✔844. Northern Area Playing Fields

Washington 1-2 Boro Rangers

Northern League Division Two

Tuesday 13th September 2022

Washington F.C. have finally returned to NE37, 12 years after leaving Albany Park. The club has led a nomadic existence since then, playing home matches at Nissan, New Ferens Park in Durham and most recently at (that awful) Ford Quarry Hub in Sunderland. 

The Mechanics came close to leaving the Northern League in 2017, but were thankfully saved when they joined forces with junior club Washington AFC. A new committee was formed with the main objective to give the junior players a pathway into senior football and return the club to Washington, which they have now achieved. 

Northern Area Playing Fields

Off Stephenson Road, 


Tyne and Wear 

NE37 3HR


The ground is next to the Washington Football Hub within the Stephenson Industrial Estate. Currently there's a diminutive standing enclosure and a 50 seater stand in between the team dugouts on one side, with the other three sides open hard standing. The changing rooms and snack bar is behind the goal, along from the admission hut. 

Washington 1(Reed 90+1)

Boro Rangers 2(Lovatt 23 Lofts 83)

Northern League Division 2 matchday 12v10

15th v 5th

7.45pm ko


Admission £5

Programme £2 (without the supplement which was limited to the first 50 copies)

Boro Rangers grabbed a goal in each half to continue their good start to life in the Northern League with another win. They went ahead midway through the first half when a right wing corner was met by a powerful header from Marty Lovatt, then on 73 minutes a long cross field pass found the unmarked Danny Lofts, who had time to produce a good finish.

Washy kept plucking away throughout the game and halved the deficit late on when Jordan Reed was on hand to fire in a rebound, but it was too little too late and unfortunately not a winning start at their new home. 

✔843 Staithes Athletic Club

Staithes Athletic 2-3 Yarm & Eaglescliffe
North Riding FL - Premier Division
Wednesday 31st August 2022

Staithes is a seaside village in the Scarborough Borough of North Yorkshire, whose name derives from Old English meaning 'Landing-Place'. The village has a long fishing tradition, using the coble, a fishing boat developed on the north-east coast.

Staithes' most famous resident was James Cook who was born in nearby Marton-in-Cleveland. He worked in Staithes as a grocer's apprentice in 1745-46 where he first gained his passion for the sea, before moving to Whitby where he joined the Royal Navy. 

Staithes Athletic played in the Teesside League from 2014, before The Coblemen were placed in the Premier Division of the newly formed North Riding Football League in 2017.

Staithes Athletic Club 

Seaton Crescent, 


North Yorkshire 

TS13 5AY


The ground is at the top of the village, just off the A174 road between Teesside and Whitby, at the top of  Staithes Lane, probably the steepest bank I’ve ever walked up.

The ground is primarily a cricket ground, with wooden bench seating built into the boundary walls. There are several picnic tables and at the top end a couple of memorial seats.


62 miles door-to-door via A19/A174

Current NRFL grounds visited 24/30

This was yet another attempt to tick off this ground. I last visited in January 2020 when I arrived to find no one here, apart from a father and son having a kickabout on the pitch. Every time I planned to visit, the fixture was either postponed or switched to Guisborough, so before I set off this time, I received positive confirmation it wouldn’t be a wasted journey

Staithes Athletic 2(Midgley 57pen Calvert 78)

Yarm & Eaglescliffe 3(Lawrence 25 Fox 27 Rahman 31)

North Riding Football League - Premier Division matchday 5

6.30pm ko



Title chasers Yarm & Eaglescliffe raced into a healthy lead, scoring three goals in the space of six minutes during the first half. They broke the deadlock in the 25th minute when a free kick into the box was cleared, before falling nicely to Sam Lawrence, who smashed in a volley from distance. Two minutes later an effort from Liam Fox hit the crossbar before he raced in to scramble home the rebound, followed by another fabulous goal, this time from Haani Rahman with a superb 25 yard curler. 

Staithes got back into the game when Jacob Midgley fired home a penalty just before the hour mark, then Sam Calvert flicked on a right wing cross to make it 2-3 on 78 minutes. The away side managed to survive late pressure to hold onto the 3 points, in a cracking game, which made it well worth this long wait in visiting Statues Athletic. 

✔842 Dean Bank Recreation Ground

Ferryhill Athletic 1-2 Wearmouth CW
Wearside League 2nd Division Challenge Cup
Saturday 27th August 2022
Ferryhill is a former mining town in County Durham, which developed in the 1900s around the coal industry, with the last pit closing in 1968. The town is situated to the west of the Ferryhill Gap on the mediaeval Great North Road, which is now the A167.

The original Ferryhill Athletic formed in 1921, but football in the town dates back to 1880 when they were the first team to play the mackems. Athletic were Northern League champions in 1938, 1948 and 1958, as well as plenty of cup success in the Durham Challenge Cup, Benevolent Bowl, and winners of the Durham Amateur Cup in their debut season. The club played at the Darlington Road ground, which attracted a large support and it was the venue for the record F.A. Cup victory, when they beat Skinningrove Works 18-0 in the 1953-54 season. 

The club were relegated into the Wearside League in 1997, before eventually folding in 2005. They reformed on New Years Eve 2021, a full century after the original club was founded. The club had been playing as Durham FC. before the return of the Ferryhill Athletic F.C. name, with ambitions to return to the Northern League.


21 mile drive door-to-door

Current Wearside League grounds visited 38/42

Dean Bank Recreation Ground

Hackworth Close



DL17 8PS 

The club is based at the Recreation Ground, which is also home to Ferryhill Town Youth FC. The ground is situated on the far side of Dean Bank Park, where the club headquarters houses the changing rooms, trophy room and cafe. The pitch is to the right of the building and is fully enclosed on three sides, with another 3 full size pitches at the bottom of the bank.

Ferryhill Athletic 1(Young 86)

Wearmouth CW 2(McDonald 26 Dodds 35)

2nd Division League Challenge Cup

2.30pm ko


Programme £1

Ferryhill faced the current cup holders Wearmouth CW, who advanced to the next round in defence of their trophy. The home team were unlucky not to be awarded a penalty, before Steven McDonald volleyed home from a left wing cross, followed by an unmarked Jamie Dodds making it 0-2 at half time. 

The Latics had several chances to get back into the game, but left it too late to half the deficit, when Sean Young got on the end of a neat through ball to fire in on 86 minutes.

Around The Alliance - part 27

838. Burradon Welfare

Burradon & New Fordley 3-1 Killingworth

Northern Alliance Premier Division

Wednesday 10th August

AFC New Fordley left their Annitsford Welfare home at the start of the 2020-21 season and merged with Burradon. The club played at their old home venue at the John Willie Sams Centre in Dudley, while the ground works were taking place at Burradon Welfare. Their new ground has two grass pitches and a 4G cage. The club uses the corner pitch which is fully railed with a dugout on each side, with the changing room facilities in the community centre. 

The Ford faced Premier Division champions Killingworth in their second of three home matches in a week. The away side took the lead in the 30th minute when a free kick from the edge of the box was rolled into the path of Lewis Burns, who smashed an unstoppable shot into the far corner.

The hosts equalised just before half time when Lee Waugh fired in from the penalty spot after being shoved to the ground in the box. Just before the hour mark, a Waugh header came back off the crossbar, but Konnor Lamb was on hand to net the rebound. The Yellows secured the win with a lovely chip from Waugh to give them maximum points from their opening two home matches. 

Match stats

AFCB&NF 3(Waugh 42pen,83 Lamb 59)

KFC 1(L.Burns 30)


Admission £2

Programme £1

839. Monkseaton High School

Whitley Bay Sporting Club ‘A’ 1-2 Hazlerigg Victory

Northern Alliance 3rd Division

Wednesday 17th August 2022

Whitley Bay Sporting Club has two teams in the Northern Alliance this season, both based at Monkseaton High School just outside the town. The school has an impressive space age building designed by Devereux Architects, with the pitch at the top end of the school. The teams use cabins for changing facilities, situated in the corner of the pitch.

Visitors Hazlerigg took an early lead, when a long ball over the top from Bews sent Scott Stewart on his way to calmly put them ahead. They doubled their advantage on 71 minutes when a corner kick wasn’t cleared and eventually fell to Adam Dobson, who poked the ball home. The home team pulled one back late on when Adam Gregory connected from a corner, but they were unable to deny Victory... victory.  

Match Stats

WBSCA 1(Gregory 86)

HVFC  2(Scott 6 Dobson 71)


840. Walker Riverside Academy

Newcastle East End 0-1 Bedlington

Northern Alliance 1st Division

Saturday 20th August 2022

Having already seen Newcastle East End seniors play at two different grounds, they have relocated again, now playing home games at Walker Riverside Academy. The changing rooms are in the main building with the pitch across the road, on an elevated level. 

I don’t know how East End ended up losing this game, as they dominated throughout and if they had played all night they still wouldn’t have scored. Bedlington twice cleared efforts off their own goal line and ‘keeper Luke Cuthbertson made several good saves to maintain a clean sheet. The decisive goal came in the 26th minute, when a corner from the right struck Andrew McClennan, to wrong foot the goalie and give them a fortunate win, in what turned out to be in torrential conditions. 

Match Stats


BFC 1(McClennan 26)


841. Dinnington Welfare

Hazlerigg Victory 0-1 Benton

Northern Alliance 3rd Division 

Wednesday 24th August 2022

 Hazlerigg Victory have returned to the Northern Football Alliance this season and are now based at DinningtonWelfare.  Dinnington is a former mining village, 9 miles north of Newcastle city centre and just a five minute drive from Newcastle International Airport. The ground isn't sign posted, but is found just off Main Street in the middle of the village. The changing rooms are at the Welfare entrance, with the pitch at the far end through the park.

A tight encounter was settled in the final twenty minutes, with Alliance newcomers Benton coming out on top. The match was finely poised when a shot from outside the box was well saved by the 'keeper, but Callum Williams was on hand to knock in the rebound. 

For the final match in this episode of Around the Alliance, I was joined by north London based Groundhopper "Wilko", who must now hold the record as the most southerly based football fan to visit the Rigg in Dinnington. 

Match Stats


BFC 1(Williams 71)