Tuktuk Day 34

One of the most popular “days” on the tour so far was Day Eleven. It was Christian Obray’s article about “The Rise Of Non-League Football.” I thought it was so good and so timely that I asked him if I could reproduce it and he kindly agreed. We have kept in touch and I am delighted to confirm that his blog Through the Turnstile is now live. He kindly (again!) allowed me to reproduce part of it. It’s a great read about Chatham Town a club living in the shadows of a “big” club (Gillingham – well they WERE in the Championship!) and how they are not only surviving but growing.

He says, ”


Welcome to Through the Turnstile, this series of features are intended to shine the light on some of non-league’s leading stars. The series is not intended to be about me, I am merely the impartial host who will be putting them all together for you to hopefully enjoy!

During each feature we will look back at the history of the club and the journey they have taken to be where they are today. The infrastructure at the club including the stadium, the staff, key players and the fan base. Of course, one of the main interest points is the matchday! So on every club we will look at what this looks like and how much £ it would set you back, from your ticket, a programme and a pint.

Finishing off with the clubs plans for the future. So without further ado let’s kick off the series with my very own hometown club: Chatham Town.

A brief history of the Club

Chatham Town Football Club, based in Kent, England, currently competes in the Isthmian Premier Division and is known as “The Chats.” Established in 1882 as Chatham United, the club has a rich history, including hosting the debut matches for both Portsmouth and West Ham United. Initially playing at “The Lines,” they moved to Maidstone Road Ground in 1889, prompted by a successful FA Cup quarter-final run. This move influenced the Football Association’s decision to mandate fully enclosed grounds for future FA Cup matches.

Throughout its history, Chatham experienced financial challenges, voluntary relegations, and league changes. After World War I, they won the Kent Victory Cup and re-joined the Southern League. Financial strains led to withdrawals, voluntary relegations, and a return to amateur status in the 1930s. Post-World War II, the club merged with Shorts F.C., adopting the name Chatham Town. Shifting between leagues, they joined the Southern League in 1983, but financial……

Now to read the rest CLICK HERE You are going to love the burger table! (Shout out for Woodley United!)”

As always, I hope that you will consider a donation however small to support FC Deportivo Galicia and/or Prostate Cancer UK If everybody chipped in £1 I would easily hit my target of £10,000 and life would be easier in West London whilst the charity continued their great work. A HEARTFELT thanks, if you can. If you can’t you can still help massively by sharing this page about the work of Prostate Cancer. Thanks


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