Online Club Shop
Ground: The Barton Stadium
Address: Kingsway, Winsford, Cheshire. CW7 3AE           
Telephone: 01606 558447

Midweek Night: Tuesday
Kit Colours Home: Royal Blue Shirts, Royal Blue Shorts & Royal Blue Socks
Kit Colours Away: White Shirts, White Shorts & White Socks
Secretary:                       Robert Astles
Chairman:                       Mark Loveless
Manager:                         Ian Street
Programme Editor:       Robert Astles
Website Controller:      Steve Wright

Directions: From M6 junction 18, follow A54 through Middlewich for approx 3 miles, bear right at roundabout at Winsford Railway Station, follow road for approx 1 mile, turn right into Kingsway, ground is on the right.

Map: Click here

Nearest Railway Station: Winsford

Year Formed: 1883

Record Attendance: 8,000 v. Witton Albion, 1947

Previous Leagues:
Cheshire County League, Northern Premier League

Cheshire Amateur Cup Winners 1900-01, 1902-03
Cheshire League Champions 1920-21, 1976-77
Cheshire League Cup Winners 1949-50, 1955-56, 1959-60, 1976-77, 1978-79, 1979-80, 1980-81
Cheshire Senior Cup Winners 1958-59, 1979-80, 1992-93
Mid-Cheshire Senior Cup Winners 1991-92, 1992-93, 1994-95, 2007-08
Northern Premier League Div 1 Runners up 1991-92
Northern Premier League Premier Division Runners up 1992-93
NWCFL Division 2 Trophy Finalists 2005-06
NWCFL Division 2 Champions 2006-07

County Affiliation: Cheshire FA


Winsford United have a long and proud history, having been formed way back in 1883.  In those early days, the club was called Over Wanderers and competed in the Welsh Combination Football League.  After a few seasons, the club changed to its present name and its present ground - Barton Stadium - although it was called Great Western Playing Field at the outset.  The club brought on many good players during this period and after losing several players to Football League clubs, they experienced a somewhat unsuccessful spell that resulted in the club folding.

United reformed in 1913, thanks in the main to the then secretary, Mr W H Burning, but it was short lived as World War One broke out.  After the cessation of hostilities, United regrouped with a new committee headed by Mr R G Barton (hence Barton Stadium) and the club became a founder member of the Cheshire League, winning the Championship in its second season.  That was to be one of the few successes as the Blues struggled to survive both on and off the field.  During the War, Barton Stadium was almost stripped bare to aid the war effort.  After the war, United became a Limited company and the 1950’s saw the Blues win the Cheshire League Cup three times and a Cheshire Senior Cup victory.  In the 60’s and early 70’s the Blues returned to struggling ways with only a rare FA Cup First Round appearance at Peterborough to shout about.  United lost the game 4-1.  That match acted as a springboard and, under John Williams, Winsford United hit the glory trail.  Between 1976 and 1980, the Blues won the Cheshire League title in 1976/77, were runners-up in 1979/80 and set a new record (which still stands) by winning the League Cup four seasons out of five, including a hat-trick of wins (1977/79/80/81).  They won the Cheshire Senior Cup in 1980 and made an appearance in the quarterfinals of the FA Trophy in 1978.  It was in John Williams’ final season that the former Everton and Welsh International goalkeeper, Neville Southall, was sold to Bury for £6,000.  A sell on clause later netted United a club record figure of around £30,000 when he moved to Goodison Park. After that halcyon period, United’s fortunes again nose-dived.  The Cheshire League changed its name to the North West Counties and the Northern Premier League formed a first division in 1987/8.  The Blues were invited to join but they never really set the place on fire, seventh place being the best achieved.  In January 1991, Winsford were bottom of the NPL First Division and facing a drop back down to the NWCFL.  The club then pulled a masterstroke by appointing Mike McKenzie as team manager.  The Blues lost only four more games and avoided the drop.  A piece of silverware was added when they beat Northwich Vics in the local cup final.  The following season, 1991/92, they gained promotion to the Premier Division, finishing as runners up and reaching the First Round of the FA Cup for only the third time in the club’s history. Season 1992/93 will go down in United’s folklore as ‘Macca’s’ men won an astonishing five trophies - the NPL Challenge Cup, NPL President’s Cup, Cheshire Senior Cup, Mid-Cheshire Senior Cup and NPL Runners Up Cup.  The Blues finished second to Southport and their points total is a record for the most points accrued without winning the title.  Sadly the team then broke up in the summer of 1993 when Mike McKenzie was lured into Conference football.  Three of the side joined pro clubs - Darren Sheridan (Barnsley), Wayne Collins (Crewe) and Jon Whitney (Huddersfield).

The club was given a boost during the summer of 1996 when they received nearly £90,000 from the sale of Wayne Collins to Sheffield Wednesday from Crewe Alexandra.  Three seasons ago, under the management of Dalton Steele, (in only his first season at the club) United finished seventh in the league and lifted the Mid-Cheshire Senior Cup. Season 1998/1999 saw Dalton Steele leave for Chorley half way through the campaign, taking nearly all the team with him; Mark Came took over as stand-in Manager and finished the season off with a makeshift side. The club received another tremendous boost early in 1999 when goalkeeper Andy Oakes who had signed for Hull City for a modest fee but with a 25% sell-on clause was signed by Derby County for £480,000 giving Winsford a record amount for a Non-League sell-on clause. The board of directors were determined that this money was to be spent sensibly on improving the infrastructure of the club, the first move being to install Football League standard floodlights.

Mark Came was then appointed as manager for the 1999/2000 campaign but a run of poor results saw Kevin Tully put in the hot seat. What followed was the worst run of results in the club’s history and relegation for the first time.  At the start of the 2000/2001 season in UniBond Division One Mr Tully left, and Steve Shaughnessy was appointed Player/Manager. The team performed well throughout the season but administrative errors resulted in 6 points being deducted and instead of finishing in a mid-table spot they were relegated to The First Division of the North West Counties League. They had a successful season in the North West Counties Football League, finishing seventh. But Steve Shaughnessy left at the end of the season and Alan Walker and Nick Davis were appointed as joint managers. They brought together a squad of players that was a combination of youth and experience.

After a good start that saw them rise to 7th in the table the team had a disastrous run and as a result Alan Walker left to be replaced by the management team of Gary Thomas and Gus Wilson in January 2003. Relegation could not be avoided and Winsford found themselves in Division Two. It was decided a change of policy was needed and The Blues concentrated on recruiting and developing local talent. To this end Dave Twite was brought in as Manager with Roy Sweeney as his assistant and together they sorted out the best young players in the area and concentrated on a policy of fitness and skill. The partnership gave Winsford three successful seasons, however, promotion was missed each season by just a single point.

It was time for a fresh start and Chris Willcock and John Flanagan took over the team and the Blues led the table from early season right up to the end when they were promoted to Division One as champions.

Surprisingly Chris and John left at the end of the season and moved to Woodley Sports, taking the best players with them.

Once again Winsford were on the lookout for a new Manager and this time they turned to the Liverpool area for Joe Gibiliru who had managed St Helens Town in the First Division. Joe was faced with rebuilding the team and in spite of this he guided the team to a respectable 12th place.

Experienced players were brought in for the 2008-2009 season and this has had an immediate effect with several good performances but it was not to last and the team fought a desperate battle against relegation at the end of the season.

A fresh start was made for the 2009-2010 season and once again Winsford turned to local talent with Terry Murphy as Manager and Mike Alcock and Tony Ledwards as Assistant Managers. Unfortunately both Terry and Mike finished with health problems and Tony was handed the Manager’s job.

Even though Tony strengthened the squad league points were hard to come by and relegation was a distinct possibility. A run of poor results saw Tony resign and Dave Twite and Mike Alcock volunteered to take over until the end of the season. They had an immediate impact with a run of seven games without conceding a goal; this run also took them to two Cup Finals, The Mid-Cheshire Senior Cup and the Vodkat League Challenge Cup.

However a further run of poor results saw them plunge into the bottom four and safety was only ensured in the last two matches of the season.

There was no success in the cup finals with defeat by Northwich Victoria in the Mid-Cheshire Senior Cup Final and a disappointing loss to Abbey Hey in the prestigious Vodkat League Challenge Cup final.

It was felt it was time for a change and so the club advertised for a new management team.

After interviewing several very good applicants the club was approached by former Manager Chris Willcock and after an interview he was handed the reins with Ian Street appointed his Assistant. He immediately set about concentrating on the player’s fitness and also made some very important signings. Once again there was an air of optimism at the Barton Stadium. Part way through the season however, Chris decided to leave and take the job at Woodley Sports. As a result Ian was offered the Managers job. It proved to be a correct decision as Ian with his new assistant, Kevin Bircumshaw let the team to third place in the League and League Challenge Cup Winners.

Ian and Kevin continued into the 2011/12 season.

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