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Non League Football Under The Microscope

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BuiltWithNOF

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

Welton Rovers FC

West Clewes
North Road
Midsomer Norton
Somerset

Telephone: 01761 412097

Website

Nickname: Rovers

Stand & clubhouse

Terracing

Near goal & car park

Top goal

The ground at West Clewes is probably the oldest within what was once a thriving coal mining area, and today boasts a number of senior Non League clubs in close proximity to one another. Welton Rovers FC purchased the ground soon after its formation in 1887, six years after near neighbours Paulton Rovers.

The Club was one of the earliest members of the Western League, joining Division Two in 1903/04. However, severe financial difficulties forced them to withdraw from the League in 1923 and relinquish the ground to the local Miners’ Welfare. The Welfare maintained West Clewes and Rovers were admitted back to the League for the 1924/25 season.

Immediately inside the entrance to the ground is a decent sized car park, with a thriving clubhouse immediately to the left. This was originally a wooden building, and has since been rebuilt. Interestingly, the original building was not demolished initially, but had the new brick shell built around it first.

Immediately adjacent to the clubhouse, is the predominantly wooden stand which extends to approximately the half-way line. This is set back some way from the perimeter fence and its stepped roof (painted in club colours) is evidence that the structure has been extended since it was originally constructed in the late 1930s, just before WW2. This doubled its capacity from 150 to 300 with the seating provided by wooden benches.

The mid 1960s saw the Club complete a hat-trick of Western League titles, and coincided with the terracing of grass banking at the far end of the near touchline. The terracing curves around to a sloping grassed area behind the top goal, and Kerry Miller states that this was almost certainly terraced as well at some point.

Today a small childrens’ playground provides a slightly different ambience to what one might expect at a football ground, but the bank does provide an excellent vantage point, and there is even a solitary park bench should one wish to sit down.

The coal industry began to decline in the late 1960s and the Miners’ Welfare donated the ground to the local Council for its continued use by the football club. As a consequence, Rovers now lease what was once their ground from the local authorities.

Ground details
Capacity: 2,400
Seats: 300
Floodlights: Yes

Directions
The ground is on the main A362 in Midsomer Norton.

 

Two views from behind top goal