Formed in 1968, TFFC has spent forty-one consecutive seasons competing in the Maccabi GB
Southern Football League, a feat matched by no other current M(S)FL (now renamed MGBSFL due to sponsorship by Maccabi GB) or Masters team.
The strength of this Club has always been our management team. I look after the behind-the-scenes administration side, whilst six others will run the playing side involving our three teams to ensure that they are in good reliable hands. This set-up allows our team managers to concentrate on the footballing aspect, without becoming embroiled in major admin matters such as membership, registration, pitches, fixtures or referees, etc. It is a successful tried and tested format which has served the Club well and is testimony to our continued existance for 48 years now.
The 2017/18 season will be Temple Fortune’s 42nd campaign in the Maccabi (Southern) Football League and 19th in the Maccabi Masters Football League, an organisation this Club helped form in 1999. We will be running two teams in the MGBSFL and another in the the MMFL. When it comes to continuous participation since 1976, the TFFC is currently the longest running club in Maccabi football, an achievement of longevity of which I am hugely proud.
The Club’s sound administrational structure has been instrumental in many players staying around for numerous seasons. 61 players have now passed one hundred appearances, of which 28 have doubled that figure over the years. My brother Peter, who was one of the Club’s co-founders, has 737 appearances for Temple Fortune, an incredible milestone of commitment and dedication, whilst a total of six others have surpassed an equally impressive 400 appearances, with Jeremy Fess achieving 550 games a couple of seasons ago. So we must be doing something right in terms of organisation and providing enjoyment even though the silverware isn’t always forthcoming! Having said that, season 2010/11 saw Temple Fortune’s First Team win the M(S)FL Second Division championship exactly 25 years after we last did it in 1985/86. A lot of hard work by all concerned gave us some richly deserved success after many bleak years without.
And last season, following a few difficult campaigns of struggle, the First Team completed a very enjoyable season by finishing runners-up in the MGBSFL Second Division, gaining a richly deserved promotion for the first time in a few years. Simon Linden, who has been with the Club for just over a year, managed a new squad to success, breaking a few Club records along the way.
The Club has a full set of Rules & Regulations and the relatively new Code of Conduct which we expect our members to observe throughout the season whilst representing Temple Fortune. Discipline is important at this Club and the Code of Conduct and List of Fines and Suspensions are two of the documents received by every member joining us in order to make it very clear what happens if someone steps out of line.
This Club is buzzing with excitement for the season ahead and once again we are hopeful that Temple Fortune will have a successful campaign. But whether or not it will be a good season in terms of results, we trust the Club will remain friendly and enjoyable to existing players and newcomers alike. Because, overall, these are the fundamental reasons why we compete in Sunday league football. In an ideal world, a healthy mixture of enjoyment and success will give us an enjoyable 2017/18 season over the coming months fingers crossed!
The significance of entering our 42nd season in Maccabi football has not been lost on anyone associated with the Club. No other club in the MGBSFL has survived through this lengthy period of time under the same club name for example, Maccabi London Lions, the biggest Maccabi club in the country, spent a couple of years in non-Jewish football about 20 or so years ago. Another long-running club, Brixton Old Boys, changed their name twice since Temple Fortune first entered the League in 1976/77 before folding last season. We’ve seen over 175 clubs come and go over the past 41 seasons yet TFFC trundles on and on!
With promotion of the First Team guaranteed in April 2017 we decided to go ahead with reforming the Second Team after an absence of four years. I see this as a positive step towards the progression of this Club; after several years of struggle I believe we are going in the right direction and hopefully we will have two competitive MGBSFL teams next season. Simon has been joined on the First Team management team by ‘old hand’ Lee Fegan, whilst Darren Zitren will be running the Second Team. I know that both Simon and Darren will be working hard to recruit new players to strengthen the First Team and also the new Second Team.
Should you have any queries or require further information, please do not hesitate to contact me by email on firstname.lastname@example.org. In the meantime, please look around the Club website which is very comprehensive and should interest anyone interested in football as a whole, let alone TFFC.
Wishing you plenty of ‘good fortune’ for the 2017/18 season, so to speak!
1st June 2017
Temple Fortune FC Chairman Nigel Kyte (standing far right) lines up with the championship-winning First Team at The Hive in March 2011.