The 1990s

The 1980s

The decade of the demise. Ferryhill were mired in financial problems toward the end of the decade, ending in the famous club going out of business. They lost their ground, their heart and their existence, at a time when football was booming. Sadly, little money trickled down from the Premier League and grass roots clubs could only watch enviously.

1990-91  8th

Programme of the FA Trophy 2nd Qualifying Round game versus Emley
Programme of the FA Trophy 2nd Qualifying Round game versus Emley (0-0)

This was quite a respectable season, with a finish of 8th. 16 wins gained 54 points, but Ferryhill had a 3 point penalty. It didn’t affect the finishing position however.

The FA Trophy game against Emley on 20th October 1990 finished level at 0-0. Unfortunately, Athletic lost the replay 1-4.

Ferryhill also reached the 1st qualifying round of the FA Cup before losing narrowly to South Bank in a replay.

1991-92  16th

A shocking quality photograph from Paul Robinson’s book ‘The Hill’ reveals The Athletic squad for 1991-92 to be

Mason, Moffat, Peachy, Gilham, Redhead, Richardson, Seymour, Cowell, Barrass, Parnaby, Simpson, Gorman and Richardson.

If I get a better copy i’ll post it here, but until then….!

10 wins and 10 draws in their 38 league games resulted in 40 points. This points total was tied with three other clubs.

1992-93  17th

Programme from the FA Cup Preliminary Round, August 29th 1992
Programme from the FA Cup Preliminary Round, August 29th 1992

Another poor season. Athletic finished 17th of 20.

Ferryhill met up with their local rivals Spennymoor United early in the season in the FA Cup Preliminary Round. Despite having a man sent off (Seymour) and being 2-1 down, Spennymoor came back to win 3-2.

Scorers were Sinclair and Soppitt for Ferryhill. Veart, Hendry and Gorman hit the net for ‘Moors.

Athletic bowed out of the FA Trophy in embarrassing fashion, losing 10-2 at Stockton in Qualifying Round 2.

1993-94  13th

Ferryhill v Guisborough Town 1993-94 Season

Irishman Terry Cochrane, formerly of Middlesbrough,  turned out for Ferryhill in the 1993-94 season. He played in most of Northern Ireland’s World Cup Qualifying games in 1982. He’d finished his career in the Northern League from 1987, appearing for Billingham Synthonia, Marske United, Billingham Town and South Bank before coming to the Athletic.

By Easter 1994, dark forboding clouds were forming over Darlington Road. Players were being paid £100 per week, an unsustainable figure. It is reckoned by Paul Robinson that they owed more than £100,000 to the former Vaux Brewery.

1994-95  17th

Ferryhill finished 4th bottom. There were 9 victories in the total of 30 points, but included a 3 point deduction. Hebburn, Seaham Red Star, Eppleton CW, Northallerton and Prudhoe Town received the same punishment.

1995-96  20th

Relegated to Northern League Division 2.

Ferryhill moved out of their ground at Darlington Road, which was now derelict and vandalised. They agreed to a ground-share arrangement with Brandon United.

Athletic went the entire season without winning a single league game. They managed 5 draws, but conceded 146 goals in 38 games, scoring just 27.

At the 1996 Northern League annual meeting, Ferryhill survived an expulsion vote by 19-18. Worse followed in 1996-97.

1996-97  19th

In Division 2, Ferryhill managed a single victory (Esh Winning), but shipped 177 goals in only 36 games. This time they scored only 16. Six teams got into double figures against Ferryhill. The next meeting of the league committee reached a unanimous decision.

Membership of the Northern League was suspended.



Ferryhill Athletic joined the Wearside League, where they played until the club folded completely in the 2005-06 season.

Ferryhill Athletic Badge

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