Bromley F.C.

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Bromley fc.png
Full nameBromley Football Club
Nickname(s)The Ravens, The Lillywhites
Founded1892; 122 years ago (1892)
GroundFortress Stadium, Hayes Lane, Bromley
Ground Capacity6,000 (3,000 seated)
ManagerMark Goldberg
LeagueConference South
2013–14Conference South, 3rd
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Bromley fc.png
Full nameBromley Football Club
Nickname(s)The Ravens, The Lillywhites
Founded1892; 122 years ago (1892)
GroundFortress Stadium, Hayes Lane, Bromley
Ground Capacity6,000 (3,000 seated)
ManagerMark Goldberg
LeagueConference South
2013–14Conference South, 3rd

Coordinates: 51°23′24.25″N 0°01′15.87″E / 51.3900694°N 0.0210750°E / 51.3900694; 0.0210750 Bromley Football Club are an English football club based in Bromley, in Greater London, England. They currently play in the Conference South, and play their home matches at The Fortress Stadium, Hayes Lane.


Early years[edit]

Bromley Football Club was founded in 1892 and played friendly games against mainly local opposition sides in its first season. Their first competitive football came in the South London League, which was won at the first attempt. However, they moved frequently between leagues in those early days. Two seasons in the Southern Football League were followed by a spell in the London League, winning the Division Two title in 1897.

After a brief interlude in the Kent League, they returned to the London League but were expelled in 1900. They then competed in the Spartan League, and after winning the title in 1908, they had their first spell in the Isthmian League and won the championship in each of their first two seasons. After the First World War they joined the Athenian League, winning the title in 1923.

Though the 1930s were successful on the cup front, league honours eluded them until 1949 when they lifted the Athenian League Championship, to go with the FA Amateur Cup. Three years later they rejoined the Isthmian League, and again made an immediate impact finishing runners up at the first attempt, and going one better in 1954, reversing the previous season's six-point margin over Walthamstow Avenue, who were again runners up when Bromley were champions again in 1961.

The following season they had only two clubs below them, and in thirteen subsequent seasons only twice finished in the top half, culminating in relegation in 1975, the second time they had finished at the bottom.

They were promoted in 1980, and during an up and down period they went down again in 1984, came back up two years later and were runners up to Yeovil Town in 1988 – the highest league position for over 25 years – before being relegated for a third time two years later. Regaining Premier Division status at the first attempt, they remained in the top flight until 1999 when, after their best start to a season for many a year – thirteen points out of the first five games – they only won four of the remaining 37 league games, and as a consequence were relegated for the fourth time since promotion and relegation was introduced.

Recent years[edit]

Their latest spell in the lower division saw them finish in ninth, eighteenth, nineteenth, sixth and eighth positions in the league table up until 2004. The formation of the Conference South in 2004, and the resulting re-organisation of the non-league pyramid, meant that whilst staying the same division, the club had effectively slipped down a division, to the eighth tier of English football, the lowest level in its history. Between 1999 and 2001 two managers resigned before Stuart McIntyre took over the reins for the first time towards the end of October 2001. Despite starting the season strongly, McIntyre decided to step down in October 2003. He returned in early 2004 to steady the ship, after being asked back by chairman Jerry Dolke, but a good finish to the campaign failed to prevent Bromley from just missing out on the restructuring play-off spot.

The 2004/05 season began well with memorable FA Cup wins over Fisher Athletic and Sutton United and a strong showing in the league before results tailed off through November and December and McIntyre was relieved of his duties. The club acted quickly to fill the void and asked a familiar face to take over. George Wakeling accepted the offer and just before Christmas 2004 returned to the job which he had left in 1999. His first job was to appoint his former captain and crowd favourite, Frank Coles, as assistant manager.

From the beginning of 2005 the manager's role was shared between Wakeling and former Carshalton Athletic boss, Billy Smith. The new management team provided the impetus required for a climb back up the table and Bromley went on to finish fourth, claiming a place in the end of season play-offs. Metropolitan Police were dispatched on penalties after a tense semi-final to earn a trip to Horsham where Bromley secured their return to the Premier Division with a 3–1 victory.

2005–06 saw Bromley's return the Premier Division, and a safe mid-table position was secured. There was a period in the season where relegation was a brief threat but a strong end of season run secured the club's premier division status by beating Billericay Town 4–3 in a penalty shoot out in the playoff final. Bromley also won the Kent Senior Cup with a memorable win over Gravesend & Northfleet. Trailing 2–1 in the final minutes, Bromley equalised against their full-time professional opponents and then won the game with a Simon Mitchell strike early in extra time.

Towards the end of the 2005–06 campaign, chairman Jerry Dolke made the surprise announcement that the management team who had put Bromley in such a good position would be replaced by Dolke's brother-in-law, former Crystal Palace chairman, Mark Goldberg. A number of changes took place at the beginning of the 2013–14 season, both on and off the pitch. A new first team coach, Hugo Langton, was appointed, as well as a raft of new players being brought in. Off the field, Matt Hall became the stadium announcer, and would also present the club's official podcast with David Cooke.[1]

2006–07 season[edit]

After making a number of high-profile signings over the summer of 2006, Bromley dominated the early stages of the season with wins against Staines Town, Ramsgate, Worthing, East Thurrock United and Harrow Borough, not to mention emphatic victories at Hampton & Richmond Borough (4–0), and against Ashford Town (5–1) and Slough Town (4–0), leaving the Lilies at the top of the table.

On 28 October 2006, Bromley reached the first round proper of the FA Cup for the first time in ten years after beating the full-time professional Conference National side Grays Athletic 2–1 at the Recreation Ground. 1500 Bromley fans then made the trip to League One side and near-neighbours Gillingham. Bromley lost the match 4–1, but the scoreline flattered the hosts, who led by just one goal until the final few minutes, with Nic McDonnell having scored for Bromley in the 70th minute.[2]

The start of 2007 bought a number of less than impressive results for Bromley, but as of March onwards, results picked up. The Easter Weekend saw a 3–1 victory at Ramsgate, followed by a 2–1 win over Carshalton Athletic. Bromley's biggest league win of the season, and for many years, came with an 8–0 victory at bottom side Slough Town, pushing Bromley onto top spot. Bromley's good form continued and the team went into the final game of the season knowing that if they beat Boreham Wood, and Hampton & Richmond failed to beat Slough, they would be champions. Bromley duly won their game 2–0, and with ten minutes left there were jubilant celebrations amongst the fans as news filtered through that Slough had equalised against Hampton. Sadly for Bromley, Hampton then scored two more late goals to win their match and secure the league title.

By finishing as runners up, Bromley secured a place in the end-of-season promotion play-offs. On Tuesday 1 May 2007, Bromley beat AFC Wimbledon 1–0 at Hayes Lane with a header from Nic McDonnell in front of 3,289 fans. On Saturday 5 May 2007 Bromley defeated Billericay Town 4–2 on penalties. Peter Adeniyi scored the winning penalty after a 1–1 draw in front a crowd of 3,012. Winning the play-off final meant that Bromley F.C. were promoted to the Conference South.

Bromley retained the Kent Senior Cup with a 3–1 victory over Tonbridge Angels in front of a crowd of 926 at Hayes Lane, and were also runners up in the London Senior Cup to Tooting and Mitcham United.

2007–08 season[edit]

Bromley's first season at the higher level saw the club finish in an eventual eleventh place in the league, even though they had gone into the final round of fixtures with an outside chance of making the playoffs. Mark Goldberg resigned as manager just a few months into the season as a result of other commitments, and was replaced by Simon Osborn, who took on the role of player-manager along with coach Bobby Bowry.

The club's league form was best-described as inconsistent, with some excellent performances being matched by some equally poor ones. The best example of this came over the Christmas and New Year period, when an 8–1 home win over Thurrock was followed by a 2–1 defeat in the return fixture just a few days later.

The club reached the 4th qualifying round of the FA Cup but were beaten 2–1 by Eastbourne Borough, who finished the season as Conference South play-off winners.

In a surprising development at the end of the season, Jerry Dolke stepped down as chairman to be replaced by Paul Greenwood, while the management team of Simon Osborn and Bobby Bowry also left the club. Several weeks later, it was announced that Mark Goldberg was to return for a second spell as manager.

2008–09 season[edit]

This season also resulted in a respectable mid-table finish although the team was eliminated by Hornchurch in the Second Qualifying Round of the FA Cup, whilst exiting the FA Trophy competition away at Swindon Supermarine.

2009–10 season[edit]

The 2009–10 season was another up and down season for Bromley. Despite a poor start results eventually picked up, and the team only lost 1 game in 14 between late August and the start of November. The club also embarked on an FA Cup run that saw them reach the First Round Proper, securing wins against Tonbridge Angels and Conference National club Ebbsfleet United. Bromley were drawn at home against League One side Colchester United and played in front of a crowd of 4,242, losing 4–0.

2010–11 season[edit]

This campaign saw the Ravens finish in a respectable 11th place in the Conference South. They also reached the final of the Kent Senior Cup, but lost 4–1 to Dartford at Prince's Park. In the FA Cup, Bromley got to the 3rd Qualifying round, before losing 3–0 to Chelmsford City in a replay, after the original game ended 2–2. Similarly, their exit from the FA Trophy was also in the 3rd Qualifying round, following a 4–0 defeat to Ebbsfleet United.

2011–12 season[edit]

This time around, the league season was not as successful. Bromley narrowly avoided relegation by just two points, finishing in 17th place. However, the club reached the FA Cup first round, where they faced Leyton Orient at The Matchroom Stadium. After having Aaron Rhule sent off, Orient went on to win the game 3–0. Around 2000 Bromley fans made the trip. However, as had happened the previous year, they crashed out of the FA Trophy in the 3rd Qualifying round, losing out 3–1 to Didcot Town at home.

2012–13 season[edit]

A slight improvement in the league saw Bromley finish four points off the relegation places, in 15th. For the second consecutive season, they also made the First Round of the FA Cup, but lost 3–0 away to Fleetwood, of League Two. In the FA Trophy, the Ravens made the 3rd Round, where they lost 4–2 to Dartford at Prince's Park. This followed an impressive 1–0 home win over Conference Premier side Kidderminster Harriers in the second round. A 45th minute Danny Waldren penalty gave Bromley the lead, before Kidderminster were given a spot-kick in added time at the end of the game. However, Anthony Malbon's effort was well saved by Joe Welch. This season also saw Bromley win the London Senior Cup, beating Kingstonian 2–1 in the final.

Cup exploits[edit]

Bromley won the FA Amateur Cup three times, the third being in 1949 when a then-record crowd of 96,000 watched them beat Romford in the first Wembley final. In 1911 they beat Bishop Auckland at Herne Hill, and in 1938 were victors over Erith & Belvedere in the only all-Kent final. All three Finals were won by the same 1–0 scoreline, and the goal in each game was scored by the player wearing the number 8 shirt.

The Second Round proper of the FA Cup has been reached three times (1937, 1938 and 1945), with First Round appearances on a further nine occasions (1947, 1949, 1950, 1976, 1996, 2006, 2009, 2011 and 2012).

Since entering the FA Trophy in 1974 – following the cessation of the Amateur Cup – they had not gone beyond the Second Round until season 2000–2001 when they reached the Third Round after the competition had been revamped.

Bromley have won the Kent Senior Cup six times and also won the Kent Amateur Cup on twelve occasions. The London Senior Cup has been won on five occasions, most recently beating Kingstonian F.C. in 2013's final, with the London Challenge Cup coming to Hayes Lane in 1996.


Bromley play their home games at The Hayes Lane Stadium, Hayes Lane, Bromley BR2 9EF.

After playing at White Hart Field, Widmore Road and Plaistow Cricket Ground, Bromley moved to Hayes Lane: some 300 yards (270 m) from their present ground – which was purchased in 1938. They had to leave the ground when fire destroyed the main stand in October 1992, but returned in September 1993. The record attendance stands at 10,798 for a game against Nigeria in 1949, but the capacity is now much reduced.

The start of the 2006–07 season saw ground improvements which had been underway throughout the summer completed. The new bar opened, which combines with the old one previously used. The stand has a new board room, new cafe, and lift system. Two new five-a-side football pitches have also been constructed along with a new club shop. The end of 2006 also came with the news that Bromley had fully purchased the land in which the club is built on, giving the club room to build on their stadium.

An extra set of turnstiles was built during the 2007/08 season, giving the ground a "B" grading suitable for Conference National football.

Cray Wanderers and Bromley Ladies FC also play their home games at Hayes Lane.

Current squad[edit]

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

NigeriaGKPaul Agu
EnglandGKSeb Brown
EnglandGKJosh Pelling (dual registration with Hastings United)
EnglandDFJoe Anderson
EnglandDFJack Holland
EnglandDFSam Long
EnglandDFCallum McNaughton
EnglandDFPaul Rodgers
EnglandDFRob Swaine (captain)
EnglandDFEmmanuel Ugo Udoji
EnglandMFLouis Dennis
GhanaMFAli Fuseini
FranceMFPierre Joseph-Dubois
EnglandMFMitchell Pinnock
EnglandMFReece Prestedge
Republic of IrelandMFDamian Scannell
EnglandMFDanny Waldren (vice-captain)
EnglandFWMoses Ademola
WalesFWAdam Birchall
EnglandFWJamie Slabber
EnglandFWJordan Robertson

Out on loan[edit]

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

EnglandDFAdam Bailey-Dennis (at Bishops Stortford)

Coaching staff[edit]

ManagerEngland Mark Goldberg
Assistant ManagerEngland Neil Smith
First Team CoachEngland Hugo Langton
Fitness CoachEngland Mark Hammond
Goalkeeping CoachEngland Glyn Shimell
Forwards CoachEngland Nic McDonnell



  1. ^ "Bromley FC Podcast". Itunes. 4 October 2013. 
  2. ^ Gillingham 4–1 Bromley – BBC Sport
  3. ^ "Memorandum of Procedures For Dealing With Misconduct Occurring". 24 April 2010. Retrieved 2013-04-08. 

External links[edit]