Romford F.C.

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Full name Romford Football Club
Nickname(s) The Boro'
Founded 1876 (original club)
1929 (second incarnation)
1992 (current club)
Ground Ship Lane, (groundshare with Thurrock F.C.)
Ground Capacity 3,500 (524 seated)
Chairman Steve Gardener
Manager Paul Martin
League Isthmian League Division One North
2014–15 Isthmian League Division One North, 20th

Romford F.C. is an English football club based in Romford, East London. The club are currently members of Division One North of the Isthmian League, and play at Ship Lane in Thurrock.


The original Romford was established in 1876. They reached the quarter-finals of the FA Cup in 1880–81, but lost 15–0 at Darwen. There was no league football for them to play until they joined the South Essex League in 1896. An internal dispute saw several committee and players leave to form a new club in 1909, called Romford United and competing directly against Romford in the South Essex League at a ground literally across the road. The original club continued under new management and joined the Southern League while still playing in the South Essex League, but played only a single season before leaving.[1]

The new regime at the original club proved disastrous, being expelled from the South Essex League during the 1910–11 season and subsequently folding, leaving Romford United as the only club with the town's name. They changed to Romford Town and joined the Athenian League, but finished bottom in their first season and left at the end of their second,[2] before closing down during World War I. Romford Town had remained members of the South Essex League and returned to action after the war, but lack of support saw them withdraw in December 1920 and fold. For the rest of the 1920s the only club under the Romford name was Romford Town Thursday, playing on Thursday afternoons at Brooklands, a ground previously used by Romford's reserve team.

In 1929 the club was re-established. Taking over the use of the Brooklands stadium, they joined the London League.[3] In 1931 they moved to the Athenian League, which they won in 1935–36 and 1936–37.[1] Following World War II the club transferred to the Isthmian League. In 1948–49 they reached the final of the FA Amateur Cup, but lost 1–0 to Bromley in front of 100 000 spectators in the first final to be held at Wembley. In 1959 they switched to Division One of the Southern League. They were promoted to the Premier Division in their first season after finishing second, and won the Premier Division in 1966–67. The club made several applications to join the Football League, but were never successful in the elections. In 1974–75 they finished second bottom of the Premier Division, and were relegated to Division One. By this time the club had developed Brooklands considerably in anticipation of eventually being elected to the Football League and had large debts to show for it, and had to sell Brooklands in 1975 but remained until 1977.[3] After a season of borrowing grounds to play home matches they resigned from the Southern League [1] and folded in 1978, with the building work on a new ground barely started and hardly any money left.

In 1992 the club was resurrected for a second time and joined the Essex Senior League. They won the league in 1995–96, and in the summer merged with Collier Row (with whom they had been groundsharing since April) to form Collier Row & Romford. The new club took Collier Row's place in Division Two of the Isthmian League, which they won in their first season.[4] In the summer of 1997 they were renamed Romford.

In 2000–01 they finished second bottom of Division One and were relegated to Division Two. After finishing bottom the following season they resigned to go back to the Essex Senior League. They returned to the Isthmian League after winning the Senior League in 2008–09.

Reserve team

After being reformed in 1929, Romford entered a reserve team into Division One of the London League. During their time in the Athenian and Isthmian leagues the reserves played in the reserves sections of the leagues. When the club turned professional in 1959 they entered the reserves into the Eastern Counties League, where they spent four seasons before joining the Metropolitan League in 1963.[5] They went on to play in the Eastern Professional Football League, which they won in 1967–68, and the Essex Senior League, where they had a single season in 1974–75.[6]

The reformed club ran a side called Rom Valley Rangers in the Essex Business Houses League in 1992–93 but there was no reserve side after that until 1996, when a team was entered the Essex & Herts Border Combination, finishing runners-up in the Western Division in each of its first three seasons. Romford remained in that league until 2008.

In season 2009–10 we ran our own team in the Essex Olympian League Division 2 which we won.

In season 2012/13 the team finished 2nd in the Essex Senior League Reserve Division West repeating the feat the following season.

At the clubs Player Presentation Evening on 10 May it was announced that due to financial restraints, the Reserve and Under-18 side would not be run for the 2014/15 season.

On 8 September 2015 it was announced that the club had teamed up with Belgian 4th Division side SK Berlare with a view to working with them in the future.


The Club has led a largely nomadic existence, playing at seventeen home grounds during its history although most of these have been emergency arrangements when their established home ground was unavailable for various reasons. When the Club reformed in 1992 it began playing at the Hornchurch Stadium, before moving to Ford United's Rush Green ground in 1995. In April 1996 they moved to Collier Row's Sungate ground, and the clubs merged during the summer. The spell at Sungate was fraught with problems and there were frequent and protracted periods when Romford had to borrow other grounds to play home matches owing to problems with the facilities at Sungate. In December 2001 they left Sungate for good and played at several different stadiums in order to complete the season. They returned to Rush Green in 2002 (as Ford United had left to groundshare with Barkingside). They remained there until 2008, when they moved to Aveley's Mill Field ground.

In 2009 it was announced that the club had been given permission to build a new stadium on the Westlands Playing Fields on London Road,[7] however building work has yet to commence.

Since 2012–13, Romford have been sharing with Thurrock F.C. at Ship Lane.


Current staff

Position Name
Manager England Paul Martin
Assistant Manager England Mark Lord
Assistant Manager England Alex Goldstone
Physiotherapist England Kate Thwaites

Current squad

Updated 6 October 2015.

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Position Player
England GK Michael Gooch
England GK Atu Ngoy

England DF Ryan Boswell
England DF Sam Burton
England DF Harry Culham
England DF Matt Frew
England DF Tom Potter
England DF George Woodward

England MF Greg Akpele
England MF Chris Barry
England MF Joe Bricknell
England MF Dan Cossington
England MF Reece Cosson
England MF Jake Giddings
No. Position Player
England MF Connor Goldstone
England MF Robbie Norris
England MF Luke Stanley
England MF Jordan Thomas
England MF George Tubey

Jamaica FW Shomari Barnwell (on loan at Clapton)
England FW Robbie Farrell
England FW Ryan Imbert
England FW Akwasi Marfo
England FW Chinedu McKenzie
England FW Nick Reynolds
England FW Joe Scott
England FW Chris Taylor

Former managers



Player records

  • Most appearances: Paul Clayton, 396, 2006–2015
  • Most goals: Tom Barnett, 111, 1962–1970
  • Fastest goal: Danny Benstock 11 seconds vs Great Wakering Rovers, Essex Senior League, 28 August 1995
  • Most goals in one season: Vinny John 45 (3 pens), 1997/98
  • Most consecutive appearances: Roy Drake 66, 22 August 1992 – 29 January 1994
  • Youngest player: Perry Burns (15 yrs 266 days, 29 April 06)
  • Oldest player: Mark Lord (48 yrs 90 days, 3 March 15)
  • Youngest goalscorer: Reagan Panzu (17 yrs 67 days, 22 February 03)


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Romford at the Football Club History Database
  2. Romford Town at the Football Club History Database
  3. 3.0 3.1 History Romford FC
  4. Collier Row & Romford at the Football Club History Database
  5. Blakeman, M (2010) The Official History of the Eastern Counties Football League 1935–2010, Volume II ISBN 978-1-908037-02-2
  6. Romford Reserves at the Football Club History Database
  7. Council gives go ahead to new home for Romford Football Club Havering Borough Council

External links

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