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 Naive question

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Once and Future Fan



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Join date : 2013-10-21

PostSubject: Naive question   21.10.13 4:58

In posting this, I should first declare an interest – I was a highly dedicated supporter of Aylesbury United from early childhood until the birth of my children. I invested more time and effort than was healthy, following the team home and away over nearly 30 years.

I was present at a lot of key events – some of the last games at Turnfurlong, the first game at Buckingham Road, winning the Southern League, FA Cup occasions and so on. When Sir Cliff of Hercules did the Duck Walk, Kingstonian 1994, I was there.

I contributed to life around the club – first informally, and later in a more “official” capacity.

I stopped being actively involved about 10 years ago – mainly because of the time pressures created by building a young family and trying to progress my career – but also because it seemed to me that the regime in charge of the club at the time were wilfully running it down.

Put simply, I used to go to football for a bit of fun, a good-natured sing-song and a bit of escapism. It wasn’t fun any more – it had become an emotional drain. I didn’t have the time and energy for that… and I still don’t.

Back in the mists of time, there was never any question which team I would support – Aylesbury United was my home town club.

I don’t live in Aylesbury any more, but I live close enough that I could come to games on occasion – particularly since my children are now older, and at least one of them might want to come along.

Except – Aylesbury United no longer plays in what was my home town. Thankfully, it still plays, and from what I can see, seems to have turned a corner both in terms of results, and of having people in charge of the club with its best interest at heart.

But there is now another home town club, called Aylesbury FC. I don’t know much about Aylesbury FC - it seems pretty impressive that they are at the level they have reached – but with an average attendance of less than 150 this season, they hardly seem to be capturing the town’s imagination.

So – there are two Aylesbury clubs.

Both at the same level of the pyramid – about four levels below where the town’s club once played.

And both getting attendances, even when they are playing each other, of less than a quarter of what the town’s club used to get on a regular basis.

I had a look at some recent postings on the forum of both clubs – many have a depressing air about them, I’m afraid – a lot of pretty childish “us and them” stuff from both sides – for every petty reference to “Bedfordshire Nomads” there’s something equally petty about “Haywoods” or “Stocklake”.

Now I realise I am being wilfully naïve here. And I realise that there will be 10 years of back story with which I have made little effort to keep up. But…

- One Aylesbury club has a proud history and, attendance figures would suggest, greater latent support
- The other Aylesbury club has a base in the town.

So one club has what the other one could never have, and the other club has what the other one desperately needs.

So, why are there two clubs? Could there ever be just one? Or are there too many egos involved?

As well as providing me with some education about what I’ve missed, I hope this post triggers some reasoned debate.

Looking forward to enlightenment…
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Will afc



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Join date : 2013-07-13

PostSubject: Re: Naive question   21.10.13 5:14

Personally afc don't give a s**t about united , it's nice to have the rivalry and the banter , winning at there Bedfordshire ground was a brilliant day and more important to finally show them that afc are here to stay ,

I don't think the clubs will ever merge not whilst the two teams have the boards members they both got now ,
Afc attendences have slowly been growing every season but we our still a newish club so it's going to take time ,
Personally I don't think united sre a threat to us any more
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PostSubject: Re: Naive question   21.10.13 5:54

Probably not a popular answer but I want to see one club, think we can be greater than the sum of our individual parts.
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mikefarquharson

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PostSubject: Re: Naive question   21.10.13 17:51

There were opportunities a few years ago and if it was ever going to happen then that was the time. Today there isn't a hope in hell of the two clubs coming together. Utd keep talking about a return to the Town and if it happens good luck to them, it won't be sharing at Haywood Way for sure and I can't see the council bring them back in the current climate so unless they have pots of money and land I can't see that happening.
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Pris_Ris_Scott

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PostSubject: Re: Naive question   21.10.13 20:49

i started going to FC very soon after i moved to the area over a year ago.

i admit to everyone i meet that i was actually scouting out which of the local teams i was going to support. Premier League football seems to loose a bit of its soul each season, so i had decided i'd get into Non league, and no better time to do that than when you move to a new area.

i knew there were two alylesbury clubs, but i had'nt actually heard of either of them, so with an open mind i checked out the message boards, the websites and decided to go check them out

my first stop was FC, and that was it. i instantly fell in love with the club, the fans, the ground and have more than adopted them as my team. a really friendly bunch and very welcoming. there was no question of going to another team to 'see what it was like'

since ive started going regularly, ive heard alot about the history and bitterness with the ducks. i have to admit i love the rivalry. both sides have a good reason to believe in themsleves and both sides have ammunition to throw at eachother on match day. quite a lot our songs feature the ducks. rivalry and that partisan mindset that come from it are one of the main reasons i go to football.


when it comes to your question about could there be one club in aylesbury again?


lets pretend that all the hurdles of pretty much no one who goes to the matches actually wanting that etc. (bare in mind from our perspective - any fans who came accross to us did so for a reason and have cut emotional ties with UTD - and any new fans like myself, only know FC and want nothing to do with utd.)

you are essentially left with only two options as to how you'd go about forming the single club

1) the teams merge and to appease the fans of both sets they take on a new identidy (aylesbury athletic playing in yellow for example)

2) one of the teams is absorbed into the other - essentially handing over their assets and disappearing.


i dont see any UTD fans being happy with the first option. they love banging on about history and what not, and changing their badge/name/coulour should be unthinkable for them. and despite us being a young club there is a whole core of younger fans who only know FC, and also would fight against the chaging of our name and colours etc. (yes i know we have an older section of support whove seen those exact things happen already)

and option 2 is quite frankly unthinkable. which ever fan base loses out would never give their support to the other.



i cant see it happening.
















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Will afc



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PostSubject: Re: Naive question   21.10.13 21:25

Top notch read there Scott,
Glad you fallen for fc mate ,
Agree with u though take ducks history away and they got nothing ,
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mikefarquharson

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PostSubject: Re: Naive question   21.10.13 21:30

Nice one Scott, great to have you as a supporter! I had 20+ years following United but I became disallusioned by a lot of things at the club that I didn't like and drifted away watching games at Tring and Thame as well. Then one day, when actually the team was Haywood Utd I popped across and then just kept popping back and got more and more involved. My enthusisam has been restored and yes there are ups and downs but it's great. Will we ever have the success that Utd had in the past? Who knows but actually I don't care! enjoy my Saturday's and Tuesdays chatting rubbish with my mates and enjoying football again
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DB

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PostSubject: Re: Naive question   21.10.13 23:59

Is this the kind of childish stuff you mean OAFF Laughing 

Aylesbury united history
1897 founded
1951 FACup 1st round proper
1976 Semi Pro
1980s/90s http://goo.gl/maps/eAiTC
1990/00s   http://goo.gl/maps/bKKwu
2012/13   Promoted from the SSMPL
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Old Plumb

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PostSubject: Re: Naive question   22.10.13 1:26

Hi OAFF,I suggest you ask the custodians of the AUFC over the past years that one. ie.the builders and property developers that were supposed too look after the club,where did it all go. These recent years the club is still a limited company, which was purchased by the the existing Chairman and has share holders . Up to three official meetings too amalgamate the two clubs have been tried,the last one AFC going to the extent of changing their name as agreed my both to AFC before the county FA dead line. Three times bitten four times shy I reckon, O P.
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Once and Future Fan



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PostSubject: Re: Naive question   23.10.13 10:02

Many thanks for the thoughtful responses – heartening to see that my post was taken in the right spirit (by most, at least). A few observations:

“Personally I don't think united are a threat to us any more”

Why would they need to be a threat? Would working together necessarily be a threat?

“Probably not a popular answer but I want to see one club, think we can be greater than the sum of our individual parts.”

Intriguing. The only post on either site to suggest this … but perhaps telling that there was no detail on how it could be achieved. Maybe too much water under the bridge?

“Bear in mind from our perspective - any fans who came across to us did so for a reason and have cut emotional ties with UTD - and any new fans like myself, only know FC and want nothing to do with utd.

I completely understand the new fan’s point of view - where there are no emotional ties there is nothing to cut. Does anyone know, roughtly, how many United fans “came across”?

“Take ducks history away and they got nothing”

Think you might owe a few people a bit more credit than that

“Will we ever have the success that Utd had in the past? Who knows but actually I don't care! enjoy my Saturdays and Tuesdays chatting rubbish with my mates and enjoying football again”

I understand the sentiment about enjoying football again – chimes with some of what I put in my original post. But do you really not care about success?

The answer to my original question, I think, is this:
- A single Aylesbury club would, without question, be more powerful than two clubs
- But hardly anybody, at either club, actually wants there to only be one club – each feels that it has too much to lose
- Which demonstrates that emotion will always win out over pragmatism when it comes to football

Fair enough, I say. A lot to admire about both clubs. Let’s hope both thrive and there are lots of fun Boxing Day derbies in future.
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PostSubject: Re: Naive question   23.10.13 17:38

Once and Future Fan wrote:


“Probably not a popular answer but I want to see one club, think we can be greater than the sum of our individual parts.”

Intriguing. The only post on either site to suggest this … but perhaps telling that there was no detail on how it could be achieved.
A proper community club run democratically with a facility used not just by footie fans, bringing together of the youth sides, the ground used by schools, colleges, social club used by OAPs, Parent & baby. Possibilities are endless. Differences will be forgotten once all the good being done is seen.

I think this is what FC are striving for but how much stronger could it be with everyone pulling together?
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coach

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PostSubject: Re: Naive question   24.10.13 12:03

Agree there should be one club in aylesbury for the town to support but united made a mess of that..i have followed united when i was younger for a few matches but not anymore.Can't see there ever being a merge now.Too much has happened now between the two clubs.Ideally the council should provide land and make a community stadium with leisure facilities etc like thame but this won't happen.Who would they give it too? .New club..merge..united or fc.Me personally love being part of the club that my son plays for and that i coach for and now follow.Can walk to matches and have a beer and don't have to drive out of the county to enjoy....
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