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Help identifying pre-1964 National Sunday Cup competitions

London Harrier
Chelsea Transfer Target

Apr 12, 2018, 2:16 PM

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Views: 1462
Help identifying pre-1964 National Sunday Cup competitions or Reply Privately

I read John Treleven’s excellent background piece on the FA Sunday Cup.


As I understand it, the Sunday Cup began in 1964-65. So I’m intrigued by the following newspaper articles:

Portsmouth Evening News - Monday 28 February 1955: Three Sunday Football League teams from Hampshire, one representing Portsmouth, will among those competing for a national Sunday Cup next season. The competition, which will be on a regional basis, will be organized by the national council of the Sunday Football League.

Portsmouth Evening News - Saturday 19 November 1955: The City of Portsmouth Sunday F.A. team play Hackney and Leyton in the National Sunday Football Cup competition in London tomorrow.

Daily Herald - Saturday 10 November 1956: Essex Combination and Edmonton District, Southern favourites for the National Sunday Football Cup (sponsored by the Daily Herald) meet In the second round tomorrow at The Arena, Church Elm-lane, Dagenham


Coventry Evening Telegraph – Saturday 25 June 1960: “A national Sunday Cup competition is expected to be sanctioned at the 10th annual meeting of the Sunday FA at Peterborough. This meeting will also discuss whether or not to accept the offered affiliation to the FA

Sports Argus – Saturday December 1960: “Aston Rangers, representing the Festival League, crushed Budapest, an all-Hungarian team based in Mansfield by 8-1 in the first round of the new national Sunday cup competition. Article attached.

Sports Argus – Saturday 02 March 1962: “Another tough test for Sunday Alliance side Erdington Liberals in the National Sunday Cup. They travel to Newcastle on March 11 to meet Blue Bell, a middle of the table North East League team. I think this is the farthest any team from Birmingham has travelled for competitive football.” Article attached.

Which begs the questions, what “national Sunday cup(s)” are being referred to here?
Attachments: Erdington Liberals.JPG (18.7 KB)
  Aston Rangers.JPG (75.0 KB)

Ronald Price
Youth Team Star

Jul 31, 2019, 5:00 PM

Posts: 374
Location: Lincoln

Views: 523
Re: [London Harrier] Help identifying pre-1964 National Sunday Cup competitions or Reply Privately

The "Sunday FA" was formed in 1927 - if memory serves by two leagues Edmonton and Tottenham. Sunday football was formally 'banned' by the Saturday FA in 1908 (Apart from religion it was also tied to an objection to 'public house teams'.

There were several leagues around London including a Tidal Basin League which wanted to provide football for those working in the docks on Saturdays.

I am sure it had a national impact - the Birmingham FA centenary history notes several leagues which originated on Sundays.

After WWII Sunday FA leagues 'merged' but my research suggests this was necessary because of the shortage of pitches. As noted even after the Saturday FA introduced its club basis several Sunday teams remained loyal to the Sunday FA.

It is a very wide subject, perhaps one worthy of the cumulative research that history contributors to NLM might be challenged.

As an aside the Saturday FA had similar problems with pre WW1 midweek competitions which were often 'company-based'.

Ron Price