It’s been a long path to where Boro’ now finds itself. But it’s nowhere near as long as some we’ve met on the way – like Haverhill Rovers. For the Suffolk club, however, you could say their path doesn’t compare to the thrills and spills of ours; a 40-year run that took us from the United Counties League up to the Football League. And, at some point during that run, our path and theirs just happened to cross. That was because of a single FA Vase clash – which we won – in 1984.
So, let’s go back to 1886. The big stories of the day are the first-ever Crufts dog show, the opening of the Severn Tunnel and the birth of Haverhill Rovers Football Club. But the club itself doesn’t know much about its formative years; Rovers popping up in the East Anglian League in 1906, before moving to the Essex & Suffolk Border League in 1924. They left in 1928 – but returned in 1935. What happened in the seven years between?
We don’t know.
Fast-forward to 1964 and the Rovers’ first-ever campaign in the Eastern Counties League. Over the years that followed, the club became part of the furniture in this competition. A crowning moment came in 1979 with their maiden title; edging out Great Yarmouth Town with just a point between them. It was a rare highlight too. For most of the 70s and 80s, it was more likely you’d find the club in the bottom half of the table.
Why do we know Haverhill Rovers?
Rovers never budged from the Eastern Counties League – despite that title win. So, you probably know where this is heading. It’d be the luck of a cup draw that’d pair us with the Suffolk club. And it eventually happened in the 1984-5 FA Vase First Round draw.
How to get to Haverhill Rovers – Travel Information – Distance: 42 miles
Take the A505 up towards Royston and continue as you go around the town on your way to Duxford. If you joined the A505 at the A1(M), it’ll be 23 miles until the exit you need; leaving the A505 for The Abingtons exit.
Go across the A11 and then take the third exit onto Pampisford Road. Two miles later, turn right onto the A1307. Remain on the A1307 until you enter Haverhill, taking the first exit at a roundabout by Tesco for the A143. Turn right onto Chalkestone Way after 0.4 miles.
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