Saturday, 15 May 2021

Glapwell - Hall Corner

Glapwell FC
Hall Corner Stadium
Glapwell Lane
Glapwell
Chesterfield
Derbyshire
S44 5NJ

01623 821799




Ground Number: 955
Saturday 1st May 2021
Glapwell 6-0 Thorne Colliery Development
CML D1 North






GLAPWELL FC - A BRIEF HISTORY

The original club was established as Young Vanish FC (named after a local pub) in the mid-1980s but changed its name to Glapwell in 1989. With ambitious people in charge, they joined the Non-League Pyramid, starting in the Central Midlands League Division 1. They were champions in their first season, earning promotion to the Premier Division. They finished 4th the following season and went up for the second season in a row, this time to the Supreme Division. Though they finished bottom in their first season, they were not relegated and a couple of seasons later, in 1994, they were Central Midlands League champions, however, lack of facilities prevented them from earning another promotion. With the facilities now in place, a 2nd place finish behind Oakham United was good enough for promotion to the Northern Counties East Division 1. Four seasons were spent here. with Glapwell never finishing outside the top 5. At the turn of the millennium, a runners-up spot behind Goole was good enough for promotion to the NCEL Premier. Mid-table finishes were the order of the day at first, but by 2008, a mid-table finish behind Winterton Rangers was good enough for promotion to the NCEL Division 1 South as the champions opted not to take promotion. They coped with the step up well and were always in the promotion hunt. In 2010, they narrowly missed out on promotion to the NPL Premier - after beating Kidsgrove 1-0 in the playoff semis, they lost 1-0 to Chasetown in the Final. The following season, they played the first half of the season playing at Mansfield Town's Field Mill ground, however, they were locked out of the ground at Christmas and spent the second half of the season back at Hall Corner. Following a dispute with the local Parish Council, they were forced to resign from the NPL despite a 9th place finish. They dropped to the Central Midlands League North Division and after varying degrees of success, were champions in 2016. However, the story did not have a happy ending. Previous vandalism to the floodlights at the ground meant they were not eligible for promotion and a mass exodus of players and management led to the club folding.


The FA Cup was first entered in 1997, but their debut saw a 6-1 defeat at Bedlington Terriers. In 2007, Glapwell enjoyed their best ever run in the competition. Dudley Town Stone Dominoes, Rugby Town and Market Drayton Town were beaten before a 3-0 defeat to Corby Town in the 3rd Qualifying Round. Their debut in the FA Trophy saw them beat Leamington and Sutton Coldfield Town before a defeat to Skelmersdale United in the 3rd Qualifying Round. Glapwell also reached the 2nd Round of the FA Vase in 1997, losing 3-0 at Stewart & Lloyds Corby in 2007. In terms of local cups, Glapwell won the Derbyshire Senior Cup in 1997 with a giant-killing of higher league Matlock Town on penalties. Famous players to turn out for the former club include Chris Waddle, Dean Gordon, Alan O'Hare and Gary Mills amongst others.


The village of Glapwell is situated between Mansfield and Chesterfield and has a population of just over 1,500. Amenities include a small shop and post office, as well as two pubs/restaurants. One of these, the Young Vanish lent its name to the original club and originally came from the name of a champion racehorse from the 19th century. There is also a cricket club in the village. The football club was reformed in 2020 and was accepted into the Central Midlands League Division 1 (step 8). Dave Turner was appointed manager with Lee Fletcher as assistant manager. The most notable player was former Football League player Ross Etheridge, a goalkeeper who made 21 appearances for Accrington Stanley and  6 for Doncaster Rovers between 2015 and 2018. He is from the area and his Dad Neil Etheridge also played for the club in the 1990s. At just 26, he is a notable coup and played in my last visit with Wycombe Wanderers to Accrington Stanley in March 2016 when our sides shared a 1-1 draw.

 

MY VISIT

The plan for this Saturday was made early for once, on the previous Sunday. It was looking like a blank midweek for me, as the few clubs that had games at half-decent grounds had requested no fans. Happily, this was scheduled to be the last week of this ludicrous nonsense but I still wanted to do one last game under the restrictions. The Saturday would no doubt have loads of options, but I didn't fancy the hassle of checking whether we were allowed in or not. I checked and was glad when I found that Glapwell were at home to Thorne Colliery. I already knew that fans were allowed there, what with it being council-owned. I'd had an aborted visit there a couple of weeks ago when Newark Town pulled out of my intended game with a few hours to go. It was most frustrating as I didn't notice until an hour before the game due to driving. These things happen, but I wish they'd given more notice. In the end, my only option was a game at a basic recreation ground at South Normanton, but a good day was still had. With my fellow hoppers still keen on a visit, my car was filled within a minute of posting it on our Whatsapp group and like with last week, I had to turn people down. By the weekend, the passengers had changed a bit, Paul giving up his seat for Colin who then promptly pulled out on Thursday evening. It wasn't the first time that he'd reneged when he got what he thought what was a better offer. There was also miserable news generally, thanks to our braindead government who had allowed the Indian Variant of Covid in. How, when no one is allowed to go on holiday is anyone's guess, but it's par for the course with this hopeless government and woeful opposition.


I had a couple of drinks on Friday evening, but grabbed an early night and was in bed by 9. As a consequence, I woke up at my usual work time just after 6. I had a bacon sarnie for breakfast and had planned to go on a nice walk. However, the weather had other ideas and rain made it impossible unless I wanted to get wet. Instead, I stayed in and watched some YouTube videos, leaving just after 10. Another hopper in George pulled out due to sickness, but at least I had two people left when I left at 10.25. I was with Anwar 25 minutes later and then Thomas 10 minutes after that. It was slow getting out of Aylesbury as ever, but once we got on the M1 it was a good journey. That was, until a small delay a couple of junctions before we got off. We went to the same chippy as last time, the Frying Squad in South Normanton. I had Southern Fried Chicken burger and chips for £2.50 which was great. We got to the ground at 1.40 but had to wait outside until 2 to go in due to the risk assessment. This was fine by me and I was glad that Joseph of Groundhopping FC Youtube channel was also coming to the game. I met fellow hoppers Turnip Blade and Jack outside and also chucked £3 in the donation in the bucket at the turnstiles. We had a nice chat with Joseph while we waited for kick-off. Before the start, there was a minute of applause for 9-year-old Jordan Banks who had been tragically killed by lightning whilst training for his kids' team near Blackpool in the week.


Glapwell were sitting in third place in the table and were generally in good form. They'd won five and lost two of their games in the league.  Since the resumption of football after a long break, they'd won 4-0 at today's opponents Thorne Colliery Development, 3-0 at Ollerton Town Reserves and 2-1 at Sheffield Reserves in their latest game. The latest win was especially impressive as their opponents had not lost any of their eight league games up to that point. However, their home form was disappointing, with a 4-0 loss against 780 JLC (a team from the John Leggott College) and 2-1 against Sheffield Reserves. The visitors Thorne Colliery Development were sitting in 5th and were also in decent form since the restart. As well as their 4-0 defeat at home to today's opponents, they'd also lost 6-1 at leaders Sheffield. On the flip side, they'd beaten Newark Town Development 5-0, 780 JLC 2-1, Harworth Colliery Reserves 3-1 as well as winning 1-0 at Ollerton Town Reserves. Glapwell dominated from start to finish and they were ahead on 8 minutes through Curtis Birchall. It was a powerful strike from outside the area and set the tone for the afternoon's proceedings. It was 2-0 on 15 minutes, a good ball across by #9 and Chaz Bradwell fired home from close range. A similar goal, this time from the other flank made it 3-0 on 22 minutes and it was Grant Mitchell (no, not Ross Kemp) with the finish this time. On 55 minutes, it was 4-0, a corner from Ben Copestake and a bullet header from Stephan Brown. Bradwell got his second from the penalty spot on 58 minutes as he converted a spot-kick awarded for a foul by the visiting keeper. On 62 minutes, it was 6-0 to Glapwell. Mitchell completing his brace after latching on to a great through ball. Thorne Colliery were in much better form in the second half, but when they did have a shot on target, they found former Accrington keeper Ross Etheridge in inspired form and couldn't find a way through.


There were 37 in attendance, one of which was thankfully Groundhopping FC - his highlights below really helped with this match report. We'd been kept in good company by Jack for most of the game, who had many a great story to tell. We left around 4.35, making good progress home whilst we listened to Southampton v Fulham and then the FA Cup Final on Radio 5. The weather was atrocious with heavy rainfall and so the last 40 or so miles on country roads was a bit of a slog. I dropped Thomas off at 6.25, Anwar off at 6.30 and got home myself at 6.55. Leicester held firm to win their first FA Cup, with the match nearly over by the time I got in. It took a fair while to sort photos and do my blog and time was tight to get everything done by the time the online quiz started at 8.15. I also had a nice dinner of faggots and chips as well as a few pints of cider.

THE GROUND

Though they may have not been perfect landlords in the past, Glapwell Parish Council has made a decent stadium available for affordable rent for a club in the 12th tier of English Football. Public ownership also means that fans can enjoy a visit during these illogical times, Back in 2007, there was a decent stadium in situ. Both sides had some form of cover, a small area of standing cover on the dugout side for around 50, plus around 150 seats under cover on the far side. Both ends are open to the elements. Little had changed on my second visit, bar the vandalism to the floodlights with just empty pylons in their place. Basic snacks and drinks were available on my visit due to Covid restrictions and that meant that the two pubs were closed. A tea room and coffee shop attached to an adjacent garden centre are the only hot food options at present, so it may be worth stopping en route.

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