Friday 26 August 2022

Diss Town - Brewers Green Lane

Diss Town FC
Brewers Green Lane
IP22 4QP

01379 651223

Ground Number: 1101
Friday 26th August 2022
Diss Town 2-0 AFC Sudbury Reserves
Eastern Counties D1 North


The club was established in 1888 following a suggestion from the local cricket club, with whom the football club initially shared the ground on Roydon Road. They joined the Norwich & District League in 1906 and then the Norfolk and Suffolk League in 1935. In 1964, they became founder members of the Anglian Combination, winning Division 1 in 1968 and 1974 and the Premier Division in 1977 & 1979. They moved to their current home in 1983 and this allowed them to make the step up to semi-pro football. In 1988, they were founder members of the Eastern Counties Division 1. A 3rd place in their debut season was a great start and in 1992, they were champions. This won them promotion to the Premier Division and then in 1996, they achieved their best-ever finish when they finished as runners-up to Halstead Town. Diss Town remained in the Premier Division until 2015 when only Ely City kept them off the bottom of the table. The club had been struggling for a while and despite 7th and 6th place finishes in their first two seasons, they've since been a fixture in the bottom half.

Diss Town have been knocked out of the FA Cup at the first hurdle in the vast majority of campaigns. They've reached the 2nd Qualifying Round on three occasions. The most recent occasion was 2002 when they beat Gogenhoe United and Romford before losing to Chertsey Town. The FA Vase has been a far happier hunting ground. During the 1993/94 season, they won the competition. Starting in the 2nd Round, Tring Town were first up, Diss Town drew 0-0 down in Hertfordshire before winning the replay 2-0. They then won 2-1 at Ford United before another win on the road, 3-0 at Torpoint Athletic. Two home wins, 2-0 over Kings Lynn and 1-0 over Tiverton Town saw them reach the semi-final where they were paired with Atherton Laburnam Rovers. Winning 3-1 at home but losing 2-0 away meant the sides could not be separated. The home leg saw their record attendance of 1,731 on 19th March 1994. A replay at VS Rugby was needed where Diss Town came through 2-1. They beat Taunton Town by the same scoreline in the final at Wembley Stadium to lift the trophy. 13,450 saw them equalise in injury time and then score a winner in extra time. One famous name in their side was a youngster called Paul Warne who now manages Rotherham United.

Local cup wins include the Norfolk & Suffolk League Cup three times, the Anglian Combination Cup four times, the Norfolk Senior Cup four times and the Norfolk Junior Cup twice. The town of Diss is located near the Suffolk - Norfolk border and has a population of around 7,500. The town's name is from 'dic' - an Anglo-Saxon word meaning ditch or embankment. Famous people from the town include footballers Declan Rudd and Matthew Upson.


I'm always keen to do some Friday night football and on this day, there were plenty of choices. The best game, at least in my opinion, was the nearest to home. It was also a revisit to Slough Town for the FA Vase tie between Langley and Chalfont St Peter. There were two new grounds at Diss Town and Barry Town United. I'd have Colin as a passenger again and so left it up to him to choose. I gave him the options on Friday and by Tuesday he had made up his mind. It was to be Diss Town, I believe the only non-league team to be mentioned in a Specials song, in this case, Ghost Town. I'd been out on Wednesday and so did all the planning and researching on Thursday so I could get a heads up of what to expect. I was originally planning on going home before the game but with warnings about the traffic situation, I opted to leave an hour earlier and go from work.

However, it was still easier to go via Amersham and Colin was bringing his mate Joe (or Twiglet as he was nicknamed for some reason) who I'd met a couple of times before. The day of the game, was as ever, a very busy one at work but there was no way I was staying any longer than I needed to. I was away from work at 3.15 and picked Colin and Joe up at 3.45. It was a slow journey over to Diss thanks to traffic. It was a strange old route and we got there at 6.50. We parked up and then headed into town, going to the Happy Palace Chinese where I had salt and pepper chips and Thai Green Curry. It was decent, not the best but above average. I'd loved to have had a look around the town and a sit-down but time was running out. We walked back to the ground, getting there at 7.30 and paying £6 to get in.

Diss Town had a mixed start to the season. They drew 1-1 against Holland in their last game and had beaten Whittlesey Athletic 2-1. However, the game in between had not gone well with a 6-1 defeat at Framlingham Town. AFC Sudbury had played a game less, winning 2-1 at Holbeach United but losing to Norwich CBS 3-1. In my usual game of matching the kits to other teams, it was Kosovo v Netherlands. AFC Sudbury had the better of the game early on and they came close with a free kick. All Diss could manage were a couple of offside attacks but they soon got into the game. They made it 1-0 on 37 minutes when a free kick was swung in and George Erith got on the end of it with a header. Diss made it 2-0 in the second half, a ball was played through and Kyle Baker finished from just inside the area. AFC Sudbury probably deserved a goal but the Diss keeper Alex Curl was in top form and earned himself man of the match.

No official attendance had been announced at the time of writing this, but I'd estimate a couple of hundred at least. The tea bar promised great things with burgers and sausages from a local butcher. However, they'd sold out long before I got to the front of an excruciatingly slow-moving queue. It was sad to see the club miss out on vital sales and it was not the fault of the guy at the tea bar who was on his own. I fancied some chips but gave up in the end. It was nice to meet some other hoppers including 'Tractor' who was a Clacton fan and who was great company. We left around 9.50 and thankfully the journey home was far easier. I dropped Colin and Joe off at 11.45 and got home myself just before midnight having enjoyed my day.


BREWERS GREEN LANE is a superb venue for the level and is good enough for step 3 football, if not step 2. There's a 200-seater stand plus a covered terrace behind the goal that could hold at least 500. In addition, there's some more cover on the other side, although this is currently being used for storage. There's a smart bar with a limited range of drinks and a tea bar which promises much if you get there early enough. There's plenty more in town which is around a 10-15 minutes walk away. I'm not sure about public transport, but there's plenty of parking available. Overall, this friendly club are well worth a visit.

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