The Third Division (Northern Section) of the Football League 1921-1958

By Graham Williams (author of “The Code War”)

ISBN 978-1-905891-71-9

Price: £12

Mid-sized paperback, illustrated 

The Division Three (North) scarcely merits a mention in modern football histories. When it does it is only in context of the crises and casualties that befell an unfashionable provincial competition. Its name still lives on in the record books, and also thanks mainly to the many connotations it still carries. Unfortunately, many of those connotations are negative. The section has come to stand for a rather poverty stricken competition, populated largely by un-ambitious clubs that were reckoned to have settled for lower standards in all respects. Much of that ‘bad press’ was due to journalists at the time who were only too willing to belittle the section and describe the prospect of relegation as being to the “dreaded Third Division – that nightmare of the mighty”.

And yet, the Northern section’s history is more than just an ancient tale of crises and hard times. It is in fact in many ways a very modern tale of doughty survivors demonstrating real love and loyalty at the game’s roots. It is a tale of often-beleaguered directors investing in the game they loved to pass on clubs and stadia for future generations. It is a tale of supporters staying loyal to their clubs despite an almost permanent absence of success and money. It is also a tale of the pride felt by local communities when their team triumphed against the odds. The life and times of the Northern section also gives an insight into the economic realities and shifting sporting preferences, and allegiances, of times long past in the north of England.

The book is a mid-sized sized paperback book of 136 pages.  The price is £12.  Copies are available from sports booksellers and by post from Tony Brown.  If ordering by post, please send a cheque or postal order for £13.50 (which includes £1.50 for UK postage and packing) payable to Tony Brown, to 4 Adrian Close, Toton, Nottingham NG9 6FL.

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