the first time since the divisions were split back in 1982.
With a tremendous record of 21 wins and only one defeat, to Great Baddow on a stormy night at Sandon, Linford Wanderers capped their first season with us by winning Senior Division Three. After dropping out of Senior Division Two last season, Broomfield have bounced straight back by being runners up in Division Three.
Rayleigh Town, after being runners up for the past two seasons, finally managed to push Bishops Stortford Swifts into second place and became Senior Division One Champions for a record sixth time. Added to this, they overcame Takeley to retain the Essex Intermediate Cup in an eventful final that, as last season, went to extra time. In their third County Final in three years, Bishops Stortford Swifts carried off the Herts Intermediate Cup, the first team to retain the trophy in over 30 years.
Bishops Stortford Swifts Reserves completed the double winning both Reserve Division One the Reserve Division Cup. Sandon Royals won the Senior Cup Final that was held at Roots Hall.
Our representative side remain undefeated having won their only match of the season when they played White Notley at the opening of their new facilities.
Over 500 matches were lost due to the bad weather and over 70 matches were not played. The essex Intermediate Cup Final was called off twice and eventually played on 1st June.