Everton crowned National Football Therapy Cup Champions in Cup Final thriller

The Lewes FC 2016 National Football Therapy Cup was won by Everton In The Community (above) at the Dripping Pan last night, edging out last season’s winners Croydon Eagles in a tense penalty shoot out.


Croydon Eagles

The Toffees, who were last season’s runners up against Croydon, went one better this term and won 3-2 in the penalty shoot-out having played out an excellent and exciting 1-1 draw with the Eagles.

In the Plate Final, Langford Tigers edged out Wrexham A again on penalties, to win it for the first time.


Plate winners Langford Tigers beat Wrexham ‘A’ in a brilliant, very close final

18 teams from around the country took part in this year’s tournament — a record number — including 10 teams from the Premier and Football Leagues, as well as teams from local mental health organisations & charities.

The Football Therapy programme, and The National Football Therapy Cup originated at Lewes Football Club and was instigated by fan and former Director Sean Macleod. It is an invitation to all mental well-being teams from across the country to take part, make friends and enjoy a full day of 5-a-side football in a fun, friendly and safe environment. Every team gets to play at least 6 matches, each team member is provided with a packed lunch, and all players who take part receive a medal for their efforts.


A record amount of teams took part including teams from Arsenal, Blackburn and QPR

The tournament is supported by the Sussex FA, Kick It Out and the Football Supporters Federation, East Sussex County Council and The Recovery Kitchen, part of the Lewes Your Way programme and in partnership with mental wellbeing charity Together.

Jonathan Garside, Mental Health Football Coordinator at Everton Football Club said;

“The National Football Therapy Cup 2016 was a huge success, where the beautiful game was played with such passion and respect by all. The tournament only reinforced the unique power that football has to unite everyone regardless of experience or background. The impact this win has had on our players is truly tangible and goes a long way in supporting Everton in the Communities commitment to help improve the health and wellbeing of our participants. Football Therapy is alive and kicking, thanks again to all involved. “

Chief Executive of Lewes Football Club Kevin Miller said, 

“On behalf of Lewes Football Club I’d like to thank the teams who took part, congratulate the Everton lads who went one better than last year, and all partners, staff and volunteers who helped make it happen.” 


He added, “As a fan-owned community club we strive to be totally inclusive; some of the teams travelled a long way to be in this tournament, and to see so many smiling faces, so many players enjoy themselves regardless of ability and yet all of them be inspired through football, drives us on to make next years tournament even better. ”


Lewes Football Club Football Therapy sessions run across the Lewes District throughout the year. It’s free, and you can just turn up and play. For more information on your nearest session, or to register your interest in The 2017 Lewes FC National Football Therapy Cup, contact Adam Wolecki on 01273 470820, or e-mail

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Stars come out for Captain Fantastic

Last night Lewes FC hosted Kelly Newton’s Testimonial, Lewes Ladies FC v an All Star XI
Legendary manager Jacquie Agnew and former coach Dave Cole returned to the dugouts as the stars came out to honour long-serving Lewes captain Kelly Newton.

Former players like Clare Trafford, Charlotte Bennett, Tammy Waine, Michelle Beazley and Katie Baker returned to grace the Dripping Pan. A surprisingly competitive contest saw a hat-trick from MvP Kirstie Spice, goals from Ellie Lock and Ellie Millington and a terrific top-corner penalty from the woman of the hour. Newton played the full game, 45 minutes for each team.

The match was sponsored by Spectrum Eyecare. Over £500 was raised on the night for Kelly’s chosen charity, Cystic Fibrosis
Attendance: 150


Kelly Pic
What a night, what a player.
Captain fantastic Kelly Newton, applauded onto the pitch by team-mates past and present. The testimonial match ended 3-3, with Kelly playing 45 minutes for each side and scoring a (very well taken) penalty.

Over £500 was raised on the night for Kelly’s chosen charity, Cystic Fibrosis.

Photo: James Boyes


A link to the our very special program.

Kelly Newton Legend 6 Program


A little more: Kelly in quotes

Kelly in Quotes.

A little more Kelly in Quotes …


‘Kelly can score from anywhere, as long as it’s between 2 and 12 inches from the goal line.

If you get injured, don’t expect any sympathy from Kelly. She’s only interested in getting on with the game.’

Clare Trafford


Funnily enough Kelly Newton rarely wins MvP. This is, in my opinion, because her level never drops, so it never looks like she’s having a particularly impressive game. She does the little things so well you barely notice, but on the are occasion she’s not there – I can’t remember the last one! – you notice.


She is one of the finest players I’ve seen in the Red and Black of Lewes, male or female, and the most consistent player I’ve seen in this league.’



‘Norwich Away 2011/12. I was playing at left back so had the perfect view of Kelly’s ‘overhead kick’. I’ve never seen anyone of that age get their leg so high! The fact that I was on the floor at the time and the pitch was on a hill suggests that she didn’t raise her leg as high as first thought….’


‘I had the pleasure of sitting next to Kelly in the changing room for 4/5 years. I couldn’t think of a better person to look up to and learn from. She has had a massive influence on my football and to this day although no longer playing alongside her, her philosophies are embedded in me. I truly miss playing and training with her week in week out.’

Steph Carter


‘For three and a half seasons it was a pleasure to work with and alongside Kels, for me the epitome of a true leader on and off the pitch, my fondest memory was a game against Charlton at home we were 1-0 down and we weren`t really clicking, a Charlton player was injured and Kelly called all the girls in and in true Phil Brown style gave a speech that transformed the players to go on and win 2-1, that is Kelly all over.


Another time Kelly wasn`t well and I brought her on for the last 15 mins – well, 12, really. I know she still hasn`t forgiven me for that. She wants to play, no matter what. When they say all players are replaceable, I believe Kelly is one exception to this rule. If they do find another, the club will have an incredible player for the future.

Dave Cole


The most exciting – and potentially dangerous – thing we share is having a hot cup of Horlicks the evening of a particularly tough game. You cannot underestimate the sheer thrill of dunking your biscuit until it reaches maximum softness, but extracting and eating it before it breaks off and lands in your lap….or worse: your mug.


I’d like to express what Kelly means to me as a player, captain and friend. I have played for numerous teams in my football career and I feel fortunate to not only have been invited to play for Lewes, but to have been welcomed so nicely and captained so effectively by the woman to whom this evening is dedicated. To play under someone so passionate gives one a real appreciation for what football is all about.


Kelly “bleeds red and black”. She embodies what Lewes FC is all about. The football, the fans, the community, the players, the staff and ultimately passion for the game as a whole. It is an absolute privilege to have been captained by her. I would love to have the chance to be captained by and play on the same team as her again in the future.

Michelle Beazley

Sign up for the U18s trials

Lewes Football Club’s Ryman U18s side will be holding their first trials for the 2016/17 season on Thursday 5th May between 7pm and 9pm at the superb Lewes FC Rookery 3G training facility directly behind the Dripping Pan.

Alex Walsh, the club’s U18s manager, is seeking talented, committed and enthusiastic players who have aspirations to play a high level of football.

Lewes Football Club has a background of youth success over many years we are proud of the genuine pathway through the youth system into the first team. In recent years numerous players, including Ronnie Conlon, Jordan Badger, Charlie Coppola and Stacey Freeman, have progress through the U18s, Academy and Development Squad at the Dripping Pan into the first team, while previously others have progressed into the professional game such as David Wheeler, Solly March and Grant Hall.

To register for the trial please email Youth Secretary Kevin Brook at your full name, address, telephone number (mobile preferred), date of birth, previous clubs and preferred playing position(s) by Wednesday 4th May.

So that was the season…a review in numbers

1. In games where Lewes have scored first, we have taken 25 points this season. Unfortunately, where we have conceded first we have only managed 5 points. In the games where we have scored first there has been a 35% chance that we would go onto win. Where the opposition scored first, there has been a 76% chance we would go onto lose.

2. If we finished our games at the end of the 75th minute, we would have gained 12 more points than we finished the league on.

3. On 10 occasions this season, we have conceded two goals within a five-minute spell. If we could have prevented that second goal in those 10 occasions we would have been 13 points better off.

4. We’ve racked up 49 yellow cards in all competitions this season, with Lloyd Cotton the most cautioned player on 8 yellow cards (for Lewes). We’ve had five red cards this season, two of which (Will Godmon’s v Farnborough and Lloyd Cotton’s v VCD Athletic) were later rescinded. Last season we managed 101 yellow cards and a whopping 13 reds.

5. Champions Hampton & Richmond Borough’s heaviest defeat this season came at home to us back in September. That game also reflected the only time this season where we have scored four goals in a league game. Where we’ve scored three or more in the Ryman League Premier Division this season, we went onto win on 75% of occasions.

6. Jonté Smith finished the season as the leading goal scorer, with 10 goals but his striking partner Alex Laing has actually provided more assists than anyone else with 11 in all competitions.

7. We are at our deadliest in the last quarter of games, scoring 17 goals from the 67th minute onwards. Conversely, we are more likely to concede in that quarter too, with 32 goals scored against us in that period, 13 of which have been in the last five minutes of league games.

8. Our midweek record has been significantly better than our Saturday record, taking 13 points from 15 midweek games (average points per game of 0.86pts) as opposed to 21 points from 31 games played on a Saturday (0.68pts per game).

9. Our average midweek home attendance this season has been 413, which includes a season-best crowd of 568 on Bank Holiday Monday against Bognor Regis Town. Excluding that game it was 408. Our average home Saturday attendance has been 426, whilst on the three occasions where we have clashed with Brighton & Hove Albion that number has dropped to an average of 403.

10. We used 54 players this season in the First Team squad, with Leon Redwood having made the most appearances (48), followed by Henry Muggeridge (47). We have taken 25 points this season where the back five of Winterton-Brinkhurst-Redwood-Freeman-Malins have started (20 games in total).

Stats compiled by Stuart Fuller

Rooks end the season with a point on the Rocks

An impressive performance saw Lewes finish the season with a well-deserved draw against third-placed East Thurrock, as the Rooks ended the campaign without a home defeat since December reports Tom Harper.

Darren Freeman made two changes to the side that narrowly lost at Dulwich Hamlet last weekend, with Alex Malins and Lee Carey replacing Jordan Badger and Alex Laing in the starting line-up.

The visitors made a bright start, knowing that a win could see them finish second depending on results elsewhere, with Ben Marlow shooting just wide from the edge of the area after a purposeful run through midfield.  They took the lead after just nine minutes, as top scorer and captain Sam Higgins found himself with time and space 25 yards from goal, and sent a superb effort past Chris Winterton and into the top corner.

East Thurrock continued to press and should have doubled their lead minutes later when Tom Wraight sent a free header wide from a dangerous Ryan Sammons cross. The Rooks gradually began to see more of the ball as the half progressed though, and equalised after 23 minutes.

Henry Muggeridge was the scorer, latching onto a mis-hit strike from James Hammond and cutting inside from the left before sending an excellent curling effort past Lucas Lidakevicius and into the far corner.

This goal galvanised Lewes, who played arguably their best football of the game for the remainder of the half.   Ronnie Conlon sent a curling effort wide from the edge of the area, before Jonte Smith hit the side-netting from a tight angle after latching onto a through-ball from Muggeridge at the end of an incisive counter-attack as the Rooks came close to taking the lead before half-time.

Lewes started the second half on the front foot, with Hammond seeing a close-range effort well saved by Lidakevicius after some good football down the right wing.  East Thurrock continued to pose an occasional threat themselves though, as both Higgins and substitute Daryl Robson saw strikes kept out by the legs of Winterton.

The Rooks finished the game strongly and thought they had taken the lead in the final ten minutes, as Smith latched onto a through-ball from Laing and finished past Lidakevicius. Unfortunately for the majority of the crowd, the linesman had raised his flag to signal offside as soon as the ball had been played, although the reaction of Smith suggested it was a close call.

Lewes continued to push for a winner late on, and saw Lidakevicius react well to keep out a close-range effort from Lloyd Cotton after a dangerous Laing cross.  However, the Rooks were forced to settle for a draw, which was arguably a fair result based on chances created by both sides over the course of the game.

Lewes head into the summer after an encouraging second half of the campaign, with plenty of reasons for optimism ahead of next season in Ryman South after some impressive performances and results since the turn of the year.

Lewes: Winterton, Brinkhurst, Redwood, Hammond, Freeman, Malins, Muggeridge (Coppola 81), Cotton, Smith, Conlon (Laing 59) (Okojie 90), Carey.
Unused Subs: Badger, Greenfield.
Booked: None.

East Thurrock United: Lidakevicius, Sammons, Knott, Ellul, Hayes, Wood (Morgan 66), Scott, Marlow, Higgins (Robson 66), Ruel, Wraight (Hogan 66).
Unused Subs: Peddie, Craddock.
Booked: None.

Referee: Stuart Butler

Attendance: 505

The Rookettes FS Squad V Burgess Hill Town SCWGFL Cup Final.

Womens SCWGFL 2016 Cup Final PosterIMG_6962

The Rookettes FS Squad face their final challenge of the season for more silverware on Thursday.

The Women’s League Challenge Cup Final.

Thursday 28th April. Kick off at Culver Road will be 7.15pm.


In just their second season of senior football, the Lewes Ladies Foundation Squad have been crowned Champions of the Sussex County Women’s & Girl’s Football League.

The young squad, managed by Martin Perkins with Coach Greg Cross, consisting of players who were all eligible to play at under -18s level this season, built on last years impressive form where they won the league Cup.

They topped the league for the first time back in October and haven’t looked back since.

We hope to join this talented squad as a wave of Red & Black on the terraces at Lancing FC to see them win the double for the first time in The Women’s League Challenge Cup final.

Head Of Ladies Football Jacquie Agnew was also pleased to see four players from last year’s squad moving up the pathway and into the Development squad whilst 5 other players made appearances during this season.


Burgess Hill Town Reserves will be their opponents on the night. Having had a bye in the first round The Hillians Reserve team beat Horsham Sparrows 2-1 in a close fought semi final played at Horsham on April 17th. Their goals came from Natalie Bagwell and Isabella May.

Please come and join us to hopefully watch The Rookettes take a double Crown..

East Thurrock United Preview and Darren’s thoughts

So here we are.  The final game of our Ryman League Premier Division life, for at least a year.  I can’t say it’s been an especially lucky league for us but likewise I’d much rather be heading up than down! I’m sure we all want to put this season behind us and move onto 2016/17….but let’s not quit just yet.

Let’s just remind ourselves that last Saturday we lost for the first time in 8 games against a team in the Play-offs.  Our unbeaten home record stretches back to a time when we still had Ronnie Corbett, Victoria Wood and David Bowie in our lives, and its one of the best in the division.  We are ninety minutes away from being almost immortal at home in 2016 having won three and drawn six of our nine league games.

Standing in our way are Play-off qualifiers East Thurrock United, a team that many would have put down at the start of the season as relegation candidates.  How they have proved everyone wrong week after week.  The form of both Hampton & Richmond Borough and Bognor Regis Town has been astonishing and in any normal season East Thurrock could have claimed the title themselves but instead will have to gamble (literally before anyone from the FA is reading) on the Play-off lottery.  Of course we wish them all the luck next week.

Our record against The Rocks has been a bit of a mixed bag.  Up until our last meeting in December our record had been OK against them, but on that cold day in December we were beaten 4-1, the turning point of the game the terrible decision by the referee to send off James Hammond for nothing more than a 50/50 challenge for the ball.  It was an eventful afternoon with both Alex Laing and Alex Malins spending their Saturday night in Basildon A & E with Barry Collins for company, along with an East Thurrock United.  I’m sure that evening won’t factor highly on any of that quartets “Best Saturday Night’s Ever” DVD.  So in the past four seasons the record looks like:-

P 9  W 3  D 4  L 2  GF 12 GA 12

East Thurrock’s recent form has been good with seven wins from their last ten games although it is understandable that they rest a few key players tomorrow with an eye on the Play-offs next week where they will have home advantage against either Tonbridge Angels, Dulwich Hamlet or the outsiders, Enfield Town. San Higgins has scored 42 goals in all competitions for them this season and will be a huge threat up front along with 22 goal partner Tom Wraight.

Darren has a strong squad to choose from with Alex Malins likely to be available after his head injury against Staines Town two weeks ago the only real concern.  Don’t forget that you can vote for YOUR Player of the Season before the game tomorrow, to be presented at a short award ceremony post match which will include Darren’s Player of the Season:-

“Obviously, this season hasn’t panned out as any of us would have liked. Yet, since taking over, I feel – and hopefully you do too – that things are improving. From first game I took over at Grays Athletic, to how we’re playing now, I can’t believe the difference in the attitude of the players and the way we’ve played.

Another sign of our progress is how players are progressing through the ranks and being noticed by bigger clubs. It was great to see Charlie Coppola score last week, his first senior goal for the club coming just after a trial with Leicester City. We’ve had Yasin trialling with Chelsea, Stacey’s been down at Crawley and is going back in there next week, Alife Rogers has been to Premier League clubs, and then there was Junior, who left us to sign for a professional side in Turkey. It shows how far we’ve come and how we’re producing players, and we have to continue doing it.

Even though we were mathematically down after the Kingstonian game, the boys haven’t missed a training session. They’ve continued to go out there and give their all. That’s credit to the lads. It shows how much it means to them to put the Lewes shirt on. Now we need to continue with that attitude and take it into next season. If we can keep the nucleus of the squad together and bring in four or five players, with a good pre-season behind us, it’s exciting times ahead for Lewes FC.

We’ve already started planning for next season and spoken to several players. We’ve arranged a number of pre-season friendlies and got our training plans sorted. Preparation is key. We won’t leave anything to chance.”