Chipping FC looks to the future as it marks 140th anniversary

Posted on - 15th May, 2024 - 7:00pm | Author - | Posted in - Longridge, Preston News, Ribble Valley News
Chipping Reserves won the West Lancs League reserve division two title this year.

A village football club which runs 18 teams and has more than 200 players is celebrating its 140th anniversary this year.

The remarkable milestone has been achieved by Chipping Football Club and, to mark the anniversary year, it hosted a special junior tournament last weekend (May 12), one which organisers hope will become an annual event.

Mark Ross, vice chairman of Chipping FC, said the past decade had been one of significant growth for the club, especially after the pitches were redeveloped in 2013 and enabled the ambitions of the club to grow.

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He said: “The football club contributes hugely to the village as a whole. For example, we do not have our own clubhouse so after the senior matches we go back to the Tilly’s pub and put money back into businesses like that.

“It is the same when there are junior matches taking place, the village shop and farm shop have parents queuing outside of them.”

Chipping women’s team were crowned league champions this season.

Chipping FC now has 13 junior teams and five senior teams, with significant success having been achieved on the pitch in recent seasons.

This season the reserve team was crowned champions of the West Lancashire League reserve division two, while the women’s team won the Lancashire FA Women’s County League division one. In the 2022-23 season, the men’s first team won the West Lancashire League division two title.

And with success at a senior level, Mr Ross said the club was doing all it could to create a clear pathway of progression for its junior players, including the creation of an ‘A’ team next season which would create a stepping stone for the under-18s between their level and the senior squads.

With the club logo also tweaked to incorporate the 140th anniversary and a gradual move towards both senior and junior teams wearing green (they previously wore green and red respectively), the club was aiming to bring the whole setup ‘under one umbrella’.

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As for the recent youth tournament, Mr Ross said he hoped it would be the first of many.

He added: “We started it to mark the anniversary but we hope that if it proves to be a success then we could look to grow it in future, maybe even holding it over two days.

“With 24 teams and support from local businesses like The Striped Pig Company and Uncle Bob’s Ice Cream, it is all about trying to maximise the facilities we have got and provide opportunities for junior footballers to develop.”

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