Junior Team Regular
Jul 27, 2019, 9:40 PM
Team(s): Luton Town
I think the Conference / National League is a bit of a nightmare tbh. I don't think there is a clear answer since the competition's name has been filtered out / obscured too much by the sponsor name.
Re: [Statto1] Official titles - Step 1-4 from 2001-2 season to date...
When there was just the one division, things were easy. It was the Conference (and of course the Alliance Premier going further back). There would be the sponsor name as well but since you and I are not interested in that, in 2003/04 the league would be called 'Conference' as you say. After that things get increasingly ambiguous (especially when the league itself was more interested in its name after sponsorship).
Thereafter some people (and those who edit Wikipedia), seem to look at the sponsor name of the league to derive its title.
So, from 2004/05 to 2006/07, the top league was called the Nationwide Conference National. So the non-sponsor name was obviously Conference National.
From 2007/08 to 2012/13, it was the Blue Square Premier then Blue Square Bet Premier. I have seen some people argue that the league name itself did not change at this time. However, the addition of the word 'Premier' in the sponsor title caused most to then consider the league to be Conference Premier.
In 2013/14, it had one year as the Skrill Premier which likewise maps to Conference Premier.
However in 2014/15 it was called the Vanarama Conference, i.e. with no Premier in the title. So this non-sponsorship name could be logically assumed to be just Conference. So I don't think it fair to say this year's title is Conference Premier.
From 2015/16 onwards, the top league is clearly National League.
I don't think you will find any clear answer to this as those in charge of this league are clearly not bothered about maintaining a simple identity for the league, rather just want the cash (I won't even go into the Bostik and Evostik farce!). So one alternative which I quite like is just to call the top league simply 'Conference', and the lower leagues 'Conference North' and 'Conference South'. This then continues nicely into today with 'National League', 'National League North' and 'National League South'.
At least I am not alone in searching for a definite answer to this puzzle, I just don't think we are going to find one (unless you know an official for the league who might sense have THE correct solution).
(This post was edited by Statto1 on Jul 27, 2019, 9:43 PM)