Our Club
Clubhouse at Hartley Wintney Football Club

Hartley Wintney Football Club in Hampshire, England

Hartley Wintney is classified as a village, though a sizeable one these days, located close to the main town of Basingstoke in North Hampshire, within central southern England. The Football Club was founded in 1897, were founder members of the Home Counties League, and following promotion from the Combined Counties League Premier Division in 2016/17 and Southern League South East in 2017/18, the First Team now compete at Step 3 of the English football pyramid, in the Evo-Stik Southern League Premier South.

The Club, nicknamed 'The Row', is indebted to the volunteer workers and sponsors who have not only continued to keep the Club afloat but have shared in its recent outstanding success on and off the pitch.

We have our ground at The Memorial Playing Fields, Green Lane, Hartley Wintney, Hants RG27 8DL. The club now has four covered stands, two with seating, and a low level area to accommodate wheelchairs. The pitch is of course fully floodlit and there is a well-equipped, licensed clubhouse offering hot and cold drinks and snacks, as well as dual-zone satellite TV with large screen in the main area. During first team games, there is also an external catering facility.

CLUB CONSTITUTION (PDF file)


Club History

Shorter version
Last updated July 2018

Hartley Wintney Football Club was founded in 1897 and played in an area adjacent to the village's golf and cricket clubs. In 1953, the club moved to its present ground in Green Lane, known as 'The Memorial Ground'. A pavilion was erected and the team played in the Basingstoke League and, later, in the Aldershot League.

In 1973, Glynn Howell was appointed Manager. In his six year reign, the team won the Aldershot Senior League three times in succession, and the Aldershot Senior Cup.

After several seasons in the Aldershot Senior League, Hartley were admitted to the Combined Counties League, which replaced the Surrey Senior League. After the first couple of seasons and two changes of management, the club appointed Ian Bedford as Manager. Once again an influx of senior players brought Hartley success. Within his three years in management, they gained trophies including the League Title (1982-1983) and Runners Up (1981-1982), Aldershot Senior Cup Winners (1980-1981), and George Allen Cup Winners (1981-1982). They were also Runners Up in the League Cup (1982-1983) and Aldershot Senior Cup (1981-1982).

During this period a new Clubhouse, which is the club's present H.Q., was opened. David Willoughby, the then Secretary/Treasurer, and Bill Mitchell, the then club Chairman and now President, devoted exceptional hours in the embryo stages of this venture. Further investments around this time included floodlights, new changing rooms at a cost of over £100,000, and covered seating.

In 2007-08 under manager Mike Scott, the club gained promotion from Division One of the Combined Counties League, but 2008-09 began poorly and ended in relegation by a narrow margin. Under a new management team of Pete Gray and John Condon, the first team rallied, finishing 5th in CCL Div 1 in 2009-10, and 7th in 2010-11 under Manager Louis King.

A management team of ex-Basingstoke Town and Oxford United striker, Neville Roach, Assistant Mick Wollen and Coach Scott Tarr took charge for 2011-12 and it was a notable season, with the club achieving promotion back to the Combined Counties League Premier Division. Hartley also had a fine FA Cup run that took them to the Third Qualifying Round, but the euphoria of the cup run and promotion was dampened even before the champagne bubbles had burst, when the coaching staff and almost the entire squad left for Thatcham Town.

For the 2012-13 season, ex-Millwall defender, Dave Tuttle, was given the summer to prepare a new squad. Unfortunately, a string of poor results led to a second change in management in less than 4 months, with 24 year-old ex-Basingstoke Town and Hartley striker, Ben Dillon, given his first managerial position. Once again there was an almost total outflow of players and Ben, with assistants Jason Minton and Joe Lawler, set about rebuilding the squad, but by this time with Hartley well and truly set adrift at the bottom of the table. Their enthusiasm, belief and the introduction of a talented group of players quickly restored the spirit around the whole club. In what became known as the club's 'Great Escape', Hartley Wintney's place in the CCL Premier was secured against all the odds after a truly remarkable second half of the season.

Dillon further strengthened the squad, with Steve Saunders and Dan Brownlie brought in to the coaching setup alongside Jason and Joe. The 2013-14 season started well and there were wins in the FA Cup to setup a home tie in the 4th Qualifying Round for the first time in the club's history, losing out to an in-form Daventry Town in front of a crowd of over 1,000. The cup run took its toll on the league form but the club finished a creditable 7th in the CCL Premier Division.

A new Club crest was commissioned ahead of the 2013-14 season, with a design that is modern but holds true to the traditions of a village club founded over 100 years ago. Designed by Philippa Bell, the current crest incorporates several elements of historical significance. With the village recorded in the 13th century under the name of Hertleye Wynteneye, meaning "the clearing in the forest where the deer graze by Winta's island", the crest shows a tree and a stag, as well as the rose emblem of the Club's home county, Hampshire. The Club's nickname of 'The Row' is taken from 'Hartley Row', a former hamlet within Hartley Wintney. The nickname and the year in which the Club was founded are also incorporated in the crest.

In season 2014-15 the club consolidated its CCL Premier Division membership by finishing a comfortable 9th. Dillon stepped down at the end of the season and Dan Brownlie and Anthony Millerick were appointed as Joint First Team Managers for 2015-16, with Joe Lawler remaining part of the coaching setup, and Luke Tuffs coming in as First Team Coach, as well as continuing as the club's Youth Team Manager.

It was a very eventful 2015-16 season. After a memorable FA Cup win away at Merthyr Town in the Second Qualifying Round, Hartley battled back from 2-0 down to 2-2 away at Conference South Eastbourne Borough, only to be beaten by a goal struck deep into injury time. In the FA Vase, Hartley Wintney broke a longstanding club record by reaching the 5th Round Proper for the first time. In front of a sell-out 1,300 at Green Lane, eventual finalists Hereford proved too strong, but it had been a fantastic cup run.

The club topped the CCL Premier Division for most of the season and claimed the 2015-16 league title, finishing 10 points clear on 106 points, with a goal difference of +87 and having lost just four league games all season. Promotion, however, was denied due to ground grading issues.

Faced with attempting to achieve back-to-back title wins and put in place the substantial ground improvements that would allow progression, the 2016-17 season under co-managers Dan Brownlie and Anthony Millerick, and coach Luke Tuffs, was extraordinary. The Row topped the Combined Counties League Premier Division for the entire season, reached the semi-finals of the Hampshire Senior County Cup and the final of the Aldershot Senior Cup, and secured the required ground grading to allow the Row to take their place in the Southern League South, making it to Step 4 of the football pyramid for the first time. And to top off a wonderful 2016-17, the U18 youth team under Luke Tuffs won the Hampshire FA Youth Midweek Floodlit Cup against a strong Aldershot Town U18.

The team took life at Step 4 in their stride, helped by the consistency provided by an unchanged management team and settled squad, and the 2017-18 season was to prove even more remarkable than the previous campaign. The Row were within the top four for much of the season, never dropping below 8th.

The team set down a marker in the FA Cup, beating local rivals Basingstoke Town in a replay at Green Lane. Town later responded by signing Hartley's top goalscorer and club captain, Sam Argent. Argent's departure was a huge setback, but the management team responded by bringing in Rowan Vine, the charasmatic ex-professional. Vine seemingly did the impossible of filling the void left by Argent and restoring belief in both the team and the supporters; it was an inspired signing. With Vine in the side, Hartley Wintney embarked on their first FA Trophy campaign, which included wins against Gosport Borough and Farnborough FC before going out 0-2 in the First Round Proper against eventual finalists, Bromley FC.

Rowan Vine was tempted away, joining the management team at one of his former clubs, Gosport Borough, who were needing a near miracle to avoid relegation. Losing Rowan seemed a massive blow for the Row at a critical point in the season, but again the management team made an inspired signing. Nic Ciardini joined from Farnborough to partner Jake Baxter up front. Nic's hold-up play, strength and movement was instrumental in keeping the momentum going, along with the goals of season top scorer, Paul Hodges. A Play-Off place was secured and the Row won the semi-final against AFC Dunstable 2-0. Cambridge City had triumphed at Hayes & Yeading FC in the other semi. In front of a crowd of over 700 at Green Lane, a tense game was decided by a single goal scored by Nic Ciardini and so the Row clinched promotion and made it to Step 3; a truly outstanding achievement. The final season highlight was in lifting the Aldershot Senior Cup with a 4-1 win against Eversley & California FC.

Hartley Wintney FC has come a long way from a 'village side' in every sense, to today's 7 days a week modern football club, while its hard working committee has succeeded in retaining a village atmosphere. The football club has established a clear line of progression for young players with the U18 Youth setup, currently playing in the Allied Counties Youth League, a Reserve team playing in the Suburban League, and an A Team playing in the Aldershot & District Football League.

MEMBER OF:
THE EVO-STIK SOUTHERN LEAGUE SOUTH
THE SUBURBAN FOOTBALL LEAGUE
THE ALDERSHOT & DISTRICT FOOTBALL LEAGUE
THE ALLIED COUNTIES YOUTH FOOTBALL LEAGUE
AFFILIATED TO THE HAMPSHIRE FOOTBALL ASSOCIATION


Club History

Extended version
Last updated July 2018

Hartley Wintney Football Club was founded in 1897 and played in an area situated at Causeway Farm, not far from our present headquarters and adjacent to the village's golf and cricket clubs. From stories told by the older members, and from old club records, it appears the village side competed well against local opposition, despite the facilities not being up to today's standard, with only a horse trough or the pond to remove the heavy mud from a sub-standard pitch. In 1953, the club moved to its present ground in Green Lane, known as 'The Memorial Ground'. A pavilion was erected and the team played in the Basingstoke League and, later, in the Aldershot League.

In 1973, Glynn Howell was appointed Manager and an influx of players put Hartley Wintney FC firmly on the local football map. In his six year reign, the team won the Aldershot Senior League three times in succession and, on a night to remember, the Aldershot Senior Cup. In 1975, the facilities were once again improved, when a bar was built within the pavilion.

After several seasons in the ASL, Hartley were admitted to the Combined Counties League, the competition that replaced the Surrey Senior League. After the first couple of seasons and two changes of management, the club appointed Ian Bedford as Manager. Once again an influx of senior players brought Hartley success. Within his three years in management, they gained trophies including the League Title (1982-1983) and Runners Up (1981-1982), Aldershot Senior Cup Winners (1980-1981), and George Allen Cup Winners (1981-1982). They were also Runners Up in the League Cup (1982-1983) and Aldershot Senior Cup (1981-1982).

During this period a new Clubhouse, which is the club's present H.Q., was opened by ex-Chelsea star Peter Osgood. David Willoughby, the then Secretary/Treasurer, and Bill Mitchell, the then club Chairman and now President, devoted exceptional hours in the embryo stages of this venture - one of the bars is now named 'The David Willoughby Room'. Further investments in the ground facilities around this time included floodlights, new changing rooms at a cost of over £100,000, and covered seating.

In 2007-08 under manager Mike Scott, the club gained promotion from Division One of the Combined Counties League, but 2008-09 began poorly and ended in relegation by a narrow margin. Under a new management team of Pete Gray and John Condon, the first team rallied, finishing 5th in CCL Div 1 in 2009-10, and 7th in 2010-11 under manager Louis King after Pete Gray had stepped down.

A management team of ex-Basingstoke Town and Oxford United striker, Neville Roach, Assistant Mick Wollen and Coach Scott Tarr took charge for 2011-12 and it was a notable season, with the club achieving promotion back to the Combined Counties League Premier Division. Hartley also had a fine FA Cup run that took them to the Third Qualifying Round, with wins against Southern Premier League Bashley and Southern League Bideford AFC. The Row eventually went out after a brave performance at then Conference South near neighbours Basingstoke Town. But the euphoria of the cup run and promotion was dampened even before the champagne bubbles had burst, when the coaching staff and almost the entire squad departed to try their luck with Thatcham Town.

For the 2012-13 season, ex-Millwall player and one-time interim Millwall manager, Dave Tuttle, had the summer break to prepare a new squad competitive enough for the CCL Premier. Unfortunately, a string of poor results led to a second change in management in less than 4 months, with 24 year-old ex-Basingstoke Town and Hartley striker, Ben Dillon, given his first managerial position. Once again there was an almost total outflow of players from Tuttle's squad, and Ben, with assistants Jason Minton and Joe Lawler, set about rebuilding the squad, but by this time with Hartley well and truly set adrift at the bottom of the table. It was a baptism of fire for the young manager, but his enthusiasm, belief and the introduction of a talented group of new players quickly restored the spirit around the whole club. In what became known as the club's 'Great Escape', Hartley Wintney's place in the CCL Premier was secured against all the odds after a truly remarkable second half of the season.

With the benefit of a full pre-season to prepare, Ben Dillon further strengthened the squad, with Steve Saunders and Dan Brownlie brought in to the coaching setup alongside Jason and Joe. The 2013-14 season started well and there were wins in the FA Cup away to Eastbourne Town and very memorably in a replay at Clevedon Town - where Hartley came back from 2-0 and 3-1 down to win 4-3 in injury time - setting up a home tie in the 4th Qualifying Round for the first time in the club's history, eventually losing out to an in-form Daventry Town in front of a crowd of over 1,000. The cup run took its toll on the league form but the club finished a creditable 7th in the CCL Premier Division.

A new Club crest was commissioned ahead of the 2013-14 season, with a design that is modern but holds true to the traditions of a village club founded over 100 years ago. Designed by Philippa Bell, the current crest incorporates several elements of historical significance. With the village recorded in the 13th century under the name of Hertleye Wynteneye, meaning "the clearing in the forest where the deer graze by Winta's island", the crest shows a tree and a stag, as well as the rose emblem of the Club's home county, Hampshire. The Club's nickname of 'The Row' is taken from 'Hartley Row', a former hamlet within Hartley Wintney. The nickname and the year in which the Club was founded are also incorporated in the crest.

There were fewer cup highlights in season 2014-15 but the club consolidated its CCL Premier Division membership by finishing a comfortable 9th. Ben Dillon took the decision to step down at the end of the season. Dan Brownlie and Anthony Millerick were appointed as Joint First Team Managers for 2015-16, with Joe Lawler remaining part of the coaching setup and Luke Tuffs coming in as First Team Coach, as well as continuing as the club's Youth Team Manager.

It was to be a very eventful 2015-16 season. After a memorable 1-0 win away at Southern League Merthyr Town in the Second Qualifying Round of the FA Cup, Hartley were faced with an away tie at Conference South Eastbourne Borough. Coming from 2-0 down, Hartley battled back to 2-2 and appeared to have earned a deserved replay until the hosts struck deep into injury time. In the FA Vase, Hartley Wintney broke a longstanding club record by reaching the 5th Round Proper for the first time. A hard fought 3-1 win at home to Bradford Town in the previous round had setup a home tie against cup favourites Hereford FC. In front of a sell-out 1,300 at Green Lane, eventual finalists Hereford proved too strong, but it had been a fantastic cup run.

Despite the cup commitments, the club topped the CCL Premier Division for most of the season and claimed the 2015-16 league title, finishing 10 points clear on 106 points, with a goal difference of +87 and having lost just four league games all season. Club captain, Sam Argent, swept most of the end of season awards but the entire squad deserved huge praise. Promotion, however, was denied due to ground grading issues. Runners-up, Ashford Town, took the place on the last day of the season, but only after Hartley Wintney put in one of their best performances to defeat promotion-seeking Camberley Town and, as a consequence, hand Ashford promotion.

Faced with huge challenges on and off the pitch - to achieve back-to-back title wins and put in place the substantial ground improvements that would allow progression - the 2016-17 season under co-managers Dan Brownlie and Anthony Millerick, and coach Luke Tuffs, was extraordinary. The Row topped the Combined Counties League Premier Division for the entire season, reached the semi-finals of the Hampshire Senior County Cup and the final of the Aldershot Senior Cup, and secured the required ground grading to allow the Row to take their place in the Southern League South, East division, making it to Step 4 of the English football pyramid for the first time. And to top off a wonderful 2016-17, our U18 youth team under Luke Tuffs won the Hampshire FA Youth Midweek Floodlit Cup, winning on penalties against a strong Aldershot Town U18.

Life in Step 4 seemed a daunting prospect, at least to some of the club's dedicated supporters, but the team took it in their stride, helped by the consistency provided by an unchanged management team and, initially, substantially the same squad that had won promotion. Even so, it's doubtful anyone expected the club to achieve back-to-back promotions. The 2017-18 season was to prove even more remarkable than the previous campaign. The pace and strength of the opposition was clearly a step up, but early fears that the skilful but relatively lightweight Hartley Wintney squad would be outmuscled showed in only a handful of matches. The Row were within the top four for much of the season, never dropping below 8th.

The team set down a marker in the FA Cup, beating local rivals Basingstoke Town in a replay at Green Lane. Town later responded by signing Hartley's top goalscorer and club captain, Sam Argent; they had already taken Shane Hollamby from the Row in the closed season. Argent's departure was a huge setback, but the management team responded by bringing in Rowan Vine, the charasmatic ex-professional. Vine seemingly did the impossible of filling the void left by Argent and restoring belief in both the team and the supporters; it was an inspired signing. With Vine in the side, Hartley Wintney embarked on their first FA Trophy campaign, which included notable wins against Gosport Borough and Farnborough FC before going out 0-2 in the First Round Proper against eventual finalists, Conference National side Bromley FC.

Apart from the odd blip, league form remained strong. Rowan Vine was tempted away, joining the management team at one of his former clubs, Gosport Borough, who were needing a near miracle to avoid relegation - a near miracle they went on to achieve! Losing Rowan, another hugely influential player, seemed a massive blow for the Row at a critical point in the season, but again the management team made an inspired signing. Nic Ciardini joined from Farnborough to partner Jake Baxter up front. Nic's hold-up play, strength and movement was instrumental in keeping the momentum going, along with the goals of season top scorer, Paul Hodges. A Play-Off place was comfortably secured and the 4th place finish meant a home-tie in the semi-final against AFC Dunstable, which the Row deservedly won 2-0. Cambridge City had pulled off an excellent result at 3rd placed Hayes & Yeading FC, but the Row's higher league finishing position again importantly secured a home tie in the Play-Off Final. In front of a crowd of over 700, a tense game was decided by a single goal, made by Dean Stow's free-kick and Jack Ball's looping header and finished by Nic Ciardini. The Row had clinched promotion and made it to Step 3, a truly outstanding achievement.

There was one last 2017-18 season highlight as the Row secured a 4-1 win against Eversley & California FC to claim the Aldershot Senior Cup, the trophy they had missed out on in the previous season's final.

Hartley Wintney FC has come a long way from a 'village side' in every sense, to today's 7 days a week modern football club, while its hard working committee has succeeded in retaining a village atmosphere. As with so many clubs at our level, the Club is indebted to its volunteer workers. Under longstanding Club Chairman, Luke Mullen, the football club has established a clear line of progression for young players with the U18 Youth setup, currently playing in the Allied Counties Youth League, a Reserve team playing in the Suburban League, and an A Team playing in the Aldershot & District Football League.

MEMBER OF:
THE EVO-STIK SOUTHERN LEAGUE SOUTH
THE SUBURBAN FOOTBALL LEAGUE
THE ALDERSHOT & DISTRICT FOOTBALL LEAGUE
THE ALLIED COUNTIES YOUTH FOOTBALL LEAGUE
AFFILIATED TO THE HAMPSHIRE FOOTBALL ASSOCIATION


Visiting Us

Hartley Wintney FC have their ground at The Memorial Fields, Green Lane, Hartley Wintney, Hants RG27 8DL. The club has covered standing and seating, with an area to accommodate wheelchairs. The pitch is fully floodlit and there is a well-equipped, licensed clubhouse offering hot and cold drinks and snacks on match days, as well as offering the facilities to host varied events including wedding receptions, birthday parties and social or business meetings. During first team games, there is also an external catering facility.

DIRECTIONS - refer also to the map here

FROM THE A30
On entering Hartley Wintney via the A30, take the turn at the mini roundabout signposted A323 Fleet. Take the 1st right turn, Green Lane, which has St John's Church on the corner. Continue down Green Lane for about 800 metres and turn right into the car park at the second entry slip road (the parking area operates a one-way system and the first slip road you'll pass is the exit). This car park has a shared access with Greenfields School.

FROM FLEET DIRECTION
Turn left at St John's Church if coming down the A323 from Fleet.

CONTACTING US
Please use the contact form wherever possible. During times when the Clubhouse is open, the club may be contacted by phone on 01252 843586.

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