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Whitton United Profile

Whitton United have had a presence in Ipswich since the late 1800’s, though their present history dates back to 1926, when they are first mentioned in the Suffolk & Ipswich League directory.

The club originally played their games behind the Whitton Crown public house where they won the Minor Cup in 1926/27 season beating Bungay 2-nil in the final held at Leiston, back in the days when they occupied the same league as Ipswich Town. There was a second pitch at Grove Meadow, Whitton Church Lane, which was also used for cows to graze on during the week so players and supporters together were obliged to take the goalposts out of the sockets and place them in the hedge after each game. This pitch was only utilised for a couple of seasons due to obvious problems before the club moved behind the Whitton Maypole public house before moving down the road to the KGV, and over the years gained a great deal of success, to such an extent that several players were lost to Ipswich Town.

 

With much of the early success’ lost to history, we have to wait until 1948 when Whitton United faced Lowestoft Town in the Suffolk Senior Cup at Portman Road, when over 8,000 fans saw the ‘Greens’ lose 3 goals to 1. 

 

Whitton United then had to wait a further 11 years before they reached the final of this competition again. With a very talented side they lifted the trophy in two consecutive years, 1959 and 1960, beating Bungay Town on both occasions with a score of 3-0. In 1992 our final Senior Cup final appearance was made against Long Melford, who we comfortably beat 2-0.

 

Whitton United played their football in various leagues around the Suffolk and Essex area. In the 1970’s, Whitton were going through one of their worst patches in their history both on and off the field. Being relegated from the Essex and Border League and suffering from financial difficulties, Whitton United became members of Division 2 of the Ipswich District League.

 

Under the guidance of Dennis Thrower better times returned to King George V Playing fields. The team was rebuilt and in the coming years success was achieved with the winning of the Second and then the First Divisions which saw us regain our senior status in 1991.

 

Success was maintained during the nineties with the appointment of Graham Emmerson. The team won the Suffolk and Ipswich League Championship in 1993 ands again in 1995. With their ambitions realised it was time to take the club to the next level and joined the Jewson League in the 1995/96 season, finishing a very commendable sixth.

 

Under the management of Kevin Cunningham Whitton reached their best finish in this division of third in 2002, just missing out on promotion. To ensure a bright future for the club, the chairman linked Whitton United with the Suffolk College PASE scheme, which has brought through some very talented youngsters who have not only played for this club but other local teams.

 

With the loss of many players at the start of the 2005/6 season a rebuilding programme was put in place. Manager Ronnie Mauge and his team took the club forward for the following three seasons before resigning in 2007 to be replaced by the reserves manager Gary Thompson together with Neil Gregory as assistant manager. Gary and Neil managed to achieve the clubs first ambition quickly, gaining promotion to the Premier division of the Eastern Counties (Ridgeons) League at their first attempt, which Gary puts down to the perseverance, skill and dedication to the players under him. Gary left the club to join Premier League rivals Tiptree United mid-way through the 2008/2009 season, and was replaced by player-manager Simon Betts.

 

This season Whitton United will be back competing in the FA Cup, the first time since the 1959/60 season where we lost 1-2 to Harwich and Parkeston in the first qualifying round, and the Suffolk Premier Cup. Whitton will also be competing in the FA Vase and the League Challenge Cup, so there are plenty of chances for silverware.


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