Fylde v Ampthill, Pre-Season Squads
Ampthill’s Senior Squads travel to Lancashire this weekend for the final pre-season fixture of the summer.
Fylde RFC was formed in 1919 after the founders coin toss came down in favour of the oval ball as opposed to round ball code while the root of the club name is the Saxon word meaning ‘low lying ground between two Estuaries’.
Games were first played at Woodlands in 1920 and the merger with with Blackpool Old Boys in 1934 saw an increase in playing numbers and resources.
The second world war forced the temporary closure of the club as the Army used the facilities and many of the players. Fylde was re-formed in 1946 and acquired 13 acres renamed the Woodlands Memorial Ground in honour of those players and members who gave their lives during the conflict.
The ’50s saw the erection of a clubhouse & dressing rooms while an extension was opened in the ’60s.
The Club’s two most famous players are Malcolm Phillips and Bill Beaumont, both followed distinguished playing careers with England with IRB membership and senior positions within the RFU. Roger Uttley, Brian Ashton and Wade Dooley are some of the other well known names to have worn Fylde’s colours.
Recent seasons have seen Fylde move up and down between levels 2, 3 and 4 in the RFU league hierarchy while the opening of the current splendid clubhouse facility in 2005 secured an on going income stream leading to further improvements including a 3G all weather pitch.
Fylde returned to National 1 in 2011 where they thrived until last season where their young side struggled being relegated. Fylde remain uncompromisingly entertaining never deviating from playing an open, running style.
One of those clubs which Ampthill seek to emulate, Fylde maintain the difficult balance between a community club with a thriving mini & youth system and a professional outfit able to compete for players, regionally and nationally.
Ampthill’s 1stXV & ‘1881’ (2ndXV) squads will both have an unfamiliar look this week as Head Coach Paul Turner takes the chance to look at new combinations and gives opportunities to impress to a number of Academy graduates with Tom Clark & Liam Everitt making their debuts from the bench