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Non League Football Under The Microscope

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Eastbourne Borough fans celebrate - August Bank Holiday Monday 2003                                Photograph by Sam Hicks

Tavistock AFC

Langsford Park
Crowndale Road
PL19 0DD

Telephone: 01822 614447


Nickname: The Lambs, Tavy

Stand & interior

View of near goal & clubhouse end

Nice view of the stand & backdrop

One of the oldest clubs in the South West of the country, Tavistock were formed in 1888, the same year as the Devon County FA.

The story related on the official club website is that it took a letter in the Tavistock Gazette from scribes under the pseudonym of Wellwisher and Halfback, to attract the attention of local businessmen. Local sportsman and businessman Herbert Spencer summoned interested persons to assemble at the Guildhall on 8 September, where a committee was elected under the chairmanship of his brother Wilfred. Another brother Kingsley served on the committee and the first secretary was Tom Owen of Chapel Street. The club adopted a colour strip of blue and old gold, although today the club colours are red and black.

The newly formed club played on the old Tavistock Grammar School playing fields, before moving to a pitch in Green Lane owned by the landlord of the Bedford Hotel in 1892. Tavy moved back and forth before settling on a pitch in Sandy Lane. There was a small timber stand, and they remained at their new home until the outbreak of WW2 in 1939.

For three years after the War, the club played on a pitch with a small changing hut back along Green Lane until the club President Herbert Langsford purchased a piece of land in Crowndale Road and gave it to the club under trust in 1949. Fittingly, the ground is now named in his memory.

Today, Langsford Park remains relatively undeveloped, with the advantage of being situated in a particularly attractive spot overlooking a river and surrounded by the picturesque Devon countryside. There is the requisite west country grass bank along the near touchline which provides a slightly elevated vantage point.

Opposite is the lovely old stand, opened at the same time as the ground. Its original curving roof was a victim of high winds on several occasions before finally being replaced in the early 1990s after a going a season without one. Redundant railway sleepers were used for the floor, and seating is provided by aging wooden benches: the official capacity being 200.

There is a large car park inside the entrance behind the near goal, where there is also a social club and changing room block, dating from 1977 and 1974 respectively. The most recent addition to the ground was floodlights, inaugurated in 1994.

Ground details
Capacity: 2,000
Seats: 200
Floodlights: Yes

From the town follow the A386 Plymouth Road. Proceed across the roundabout and Crowndale Road is the first turning on the right. The ground is about half a mile on the left, opposite Tavistock College.

By rail