Highridge United FC - Club History
Highridge United Football Club was formed in 1957 and played their first ever season of home fixtures at nearby Whitchurch. They later moved to Lakemead Grove, Highridge to their new Clubhouse lovingly called "The Hut".
The Club progressed through the Bristol & District League Divisions, eventually winning promotion in 1978-79 to the Avon Premier Combination, later to be renamed the Bristol Premier Combination.
By the 90's the Club was running four senior adult sides, three being in the Bristol & District League. It was also in the early 90's that the Club started a youth side in the Midsomer Norton League run by Paul Brimble, which was followed up two years later by Steve Rush, Phil Sposito & (for a short time) Roy Vincent. Since that very first side, Highridge were running three youth teams at different age groups (usually being two years apart).
The 1997-98 season was a particularly successful year when the 1st XI was promoted to the Gloucestershire County League for the first time in their history after achieving the 'double' of the Bristol Premier Combination League and Cup. The Reserve team were also promoted from the Bristol & District Senior Division to the Bristol Premier Combination Division 1.
Highridge finished Runners Up in their first season in The Gloucestershire County League in 1998-99. The Club expanded so quickly that in December 1998 it moved into the nearby Golden Cockerel Public House, and after several unsuccessful attempts in acquiring the purchase of the building out right, it was decided in the best interest of the club that they would relocate back into the Old Clubhouse, which was and still is called "THE HUT".
Season 1999-2000 was very successful especially as the 1st XI won the Gloucestershire County League title in only their second attempt. The Reserves were Runners Up in both the League and League Cup. The 3rd team (nicknamed the Vikings) became Runners Up in their League and G.F.A Junior Cup, and the 4th team also picking up the Runners Up spot in their Division too.
After a long 2000-01 season the 1st XI finished Runners Up in the Gloucestershire County League for the second time in three years, while the Reserves won the Bristol Premier Combination League title which they believe is the first time a 2nd XI has ever won it.
Season 2001-02 saw Roger Coke take over the First Team and with a huge change of players finished third on goal difference.
Season 2002-03 with the First Team managed by Roger Coke could only finish a lowly 6th. The Reserves meanwhile, were Runners Up in the Bristol Premier Cup Final at Axa FC. A sad day for the club as the Vikings under Paul Brimble got relegated to Division 1 in the Bristol & District League, which was the first time ever in Highridge history a side had been relegated. They also lost ‘El Presidente’ Colin Veale a life long supporter and member of Highridge Utd FC and was a huge loss, but will always be fondly remembered at this club.
Season 2003-04 ended with the First Team finishing fifth in The Gloucestershire County League. It could so easily have been a lot better if they were more consistent but that’s the great mystery of football. The Reserves stayed in the Premier Division of The Bristol Premier Combination League through default and a late surge kept the Vikings up.
The club had another magnificent achievement winning the 2004-05 Gloucestershire County League Championship under the superb management of Steve Miles, Nigel Brimble and Tony Clark.
2005-06 saw the club finish runners up and just missed out on promotion to the Western League but won the League Cup final beating the League Champions Lydney Town at Yate.
In 2006-07 the club took the decision to play its home games at Bristol Manor Farm as Western League football remained its goal, and as Lakemead Grove required a much need revamp, this had to be the best solution until the ground at Highridge was rebuilt. The team could only finish fifth as it adjusted to its new temporary home.
In 2007-08 the club were Runners Up and thought it had achieved Western League football as champions Hardwick’s ground was not up to standard, but a twist of fate saw them promoted to The Hellenic League as they were given a year’s grace to get their ground up together. And to add insult to injury, after just one season in the Hellenic League, Hardwick resigned.
2008-09 the club had one of its poorest seasons since it began, finishing fifth from bottom and relegation for both the Reserve and third teams.
2009-10 in his forth season in charge, Tony Cornelius saw his side finish the season as runners-up despite leading the table for most of the season. The League Champions, Thornbury Town, won their last 10 games to pip Highridge at the post. Ironically Thornbury's last deafeat was against Highridge. After the disappointment of relegation last season, the Reserves ended the season in the top half of the table. At one point looked like they might even finish in the top two. The Vikings on the other hand was relegated for the third succesive season. But they managed to produce some excellent youngsters who have estabilished themselves in the 1st and reserve teams, which a testiment to the youth set up at Highridge. The U15's and U14's were crowned Champions of their respective leagues, while the u12's were promoted. The season ended with the Chairman Paul Brimble deciding to resign. His reign as Chairman was a succesful one on and off the pitch.
Prior to the start of the 2010/2011 season, the club was forced to resign from The Gloucestershire County League. The club found itself in a very difficult position when the management team had resigned at the start of the season. With only a handful of players and no manager the club could not fulfil it's fixtures and had to withdraw from the league. What was also a sad chapter in the history of Highridge was this was the first time the club had entered the FA Vase, but again, had to withdraw from the competition. 2010 - 2011 season was a good year for the youth. Under 18s finished runners up in the Under 18s Bristol combination league in there first year at this level. The under 13s team won division 5 of the Avon Youth League. The under 11's won the B division of the Hanham Minor League bringing the first silverware to the club from the Hanham Minor League.
Highridge United Football Club are always determined to progress and achieve greater goals and can only seek this with a well run Club and the help of all its Players, Members, Supporters and Sponsors.