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Historic promotion for Melksham Town!

Town players celebrate promotion

MELKSHAMTown FC has won promotion to the Southern League – the highest league the team has ever played in – after a nail-biting end to the season finished with them runners-up in the Toolstation Western League Premier Division.

Town won their last seven games in dramatic style to see off promotion rivals Bradford Town, Willand Rovers and Buckland Athletic.

They clinched promotion with a memorable 3-1 win in the final game of the season at Willand and when Buckland, who could have drawn level on points but needed to score over 30 goals in four games, were beaten last week.

The Southern League will be the highest level that the club has played at in its 142-year history.

Luke Ballinger equalises.

Chairman Darren Perrin said, “I’m absolutely elated for everyone at the football club. It’s come three years too late, after we won the league but were denied promotion because of the quality of our grounds, but it’s fantastic to finally go up, the club deserves it.

“Huge congratulations to Kieran (Baggs) and the players. I’m delighted for Kieran who has worked bloody hard in his first season as manager. He and the players really stepped up to the plate and they have got what they deserved. To win seven games on the trot, speaks volumes about their attitude and determination.”

Manager Kieran Baggs added,  “It’s fantastic news for everyone involved. I couldn’t be more delighted and want to thank the club, the chair, committee, fans and players for all their support for me as manager. The support we have had has been of a different standard – the team is so well supported on and off the pitch. And the crowds we’ve had this season at games have been some of the biggest.

Ballinger puts Town ahead.

“It’s been a fantastic season and it is nice to achieve promotion, continuing the tradition of the past five years of winning something.

“The hard work starts again now as we face one of our biggest challenges, going into the Southern League. We’ll need to sit down and focus on our pre-season fixtures, put together a top-notch training programme, and look for new signings to help strengthen the team.It’s a very exciting time.

“We need the fans to keep up their incredible support and in the new season, turn out in bigger numbers. I’m really excited to see what Town can do next, and to give it a go in the Southern League.”

The promotion brings to an end an exciting year for the club who played their first full season at Oakfields. Highlights also included an historic run in the FAVase quarter-finals; record crowds at home games; and new sponsors including infiLED who gifted the club a giant state-of-the-art LED display screen.

Manager Kieran Baggs with club chairman Darren Perrin.

“This year has been a whirlwind, extremely busy and very successful for the club,” said Darren. “The FA Vase run was fantastic; it was brilliant and heart-breaking all at the same time.But the exposure for the club and the TVappearances have taken this club to the next level. I want to say a big thank you to all our sponsors as there would be no Melksham Town FC without them. The sponsors and the supporters have been absolutely fantastic, I can’t praise them enough.

“Also, big thanks to the other managers who work at the club, the youth teams, the other players; none of this would be possible without them. We are one club, and are truly a ‘black and yellow’ family.

“Football seasons always come round quickly, so we’ll be ready to go again for the new season in the SouthernLeague. We have some massive news coming up in the next two weeks about our home pre-season friendlies – it’s going to be big.”

The club will be hosting an end of season party at the bar in Oakfields this Saturday, 12th May. “Everyone is welcome,” says Darren.

See our picture spread on the Willand match here.

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