|Full name||Wealdstone Football Club|
|Nickname(s)||The Stones, The Royals|
|Ground||Grosvenor Vale, Ruislip|
|Capacity||3,607 (329 seated)|
|League||National League South|
|2015–16||National League South, 13th|
Wealdstone Football Club is a football club in Ruislip, west London, England, which is affiliated to the Middlesex County Football Association. The club are members of the Vanarama National League South, play in royal blue shirts, white shorts and royal blue and white socks, and are nicknamed "The Stones" or "The Royals".
The club appeared in the first televised football match in 1946, when the BBC showed part of their league match against Barnet. They were also the first club to win the non-League 'double', claiming both the FA Trophy and the Gola League (National League) in 1984–85.
The club was formed at the start of the 1899–1900 season. Their first game was a friendly match on 7 October 1899 against Northwood, which they won 6–1. They joined Division Two of the Willesden & District League, and were promoted to Division One for the 1900–01 season after Division Two was scrapped. In 1903 they moved to the College Farm Ground in Locket Road In 1905–06 the club won Division One, but on 20 October 1906 a notice was posted in the local newspaper stating that the club was being disbanded due to a lack of interest from players and supporters.
The club was reformed in time for the 1908–09 season, rejoining Division One of the Willesden & District League. In 1910 they moved to Belmont Road, and won Division One again in 1912–13. Following World War I the club joined the London League and the Middlesex Senior League. They moved to the Lower Mead ground at the start of the 1922–23 season, when they also switched to the Spartan League. The club had their record win on 13 October 1923, beating the 12th London Regiment 22–0 in an FA Amateur Cup game. In 1928–29 they switched leagues again, this time joining the Athenian League. In 1929–30 the club won the Middlesex Senior Cup and the Middlesex Senior Charity Cup for the first time.
During World War II the club continued to play, playing at Wembley Stadium in the final of the Middlesex Senior Red Cross Cup in 1943. The following year they recorded their heaviest-ever defeat, losing 14–0 to Edgware Town in the London Senior Cup. In 1946 the BBC showed part of Wealdstone's Athenian League match at Barnet, the first time a live match had been televised. The club also appeared in the BBC's first two live FA Cup match broadcasts, with their games against Edgware Town in the third qualifying round and Colchester United in the fourth qualifying round being shown on television during the 1949–50 season. After beating Colchester, Wealdstone reached the first round of the FA Cup for the first time, losing 1–0 to Port Vale.
In 1951–52 the club won the Athenian League, and went on to win the Middlesex Senior Cup in 1959, 1963 and 1964. In 1964 they switched to the Isthmian League. In 1965–66 the club reached the first round of the FA Cup again, losing 3–1 at Millwall, but went on to win the FA Amateur Cup, beating local rivals Hendon 3–1 in the final. The following season saw Wealdstone entered at the first round of the FA Cup, losing 2–0 at home to Nuneaton Borough.
The club joined the Division One North of the Southern League in 1971, turning professional. They were moved to Division One South the following season, and won the division in 1973–74, earning promotion to the Premier Division. In 1977–78 Wealdstone progressed beyond the first round of the FA Cup for the first time; after beating Third Division Hereford United 3–2 at Edgar Street in a first round replay, they went on to defeat Fourth Division Reading 2–1 at home, before losing 4–0 at QPR in the third round.
In 1979 the club were founder members of the Alliance Premier League, the new national top division of non-League football. After finishing 19th in 1980–81 they were relegated back to the Southern League, but made an immediate return after winning the South Division of the Southern League the following season; a play-off ensued against Midland Division champions Nuneaton, with Wealdstone winning on penalties after winning the home leg 2–1 and losing 1–0 away.
In 1984–85 the club won the Alliance Premier League, and also went on to win the FA Trophy, beating Boston United 2–1 in the final. However, a period of decline set in; after finishing tenth the following season, they finished 19th in 1986–87, and were relegated the season after.
At the end of the 1990–91 season financial problems led to the club selling their Lower Mead ground, for which they eventually only received a small share of the sale proceeds. They signed up to an expensive groundsharing arrangement at Watford's Vicarage Road, and at the end of the 1991–92 season the club were relegated again, dropping from the Southern League Premier Division into the South Division. In 1993 they moved to the Warren, Yeading's ground. In 1995 the club rejoined the Isthmian League, dropping into Division Three, and moved grounds again, this time sharing at Edgware Town's White Lion Ground. After winning the division in 1996–97, they finished second in Division Two in 1997–98 and were promoted again, this time to Division One. After finishing third in Division One the 1998–99 they were denied promotion to the Premier Division after ground improvements at the White Lion Ground were made six days after the deadline.
In 2004 the club were promoted to the Premier Division as a result of the creation of the Conference North and South and winning a play-off against Dulwich Hamlet. In 2005 the club moved to Northwood's Chestnut Avenue ground. In 2006 they were switched to the Southern League Premier Division for a single season, before returning to the Isthmian League.
In January 2008 Wealdstone bought Ruislip Manor's Grosvenor Vale ground, starting the 2008–09 season there. In 2011–12 the club reached the FA Trophy semi-finals, losing 3–1 to Newport County. They also reached the promotion play-offs in the Premier Division, but lost 2–1 to Lowestoft Town in the semi-finals. The following season saw them losing in the play-off semi finals again, this time against Concord Rangers. However, in 2013–14 the club were Premier Division champions, earning promotion to the Conference South.
Wealdstone's main traditional local rivals for many years were Barnet, Enfield and Hendon, who were all leading teams in the Athenian and Isthmian leagues from the 1950s into the 1980s. However, these rivalries have lapsed over time with Barnet's rise into the Football League, Enfield's plunge down the football ladder and Hendon being regularly less successful than in its glory days.
Most Wealdstone fans now consider Harrow Borough to be their biggest rivals, owing purely to the clubs' geographical proximity. For several years the two clubs only met if they were drawn together in cup competitions, as they played in different leagues, but when they were both members of the Isthmian League Premier Division, they played each other regularly. In 2012–13 the rivalry with Enfield was resumed with the latter's promotion to the Isthmian League Premier Division.
- As of 28th October 2016
Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.
Notable former players
Professional players to have played for Wealdstone include:
- Jermaine Beckford
- Vinnie Jones
- Keith Lawrence
- Stuart Pearce
- Hugh Lindsay
- Charlie Townsend
- Billy Stagg
- Alliance Premier League
- Champions 1984–85
- Isthmian League
- Southern League
- Athenian League
- Champions 1951–52
- Willesden & District League
- Division One champions 1905–06, 1912–13
- FA Trophy
- Winners 1984–85
- FA Amateur Cup
- Winners 1965–66
- Middlesex Premier Cup
- Winners 2003–04, 2007–08, 2008–09, 2010–11
- London Senior Cup
- Winners 1951–52 (shared with Wimbledon)
- Middlesex Senior Cup
- Winners 1929–30, 1937–38, 1940–41, 1941–42, 1942–43, 1945–46, 1958–59, 1962–63, 1963–64, 1967–68, 1984–85
- Middlesex Charity Cup
- Winners 1929–30, 1930–31, 1937–38, 1938–39, 1949–50, 1963–64, 1967–68, 2003–04, 2010–11
- Middlesex Junior Cup
- Winners 1912–13
- Find a Club Middlesex County FA
- "Today's visitors: Wealdstone - club history" Boreham Wood Football Club
- Wealdstone at the Football Club History Database
- Official website
- Wealdstone F.C. on Twitter
- Wealdstone F.C. on Facebook
- Youtube channel
- Wealdstone FC Supporters Club