Lowestoft get Ryman League place
Michael Bailey Lowestoft Town have secured a place in the Ryman League from next season - due reward for the most successful season in the club's history.The Trawlerboys were desperate to move up a rung of the non-league football ladder after dominating the Ridgeons League Premier Division last season, scoring 114 goals and 100 points on their way to the title.
Lowestoft Town have secured a place in the Ryman League from next season - due reward for the most successful season in the club's history.
The Trawlerboys were desperate to move up a rung of the non-league football ladder after dominating the Ridgeons League Premier Division last season, scoring 114 goals and 100 points on their way to the title.
Add to that lifting the Suffolk Premier Cup at Portman Road last month, and an FA Vase final and semi-final appearance in the last two seasons, and Lowestoft were hoping their superiority on the pitch would translate to playing at level eight of the English football pyramid - the highest point the club has reached in its 125-year existence.
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The news will be a blow for the Ridgeons League, with Lowestoft's average league attendance of 562 higher than any other club at its level across the entire country.
But the Blues are proving to be a club very much on the up, with last summer's introduction of former Norwich City duo Craig Fleming and Dave Carolan to help joint managers Micky Chapman and Ady Gallagher behind the scenes, the catalyst for a season that has climaxed with promotion to the league Lowestoft have been preparing for.
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Thos preparations included work on Crown Meadow last summer to ensure the ground was up to scratch, as well as a visit to the FA's headquarters in London, to make their case for promotion should the club clinch the Ridgeons title.
Waveney MP and club patron, Bob Blizzard, said: “All the lobbying and the hard work has paid off and the FA have seen sense through the strength of our case.
“Winning the league by 17 clear points and an average attendance of 562 helped our cause - the highest attendance at that level in the country.
“Lowestoft Town are a football club on the up. Next season will be a new adventure and a new challenge.
“It is very exciting and we look forward to next year. Our aim now is to win the Ryman League North.”
The Blues will start next season in Ryman League Division One North, competing against 22 teams, including Maldon Town, Enfield Town and Concord Rangers.
Ryman Premier includes a few bigger names in non-league football, including Sutton United, Canvey Island and Dartford, while the promotion also signals the end of Lowestoft's FA Vase love affair. The Trawlerboys will compete in the FA Trophy next season.