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Thursday 16th November 2006 ko 19.45

London Senior Cup 2nd Round


TOOTING & MITCHAM UNITED 2 ( Gibbs 55 Green 68)

Att c150

Entry & Teamsheet £6

On the face of it there are no end of clubs in groundshares; you really don’t need me to give examples! Suffice it to say the rule amongst groundhoppers is to tick off the ground for either the landlords, or of there isn’t one, then the primary tenant. But in a hobby that attracts those who like their rules to be both hard and fast there are a few exceptions!

One would be something like the Middlesex FA Ground  in Northolt, that has no tenant at all. Your only decisions there are which game to see, and do you aim to tick both pitches? But here’s another groundsharing conundrum- Park View Road, in Bexley. 

Noone seems to know just how old the place is save for the grandstand dating from the 1930’s. It was home to Bexley United who folded pre-war but were reformed as Bexleyheath & Welling in 1952 before changing their name to the more historically accurate Bexley United in 1963. They played Southern League football before financial trouble saw them fold in 1976. 

Welling United, who’d formed in 1963 had been playing in nearby Eltham secured a 15-year lease on Park View Road, and moved there in 1977. They’ve been there ever since and have moved from the London Spartan League, via the Athenian and Southern Leagues, to the Conference/ National League. They played 3 seasons in the Premier division, from 2013-16 but play in the National South this season

But there is another side to the Park View Road coin. Erith & Belvedere were formed in 1922 and played, slightly confusingly at Park View. When a fire destroyed their stand in 1977 they opted to secure a new home rather than rebuild so 2 years later moved into Park View Road. Now that this point you’re probably seeing this as them moving into a groundshare. You’d me correct, but the devil is in the detail, because this isn’t a straightforward groundshare….

The Dere’s old Park View site was sold in 2001 and the money used to improve their new home. A new stand and changing rooms, in Erith and Belvedere blue was built, so you could say one side of the ground is Welling United and the other Erith & Belvedere. At Welling game the teams change under the old stand, at an Erith and Belvedere, its under the modern stand. 

Perhaps the way to attack the subject is to sit in the 1930’s stand if you’re watching Welling and the more modern edifice for Erith and Belvedere. I’ll leave you to work out what you should do if one were to play the other- reasonably unlikely with the Deres playing in the Southern Counties East League. 

I suspect if I were to run a poll on the subject most would see Park View Road as Welling’s ground but I do think this view sells the Deres slightly short. But what do you think?