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Bungay FC past and present join 90-year celebrations

08:13 09 September 2015

The 1928-29 Bungay FC team. The club was established in 1925  from an amalgamation of Bungay United and Bungay Harriers.

The 1928-29 Bungay FC team. The club was established in 1925 from an amalgamation of Bungay United and Bungay Harriers.

Archant

A football club famed for coming up with innovate ways to attract new supporters is celebrating its 90th anniversary with a special event to bring together players from the past nine decades.

Bungay Town FC 1988 teamBungay Town FC 1988 team

Bungay Town FC, knows as the Black Dogs, was formed in July 1925 from an amalgamation of Bungay United and Bungay Harriers.

The club’s first match was a friendly away game against Poringland on September 12, 1925, which they lost 3-0.

And now, in a repeat of the club’s first ever game, Bungay will celebrate its 90th year with an Anglian Combination league game against Poringland Wanderers at the club’s home ground at Maltings Meadow, Ditchingham, on Saturday, September 26, kicking off at 2.30pm.

Shaun Cole, chairman of Bungay FC, said: “We are trying to find at least 90 former first team players, and hopefully one born in 1925, and invite them to be our guests on the day.

Bungay FC's 2014-15 team which won the division and league cups, earning them promotion to Division One of the Anglian Combination league.Bungay FC's 2014-15 team which won the division and league cups, earning them promotion to Division One of the Anglian Combination league.

“We have around 200 young players and we are hoping that 90 of them will also be able to attend on the day.”

Plans for the historic day include a group photo of players past a present which will be taken in front of the stand followed by celebrations after the match.

Mr Cole said that, in keeping with the anniversary theme, there will be a raffle with three prizes of £90 and a free Bungay Banger hot dog for the first 90 people through the door.

The team are hoping to capitalise on the success of last season which saw them win the division two championship and promotion to division one as well as the league cup.

Free mushrooms and entry for five piece - just some of the ways club has tried to bring in new fans

The Suffolk club has regularly hit the headlines over the years for its innovative ways of attracting new fans to matches.

Last year, the club offered free punnets of mushrooms to supporters who attended its home match against Martham.

The offer coincided with Non-League Day, when clubs try to boost fan numbers, and since the former chairman is a mushroom grower, the club saw it as a great opportunity to encourage people to attend the game.

The season before, the club gave fans 5p to attend its game on Non-League Day.

Non-League Day day was set up in 2010 as a way of highlighting the importance of affordable volunteer-led community football.

The event has become an annual part of the football calendar during an international break and is backed by both Premier League and Football League clubs.

The club also grabbed the headlines in 2012 with its Bungay v Bungay charity football match where all 22 players, referee, linesmen and reserves shared the same surname, Bungay, which attracted players from Australia and America in what was believed to be one of the only games ever held using all players and officials of the same name.

The club provides opportunities for people aged 4 to 50 to play football from the base at Maltings Meadow.

In recent years, the club has come up with unique ways of encouraging new supporters to the ground, including free mushrooms as part of the national Non-League Day initiative.

Tickets for Bungay’s anniversary game are available now from club members or the Maltings Pavilion.

If any former players would like to join the 90-year line up on September 26, contact Mr Cole on 07769169542 or email sa_cole@hotmail.com

Are you part of a club celebrating a special anniversary? Email lynn.crombie@archant.co.uk or 01502 712060 to speak to a reporter.

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