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Clubs seeking to leave or join the SWPL


Guest The Judge aka RED OR DEAD
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Guest The Judge aka RED OR DEAD

BARNSTAPLE TOWN have delayed making a decision on their future in the Toolstation Western League — running the risk of a £1,000 fine. With relegation a real possibility — they are 11 points adrift at the bottom of the table — there is a school of thought that says Barum would be better off playing in the Carlsberg Peninsula Premier Division rather than the Western League First Division. The argument is they would save on travel costs, with the Western League's second tier dominated by clubs from Somerset and Bristol.

However, the deadline for clubs to notify the Western League of an intention to withdraw passed on New Year's Eve with no word from Barnstaple. If they were to pull out now, they would face a fine of up to £1,000. The club are understood to favour remaining in the Western League, but no final decision will be made until relegation is confirmed.

A notice of withdrawal from Division One (East) Buckfastleigh went in before the December 31 deadline, though the decision wasn't confirmed until last night and met with little sympathy from SWPL secretary Phil Hiscox. "To be honest, they (Buckfastleigh) were never going to do the work on their facilities that they had received special dispensation for, so it stops the league from throwing them out in any case.

Is there not a precident from the FA, that if a club takes voluntary relegation, they must drop 3 Divisions (Canvey Island - Conference to Ryman Div 1 North). Canvey wanted to drop to Ryman Prem (2 Divs lower) but were told they must go down 3 Divs. How would this ruling apply to the 2 Devon clubs (no bias intended here) ?

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Is there not a precident from the FA, that if a club takes voluntary relegation, they must drop 3 Divisions (Canvey Island - Conference to Ryman Div 1 North). Canvey wanted to drop to Ryman Prem (2 Divs lower) but were told they must go down 3 Divs. How would this ruling apply to the 2 Devon clubs (no bias intended here) ?

If Barnstaple Town finish in the bottom two of the Western League Premier Division, it won't be any sort of "voluntary" relegation, it would be a standard relegation from a Step 5 division to a Step 6 one, whether it be the Western League Division One or the South West Peninsula League Premier Division.

As for Buckfastleigh, I believe they intend taking their reserve side's place in the S Devon League Division Three, which I believe is a four level drop - although as they are top they could end up promoted and it becomes a three level drop anyway.

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Richard

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The operative word here is IF. My understanding is, that they may take voluntary relegation IF they do not finish bottom 2, perhaps they are under the impression that they can just take one step down IF that is to be the case.

What IF no club from the SWPL Prem wants to go up, does that mean that Barum would be forced to join Western 1 even IF that may not be the preferred choice ?

I'd say there is absolute Zero chance of Barnstaple Town dropping down if they don't absolutely have to. One (former?) director implied it might be worth thinking about but the whole committee disagreed with him. The difference in income would be an absolute killer, just from the annual match at home to Bideford. If they did, they might as well drop down to the North Devon League.

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Richard

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Elmore FC (Tiverton) must be thinking long term of a move across to the SWPL(P) or even a drop down to the SWPL(Div1E).

Currently 4th from bottom in the Western League Div1 they are the only Devon team in that division with nearest clubs Minehead (Somerset) 32M and Bridport(Dorset) 42M and have the most seasonal mileage of 1329M.

The Western League Div.1 is more central to Bristol and latest news is that Minehead(next to bottom) have submitted a provisional intention to resign from the league at the end of the season.

I agree with Richard regarding Barnstaple who will want to stay in the same league as Bideford for the big Derby(635 gate on Boxing day) but if they get relegated the SWPL must be an option.

To drop to the North Devon League (A feeder League to the SWPL) will be similar to Cornwall Combination standard which would mean NO F A Cup/ Vase.

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