With the expansion of our League (and the alterations which the FA have made to the pyramid) we have a number of clubs who are entirely new to us, haven’t been part of our setup for rather a long time, or are returning to us after some time away. We decided that the best way to introduce- or to reintroduce- them to Bostik League supporters was through the eyes of one of their own.
Here's Ryan Aldridge to introduce us to the wonders of Sevenoaks Town.
How long have you been a supporter of Sevenoaks Town?
Sevenoaks Town FC
I'm a relative newcomer; only two years.
Tell us how you became a fan? What attracted you to the club initially?
I'm friends with a former players brother and parents, and it all started for me when I went to watch him play.
And what is it about the club that has kept you there since?
I had heard a lot of good things about how the club was run and the people involved. Straight away they were all very friendly- and the players, manager and coach show appreciation for the support at every game. Its a nice chilled out atmosphere, and most importantly it's quality football played by ‘real’ people you can relate to.
We have had many conversations with Mick, Wilfs, Julian and the boys and have even been invited for a meal with the whole first team as a thank you. We stand in between the dug outs so get a close up view of the action. For me its the best place to be to soak up the feelings and atmosphere from the game. Its a real family club and I firmly believe that we are going places.
Is there a moment in the history of your club that supporters always talk about? What would it be- and why is it important to you all?
In the last 2 years there are a few that spring to mind.
The FA cup win to Lewes, when the home grown Jack Miles scored a towering header to win the replay at home. The gutting moment when Barry Hayles scored a late late equaliser in the next round vs Chesham that took the replay away- and which we ultimately lost.
For me, though, it's the league win this year- what an achievement for all the club.
We have some great players; and they've provided a lot of great moments and memories. Im glad I got to soak up around 75% of the games! I even went when my wife was in labour. Had to be done! I did make the birth though so its all good!
Last season was also important as it showed the intent and direction we are going in. We have a great chairman who supports what the manager wants to do. I don’t expect us to go up and stagnate, I believe everyone wants to use this as a stepping stone for greater things. Watch this space.
For the benefit of those who haven’t visited before, describe your ground.
It's set in the corner of the picturesque Greatness Park, no hustle and bustle around it, just the occasional dog walker. The club house is separate to the ground for alcohol, but there is a hut for everything else behind the Eddie Diplock Stand.
We have a quality artificial pitch. The ground is well presented and maintained, and there's plenty of potential to expand when needed.
If an away fan was travelling to your ground for the first time, how would you recommend they got there? Tell us about parking and public transport.
There is parking near the club house that can get busy, but there are also plenty of other places to park for free and occasionally for a big game you park near the ground in the actual park area. The nearest station is NOT Sevenoaks- it's Bat & Ball, served by Thameslink (on the odd occasion when Thameslink actually bother to run any trains).
Are there any local sights or amenities you’d recommend they visit? Tourist attractions, pubs etc?
Otford is a beautiful little village not far away with nice pubs and restaurants. Also the Raj Bari in Sevenoaks is a lovely curry house- but the club is around two miles from the town centre.
Finally, pie, burger or pint? What would you recommend, and why?
I wait to see whether the food will change this season, but the burgers were good, as were the sausage rolls! Better get in quick as they were in demand last season!