HomeFeaturedLocal SportOn The Road with The Blues - Gresley Rovers

On The Road with The Blues – Gresley Rovers

Formed: 1882. This is the date of formation for the original club that was liquidated in 2009 and re-formed as Gresley immediately after. The new club adopted the former name in July 2020

Known As
The Moatmen. This is because of the name of their ground.

Leagues

Leicestershire 1890-91 (1st) – 1891 League abandoned
Burton Junior 1892-95 Champions – 1895
Derbyshire Senior 1895-97 Best – 3rd (1896)
Burton and District 1897-98, 1909-10 Best – 2nd (1898)
Leicestershire Senior 1898-1901, 1908-09, 1910-12, 1935-49 Champions – 1901 Champions – Central Div – 2 times. More recently in 1948
Nottinghamshire and District 1901-02 Best – 4th (1902)
Derby and District 1902-03 Champions – 1903
Midland 1903-06 Best – 13th (1904)
Central Alliance 1912-25, 1949-53, 1959-67 Champions – 1965
Birmingham Combination/West Midlands Regional 1925-33, 1953-54, 1975- Champions – 2 times. More recently in 1992
Central Combination 1933-35 Best – 13th (1935)
Birmingham and District 1954-59 Best – 19th (1958)
East Midlands Regional 1967-75 Champions – 2 times. More recently in 1970
Southern 1992-2004 Champions – 1997
Northern Premier 2004-09, 2012-19 Best – 5th Div 1 (2006) 5th – Div 1S (2015)
East Midlands Counties 2009-11 Champions – 2011
Midland Alliance 2011-12 Champions – 2012
Midland 2019-21 No Season Completed
United Counties 2021 to Date No completed season


FA Cup

First Appearance 1895 1Q Clay Cross Town 5-1
Best 1930 1 York City 1-3
1994 1 Crewe Alexandra 1-7


FA Trophy

First Appearance 1969 1Q Ilkeston Town 0-1
Best 1996 QF Macclesfield Town 0-2


FA Vase

First Appearance 1974 1 Bridgnorth Town 2-0
Best 1991 FR Guiseley 1-3


Other Cups

Bass Charity Vase 7 times – most recently in 1989
Millennium Cup 2000
West Midlands League Cup 1989
Derbyshire Senior Cup 8 times – most recently in 2005
Central Alliance Cup 1953
Leicestershire Senior Cup 2 times – more recently in 1947
Coalville Charity Cup 2 times – more recently in 1947


Recent Seasons

Season League Position FA Cup FA Trophy FA Vase
2015/16 NPL-15 16th PREr 1Q
2016/17 NPL-15 18th 2Qr 1Q
2017/18 NPL-15 17th PRE PRE
2018/19 NPL-1E 20th PRE PRE Relegated
2019/20 MID-R (19th) PRE 1
2020/21 MID-P 7th PRE 1 Transferred
2021/22 UCL-PN


Other Cups

Bass Charity Vase 7 times – most recently in 1989
Millennium Cup 2000
West Midlands League Cup 1989
Derbyshire Senior Cup 8 times – most recently in 2005
Central Alliance Cup 1953
Leicestershire Senior Cup 2 times – more recently in 1947
Coalville Charity Cup 2 times – more recently in 1947


Recent Head To Heads

League

Season Grove Home Away Leek Home Away Castle Home Away
2015-16 3-1 0-2 3-0 1-0 2-0 2-0
2016-17 5-1 1-2 5-1 1-1 3-0 1-0
2017-18 2-2 3-0 0-1 3-1 2-1 1-1

Cup
2018-19 Newcastle FATPRE A 2-1
2020-21 Hanley FACPRE H 5-1
Congleton FAV1 H 5-0

Ground

The Moat Ground, Moat Street, Church Gresley, Swadlincote, DE11 9RE

Gresley have played at the Moat Ground since 1909. At that time the northern end was waste ground with a large mound of rubble after clay extraction. When it rained the rubble resembled a castle surrounded by a moat which possibly gives the ground its name. The southern end was a cricket ground for a local pottery firm. Some cover was quickly provided including a stand that used old chapel pews for bench seating and the cricket pavilion and canteen were pressed into service. Covered terracing was provided in the 1920s but this was removed during the Second World War before being rebuilt in the 1950s. The dressing rooms were opened in September 1930 with the Boot Inn being used up to that date while another stand was provided opposite the main stand with seating acquired from Lancaster City. The original stand was replaced in 1990 with a long, low-roofed construction after the original floodlights had been bought from Burton Rugby Club in 1985. There is a small car park adjacent.

Distance from Harrison Park 41.5 miles

Admission Adults £7.50 Over 60s £5 Under 16s £1 (accompanied by adult)
Programme £2

A social club and kitchen serving hot and cold food and drink are located inside the ground.
Supporters are urged to visit the Moat as soon as you can as plans to move to a new ground are imminent.

Other Grounds

Mushroom Lane, Albert Village (1882-95) This was shared with Mushroom Lane Cricket Club. At the time the club’s headquarters were in the Albert Inn where players may have also changed but it is more likely that they used the cricket pavilion. There is now no trace of the ground as it was obliterated through coal and clay workings.

Church Street (1895-1909) Although enclosed the ground had no amenities and the players changed at the Boot Inn. The club was forced to move a few hundred yards to their present ground when the owner Mrs Woodward decided to sell for development and the ground disappeared without trace

The Season So Far

Gresley defeated Bewdley 3-0 to reach the Preliminary Round after an opening-day defeat to Heanor. This was followed by a 3-0 win over Pinchbeck United and a draw at Newark. Danny Munday has hit the back of the net five times including a hat-trick against Bewdley

Time to Spare?

– The Church of Saint George and Saint Mary still has traces of its twelfth-century origins
– Maurice Lea Park is dedicated to the local nineteen-year old who lost his life in France in the First World War
– Swadlincote Woodland Forest Park has a number of viewpoints across the town
– Sharpe’s Pottery Museum is dedicated to the town’s ceramic industry
– There is a 50s American diner reputed to be the largest in the country

Dave Stringer
Sports Reporter and Theatre Critic

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