Club’s history in the making

New Mills AFC historian Allan Jones is preparing a book on the club
New Mills AFC historian Allan Jones is preparing a book on the club
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THE PUBLICATION of a book which will provide a unique insight into the history of one of the High Peak’s top football clubs is to help celebrate its 125th anniversary.

New Mills Football Club will be marking 125 years of football this year after supporter Allan Jones unearthed match reports dating back to 1886.

A picture of New Mills with the Manchester League Championship trophy which was won in 1926. The Millers were crowned champions for the second time in three years and scored an impressive 136 goals in just 34 matches. Can you name any of the players shown?

A picture of New Mills with the Manchester League Championship trophy which was won in 1926. The Millers were crowned champions for the second time in three years and scored an impressive 136 goals in just 34 matches. Can you name any of the players shown?

Among its plans to commemorate the anniversary include an exhibition of memorabilia in the town’s Heritage Centre to coincide with the New Mills Festival in September, a grand reunion of former players, club officials and supporters at New Mills Town Hall in mid-October and a series of prestigious pre-season friendly matches.

Also pencilled in is a talk on the history by Allan, as well as the publication of a predominantly picture-led book - and the club historian and long-time Millers fan is appealing for people with old memorabilia such as old programmes, photographs or press cuttings to get in touch.

Allan said: “It is a double celebration really, because we also moved onto the Church Lane ground 90 years ago in September and it would be great to be able to look at the ups and downs of the club during this period.

“Apart from a booklet published in 1974, which was only about 20 pages long, nobody has done anything like this before.

“It is amazing when you look at the size of the town and the heights New Mills AFC have reached in their history, right up to being on the verge of getting into the Evo-Stik League.”

Allan can vividly recall his earliest memories of New Mills AFC as being the 1967 Gilgryst Cup final against near-neighbours and bitter rivals Glossop North End.

On that occasion, the Millers beat them 4-3 away, and drew 1-1 at home to win 5-4 on aggregate and lift the trophy for the fourth time.

“You couldn’t have asked for a better final,” he said. “There is quite a bit of history between the clubs.

“Barrie Welsh was one of my childhood heroes - I’ve researched him quite a bit. In four years he scored 230-something goals and 29 hat-tricks, an amazing record.”

To help make the celebrations a success, Allan also wants to hear from any former players and club officials. He can be contacted on 01942 494313, through the club’s website www.newmillsafc.co.uk or by emailing allanjones@newmillsafc.co.uk.