Name: Chippenham Town FC

Founded: 1873

Stadium: Hardenhuish Park

Capacity: 3,000 (300 seated)

Last season: 1st in Southern League Premier Division (promoted)

Champions of the Southern League Premier Division for the 2016/17 season, Gloucester City will renew acquaintances with Chippenham Town in the National League South this season.

The Bluebirds are also newcomers to the National League South next season, having been promoted as champions from the Southern League Premier Division last season, their highest ever finish in the English football system.

Established in 1873, the club first joined the Wiltshire League in 1901, finishing joint top of the table with Warminster Town but losing the championship play-off replay. They joined Division Two of the Western League in 1904, but also continued to play in the Wiltshire League.

At the end of the 1905/06 season, the club withdrew from the Western League and went on to win the Wiltshire League in 1907/07 and 1908/09, finishing runners-up in 1909/10. They became runners-up three more times before winning again in 1928/29.

In 1930, Chippenham re-joined Division Two of the Western League, where they won for the first time in 1951/52. They also reached the first round of the FA Cup for the first time that season, losing 3-0 to Leyton Orient. They left the division again at the end of the 1964/65 season.

In 1968 the club joined the Premier Division of the Hellenic League, where they played until re-joining the Western League in 1973. In 1999/00, the club reached the final of the FA Vase, eventually losing 1-0 to Deal Town at Wembley Stadium.

Chippenham were promoted to Division One West of the Southern League in 2000/01, finishing runners-up in their first season and earning promotion to the Southern League Premier Division. In 2005/06 the club reached the FA Cup first round for the second time, although they lost again, this time losing 1-0 to Worcester City.

After a number of play-off losses, losing in the final to Hednesford Town in 2004/05, Bedford Town in 2005/06, Nuneaton Town in 2009/10 and losing in the semi-final to Halesowen Town in 2007/08, the club finally made the step up by winning the Premier Division with a league record of 103 points.

We have had some classic encounters with the Bluebirds in the past, none more so thrilling than in the FA Cup Third Qualifying Round of 2003 when, having trailed for most of the game, the Tigers rallied to win 4-3 at Meadow Park.

It was another FA Cup meeting that brought late drama between the two sides in 2012, as we hosted Chippenham at Whaddon Road in the Fourth Qualifying Round.

Having not made the First Round Proper in 23 years, it looked like the Tigers would be heading to a replay with the scores locked at 0-0. However, a brilliant team goal was finished by Darren Edwards to send Dave Mehew’s side into the First Round draw.

Gloucester City vs Chippenham Town

P      W      D      L      GF     GA      GD

17      7        3      7       27      26       +1

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