Eastern Counties Football League
Eastern Counties Football League
Country  England
Founded 1935
Divisions Premier Division
Division One
Number of teams 39
Promotion to Isthmian League
Relegation to Anglian Combination
Cambridgeshire League
Essex and Suffolk League
Suffolk and Ipswich League
Levels on pyramid Levels 9–10
Domestic cup(s) League Cup
First Division Cup
Website Official website
Football current event.png 2020–21 season

The Eastern Counties Football League, currently known as the Thurlow Nunn League for sponsorship purposes, is an English football league at levels 9 and 10 of the English football league system. It currently contains clubs from Norfolk, Suffolk, northern Essex and eastern Cambridgeshire, and is a feeder to Division One North of the Isthmian League.

History

Formation

During the early part of the 20th century there were several leagues covering East Anglia, including the Norfolk & Suffolk League, the East Anglian League, the Essex & Suffolk Border League and the Ipswich & District League, whilst some of the larger clubs (including Ipswich Town and Cambridge Town) played in the Southern Amateur League. Suggestions of forming a league to cover the whole region had been made since the early 1900s, but intensified after Norwich City were promoted to Division Two of the Football League in 1934 and saw a significant rise in attendances. During the 1934–35 season there was a strong movement in Harwich and Ipswich for the formation of such a league and after canvassing, a 'Meeting of Representatives of East Anglian Football Clubs' was held at the Picture House in Ipswich on 17 February 1935. The ten clubs in attendance were Cambridge Town, Harwich & Parkeston and Ipswich Town from the SAL, Colchester Town and Crittall Athletic from the Spartan League, and Gorleston, Great Yarmouth Town, King's Lynn, Lowestoft Town and Norwich CEYMS from the Norfolk & Suffolk League. Although Cambridge Town and Norwich CEYMS later decided against joining, a further four clubs were recruited; Bury Town and Thetford Town from the Norfolk & Suffolk League, Chelmsford City from the London League and Clacton Town from the Ipswich & District League.

Current members

Premier Division

Division One North

Division One South

Former clubs

Sixty-six clubs have previously played in the Eastern Counties League, including several reserve and 'A' teams. The league's geographical span has previously stretched from Gillingham in Kent in the south to Boston in Lincolnshire in the north and Eynesbury in Cambridgeshire in the west. In the 1940s and 1950s it contained up to four 'A' teams from London.

Membership rejected

Between its inception in 1935 and the formalisation of promotion and relegation between the ECL and its feeder leagues in 1983, several clubs applied to join the Eastern Counties League but were rejected, or were approached by the league but turned the offer of admission down. These included:

Applied to the league but were rejected

Approached by the league but declined

External links

Template:Eastern Counties Football League Premier Division teamlist Template:Eastern Counties Football League Division One teamlist Template:Eastern Counties Football League seasons

Football in England
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Isthmian League (Prem, 1N, 1SC) List of stadiums Conference League Cup (Defunt)
(by capacity) FA Vase
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