FC Humber United return to action on Monday 3rd January at the FPH Stadium, Selby as we host rivals North Ferriby. Following the postponement of our festive fixture against Selby Town we are looking to get back into action and hopefully complete a full 90 minute game this time around.
Although there’s evidence that football had been played within the village since the turn of the century, it’s not until after the great war we can establish for certain that North Ferriby Football Club had been formed.
On April 28, 1923 North Ferriby hosted the final of the South Howdenshire Cup between Melton and Willerby. One can start to imagine the immense pride of the clubs committee and volunteers as they busily prepared their pitch on the outskirts of the village.
Fast forward to January 2020 and Ferriby stalwarts are again filled with pride as news was broken their Dransfield Stadium has been nominated to host an England U18 International against Scotland on Thursday, April 9.
No one’s certain what happened to North Ferriby FC during the early 1930’s, but in 1934 the second element of this incredible trilogy began with the formation of North Ferriby United, a village club extraordinaire.
In their very first season, NFU were runners up in the East Riding Church League Division One, but also went on to win the League Cup in that inaugural season. Astonishingly, by the time of its demise in March 2019, NFU had achieved no less than 64 major honors, including eight promotions and appearances in both National Stadiums.
The first Wembley visit was in the 1997 FA Vase Final when the team went down to a strong Whitby Town side in the shadow of those famous white towers, but that disappointment was put firmly behind supporters when in 2015 North Ferriby completed the giant killing of giant killings by overcoming “full time” Wrexham in the final of the FA Trophy beneath the iconic arc of the new Wembley Stadium.
Between 1934 and 1954 football was played on several sites within the village. Humber Road, Corby Park and Pickerings Field are all listed locations. Significantly, in 1954 Sir Arthur Atkinson stated at the opening ceremony that it was very rare for a Village to have “such splendid facilities”. The clubs then committee and volunteers had acquired unwanted bricks from a disused building and constructed in their own time and at their own expense a brick pavilion. So good was the quality of construction, the building is still in situ and used by the cricket club today.
But the urge to progress was like a baton being passed on and on and by 1969 the need to move again had been determined after club officials decided the best way forward lay within the wider bigger world of the then Yorkshire League. To meet requirements, a new pitch was needed and so eyes turned to a veritable wilderness that lay between the playing field and the railway. An area of land originally designated for allotments after the Second World War, but subsequently laid unused.
The local Parish Council were approached and the outcome was the granting of a lease, the proceeds of which would support the Parish’s obligations for maintenance of the playing fields. A winwin all round and an enduring arrangement still in existence today, albeit at a significantly higher contributory level from the football club.
The jungle was levelled, the access track (now Grange Lane) was improved, a car park dug-out and covered. Two condemned pre-fabs were acquired from Beverley Borough Council and daily sweepings of cement were taken from Earls Cement. Finally, posts and rails were bought for £40 from Hull Brunswick and the foundations of the now Dransfield Stadium had begun. Unfortunately, the club couldn’t afford to connect drains to the main sewer that lay 400 meters away under Church Road, so a cesspit was dug inside the ground under the entrance car park. When the day came for the big opening a large crowd gathered to witness arrival of the first Tetley delivery. The dray wagon swept majestically into the ground and immediately collapsed into the cesspit where it remained for several days until a JCB eventually pulled it out. It has been said many times, there’s an easy way, a hard way and then the Ferriby way.
Following a progressive building programme lasting over 20 years between 1994 and 2014, all necessary to keep pace with ground requirements associated to progress on the pitch, the now Dransfield Stadium has developed beyond comprehension to those early days. But not before the third and final part of this trilogy would emerge.
In March 2019 the unthinkable happened. After a three year decline in fortunes, two relegations and irresponsible financial management, North Ferriby United was wound up in the Hull courts. Gone forever. Or so was thought. On 1 April 2019, yes April Fools Day, North Ferriby Football Club rose from the ashes like a phoenix. Within six short months 18 teams had been formed. Men, women and nearly 200 children all brought together to once again ensure the great Ferriby tradition continues.
Tale of The Tape
When it comes to previous meetings between FC Humber United and North Ferriby, the two sides have only met in competitive action on three occasions. Through an albeit short tenure as a football club, the now FC Humber United have met North Ferriby on three previous occasions and as the record stands, FC Humber have recorded no victories and zero draws whilst the North Ferriby have won all three of the previous meetings between the two.
From the three previous fixtures FC Humber and North Ferriby have met in competitive action, there have been nine goals between the two; one from FC Humber and eight from North Ferriby. The last time these two met was in the opening month of the current season, meeting on the 24th August 2021; the tie ended in a 0-2 defeat for FC Humber. A performance of similar calibre wouldn’t be sniffed at heading into the next round of fixtures, with NCEL1 safety the key.
Towards the end of the opening month of the 2021-22 NCEL1 season, Humber visited the North Ferriby in what proved an entertaining game of football. With the scores level at the break and Humber soaking up all the Ferriby pressure whilst looking to strike on the counter-attack it was a 5 minute lapse in concentration midway through the second half that gave Ferriby a 2-0 win on the night.