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Forest Town

Est.2000

Venue

The Arena Ground, Clipstone Road West, Forest Town Tel: 01623 635340

Ground Capacity

 500

Home Strip

 Away Strip

Seating  128

Record Attendance

500 v Mansfield Town - Friendly - July 2003
Who are ya? The Ace's
What Division are you in? Step 7 - Central Midland Supreme Division
Websites www.ftafc.co.uk

 

You must have come in a taxi

 From North - At A1 roundabout junction with A614, take the A614 southbound for 7.7miles. At Ollerton Roundbout, stay on the A614, and take the first right onto the B6030. Continue though Clipstone on Clipstone Road for 6.4 miles, before turning left into Main Avenue (opposite the Prince Charles pub), then first right into the Forest Welfare Car Park. The Clod is not the pitch immediately behind the Welfare, but the next pitch down from this. 

From Mansfield - Travel south on the A60, passing Mansfield Town F.C. and the retail parks. Turn left at first major junction onto the B6030 (Clipstone). * Continue for 2.2 miles, before turning right into Main Avenue (opposite the Prince Charles pub), then first right into the Forest Welfare Car Park. The Clod is not the pitch immediately behind the Welfare, but the next pitch down from this. 

From Nottingham - Take the A60 northbound towards Mansfield for 12.6 miles. Turn right onto the onto the B6030 (Clipstone). Then as * above.

From Newark - Take the A617 westbound for 16.2 miles. Turn right onto Oak Tree Lane. Continue for 1.5 miles. Turn right at traffic lights onto B6030 Clipstone Road West. Take the first right into Main Avenue (opposite the Prince Charles pub), then first right into the Forest Welfare Car Park. The Clod is not the pitch immediately behind the Welfare, but the next pitch down from this. 

   East Midlands Stagecoach No.13 (Mansfield Bus Station  - Wellow), No.14 (Mansfield Bus Station - Boughton) & No.15 (Mansfield Bus Station - Walesby) all go along Clipstone Road West.

    Mansfield - 2.2 miles. Catch one of the above buses from Mansfield Bus Station next to the Train Station.

For a map of the location, Click here.

     

My garden shed is bigger than this

Forest Town is known locally as the village that grew out of coal. In 2005, the town celebrated its transformation 100 years ago from a rural backwater into a thriving pit community, when coal was first found at Crown Farm Colliery. The history of the town's football club is decidedly shorter. 

Not to be confused with Hampshire based Forest Town, Nottinghamshire's very own Forest Town were formed in 2000. However, the origins of the Club date back to 1981, when a Sunday team called Village Football Club was founded to play in the Mansfield & District Sunday League. By 1983 the Club had changed it's name to Smith Street Football Club, named after a road on the outskirts of Forest Town. 

In 1986, Town moved to The Clod, a wonderfully named pitch located close to the Forest Town Miners Welfare. In order to acknowledge it's new found status as a colliery side, Town changed it's name to Mansfield Colliery Football Club. In 1988, the Colliery closed down, yet the footballers of Mansfield Colliery were determined to keep the club running. A fresh start signalled a fresh name, Forest Town Welfare Football Club. The intention of this new name was to show that the footballers were now representing the whole of the Forest Town community. Indeed, Forest Town Welfare continue to ply their trade in local Sunday league football. There was, however, a desire to start up a Saturday football team. In January 2000, a group from Forest Town Welfare met together with the management of the Saturday Youth Team Mansfield Colliery U16's  and a few players from Abacus Football Club and agreed to form Forest Town Football Club. Since their recent composition, The Aces, as they are affectionately known, have established themselves in the Central midlands Premier Division. They have also attempted to spread their wings with the formation of a reserve team.

To fully understand the meaning behind the naming of The Ace's home up until 2006, one only has to consult the Oxford English Dictionary: 

Clod klod, n. a thick round mass or lump, that sticks together, esp. of earth or turf.

There could be no better way to describe the condition of the pitch upon which The Ace's used to ply their trade. Silky it was not. 

However, much has changed since my last visit in 2005. The Welfare is now known as the Forest Town Academy, bringing together a variety of local sporting activities for all the community. The Football Club have relocated up the bank, closer to The Arena Ground. Their new pitch is a world away from the Clod, and would certainly be befitting of a Club at a much higher level.  

This new arena could be described as a cycling amphitheatre. The well maintained cycling track circumnavigating the pitch is used by the DARE charity cycling club. A set of white modern dugouts are situated on the Welfare side of the pitch, though these are tiny in comparison to those which were used on The Clod. It is also within the confines of this wonderful new arena where you will also find The Ace's changing rooms. No longer will you have to trek back uphill if your side has just been on the end of a 5-0 drubbing. 

To the north of the pitch area is a magnificent ten-stepped concrete seating area for spectators, probably the finest terraced area remaining in Nottinghamshire football since the implementation of the Taylor Report banned standing at Football League grounds. To the rear of this terraced area, is a cosmopolitan viewing gallery attached to the Welfare. Here' spectators can enjoy a drink on the patio, whilst affording fine views of the action on the pitch below. In 2009, 128 seats were installed, including a covered seating area.

The Welfare itself has recently been revamped, and would have a fair shout at boast of having not only the finest Welfare, but also the finest off-the-pitch non-league facilities of any club in the County. A hospitality area, games room, conservatory and concert room all add to the charm of the place. You will find that whether you choose to stay in, or go out on the splendid patio, the Welfare offers a vast array of beverages and food to please all. 

Future Plans

The Ace's are keen to develop. They were keen to join the inaugural Step 6 League, the East Midlands Counties League in 2008, but missed out due to a lack of permanent floodlights. With the floodlights now in place, the facilities have been granted good enough for the Supreme Division. However, the ambitious Ace's intend to push again for EMCL status as soon as possible.

  

Additional Photography

                                                                                              

                                   

  Click on a thumbnail to view a full size picture.

 

Christopher Rooney - permission required for photo & text usage                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             

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