SSMFL; Ampthill Town FC join Sports Shots

Sports Shots are delighted to announce that Ampthill Town FC are to join our list of clubs that we cover with immediate effect. The Spartan South Midlands Division One club have this summer recruited Paul Toms as their new manager for the season ahead, and the new man brought with him John Phillips as first team coach and one of their first calls was to Sports Shots to see if we’d add them to our portfolio of non-league clubs. After a brief conversation with both men and club chairman Gary Maidment it was agreed, and we welcome Ampthill Town on board, and wish them every success for the season ahead.

There have been several big changes at Ampthill Town over the past few years, the most notable being the new clubhouse that proudly stands behind the park end goal. To read the full story on the new and improved facilities from last year click here: https://www.premierleague.com/news/482995

The club were formed back in 1881 but it wasn’t until the early 1950’s that they joined the South Midlands League where they  were relatively successful culminating in winning the league title in the 1959/60 season and finishing runners-up the following year. Just four years later the club finished bottom of the South Midlands Premier and moved over to the United Counties League where they remained for twenty-six seasons in various divisions before returning to the South Midlands in time for the 1991/92 season, where they have remained ever since.

New club facilities

In the eighteen seasons since the turn of the century, Ampthill have spent all bar four in the second tier (division one in today’s money), their most recent success being in 2011/12 where they finished runners-up to London Colney and were promoted to the premier division. Their first season saw them finish fifth, and the following year they claimed the runners-up spot to Hanwell Town, but the success was to be short lived as the following year a bottom two place finish saw ‘The Amps’ relegated back to division one, where they have finished in fourteenth position for each of the last three seasons.

FA Cup runs have eluded the club, not since 1986 have they progressed to the first qualifying round, but they have seen more recent success in the FA Vase. Having reached the third round previously in 1976/77, 1981/82, 1983/84 & 2007/08, they finally went one further in 2011/12 before going out in the fourth round and that run granted them entry into the competition much later the following year. Entering at the second-round stage, Town got as far as the fifth round before Hadleigh beat them by the odd goal in three at Ampthill Park. The following season saw the furthest the club have reached when a run to the quarter-finals eventually saw them knocked out at Eastbourne United.

After the opening of the new clubhouse last season, the club have again been busy this summer with the completion of a new barrier that runs around the perimeter of the playing area meaning the pitch is now fully enclosed. Images for the new barrier can be viewed here: https://twitter.com/GazAtfc/status/1002857667101188096

For anyone unfamiliar with the Spartan South Midlands League, Ampthill will this season be facing thirty-eight league games home & away, two separate South Midlands cup competitions, the FA Vase, and two separate Bedfordshire cup competitions. To keep up to date with Town’s progress and fixture list, use this link: http://fulltime-league.thefa.com/DisplayTeam.do;jsessionid=FC0D7153A16310DF92A9184A040B9F2D?divisionseason=288088660&teamID=352163946

Anyone looking for their football fix in Ampthill can take out an ATFC clubhouse membership, and for just £4.99 per month you receive free admission to every home game, a fully licenced bar at clubhouse prices, live TV sports nights, and the bar also has BT Sports. The perfect opportunity for the people of Ampthill to get behind their football club.

The club are looking for helpers to get involved behind the scenes if anyone has some spare time to volunteer. General committee members are required for match day duties, as well as a secretary & an assistant child welfare officer for the youth section. For any businesses looking to advertise, there are some very competitive packages available, and the clubhouse is always available for hire for parties or meetings. Anyone interested in any of the positions or hiring the club should contact Gary on 07450 018848.

Sports Shots went to meet new 1st team manager Paul Toms and spoke about his thoughts on joining the club, and his vision for the future. The whole interview can be viewed here:

Anyone tuning into Sports Shots for the first time, to follow any news on your club scroll down our page to the index of categories and click on your team as shown below (click on image):

Sports Shots would like to thank everyone for their time at Ampthill Town FC, and we look forward to working with them this forthcoming season!

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