Monday, 2 August 2010

Tow Law Town (England)

Tow Law is a small town in the A68 in County Durham whose most recent claim to fame was as the site where most of the North East's diseased cattle were disposed of down a disused pit on the edge of town during the 2001 foot and mouth outbreak. However the town's football club has brought a good deal of good times to the area to make them forget about the pong.

Formed in 1890 as simply Tow Law (because they weren't big enough to be considered a town at the time), they were founder members of the Auckland District League two years later. They currently play in the Northern League - the ninth tier in English football - which they first joined in 1894, and have stayed there pretty much ever since, winning the title in 1924, 1925 and 1995. But it is as a cup team that they are perhaps best remembered.

They had a great run in the 1967/68 FA Cup, where after beating Mansfield a superb 5-1 in the first round proper, they drew 1-1 with Shrewsbury in the second. The third round draw, held before the replay at Gay Meadow, caused much excitement in Tow Law as they drew Arsenal at home, but unfortunately Shrewsbury spoiled what would have been the biggest day in the town's history by hammering them 6-2 in the replay. But they did get to Wembley, for the 1998 FA Vase final, where after a battling game they lost 1-0 to Tiverton Town.

They play, as they always have at the 3000 capcity Ironworks Road ground, a pitch that has been graced by some footballing royalty. Leicester City star Steve Howard started his career there, but more impressively, the bemulleted England star Chris Waddle also began his immense footballing journey with The Lawyers back in 1978.

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