Not for the first time and (hopefully) not for the last, we’ve been trawling through the British Library archives. Our aim, obviously, is to join up yet more dots in Stevenage Football Club’s history. And what better excuse is there than Boro’s big four-zero? After ploughing through copies of The Comet, here’s the latest in our series of articles from Boro’s early days. The story here? “Boro’ Sound Out Athenian League”.
As is always the case, we aren’t looking to take credit from our local media folks and their writers. This is very much the creation and publication of The Comet, though its writer does not get a byline. It is the tale of a Stevenage team looking to get back into a regular programme of football. It was, as history tells us however, an unsuccessful attempt by the Boro’ hierarchy. No place in the Athenian League was forthcoming; Boro’ left waiting a further three years for league football. Mind you, it’s not as if things didn’t fall into place in the end for us. Right?
Article: Boro’ Sound Out Athenian League
Officials of Stevenage Borough FC have met with officers of the Athenian League with a view to the newly-formed club playing in the competition next season.
But there is little doubt that the Borough will face a good deal of rivalry for an Athenian League place.
The league will be revamped next season, because many Athenian League members (including Letchworth GC) are joining the third division of the Isthmian League for season 1977-78.
The Athenian League still have 16 of their clubs remaining and plan to have just one division next season.
At the moment it’s undecided whether that division will be 16, 18 or 20 clubs strong, but there are plenty of would-be applicants should it be increased by two or four clubs.
The Stevenage Borough club are at present without a ground; but have been assured of every assistance from the town’s Borough Council to get the club launched.
Says the Borough’s secretary, Mr Marshall Cooper: “Athenian League officials have been impressed by our attempts to revive senior football in Stevenage and I’m sure that if Broadhall Way had been readily available to us we would have been accepted into their league without hesitation.”
The Stevenage Borough club are also making inquiries about joining other leading semi-professional leagues.
Unattributed, The Comet – 17 March 1977
Our work at the British Library has also thrown up some results from pre-United Counties League days. We’ll make sure we get them onto the site as soon as we can. Well, once we work out how we fit them in. For the time being, the 1980-1 season remains our starting place. We’ll be back to the British Library soon enough to dig out much more of our 1976-1980 history. Meanwhile, we’re still aiming to fill in the missing gaps between 1980 and 1992. If you think you can help, check out our missing match data page. Until next time…