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How to progress 'The Pyramid'


Cornishman
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Bump.

This weekend a unified pyramid in Scottish football finally starts in anger.

It has taken 130yrs but in many ways it really only taken 8yrs - or even 4 - which many would consider remarkable. Ultimately a nationwide, comprehensive, interlinked system.

What began in 2013 with accession of Highland plus formation of Lowland, was followed in 2014 by accession of EOSL & SOSL. Then in 2017 we saw Kelty quit East Junior football for the EOSL followed by 25 more in 2018, another 2 in 2019, a further 10 in 2020, and the final 10 this year. Meanwhile in 2020 all 67 clubs quit West Junior football en masse to form a new WOSL alongside. Finally this year North Caledonian acceded under HL alongside a new Midland and North Juniors.

Edinburgh City, Cove and Kelty have been promoted to SPFL2. Edusport, Kelty, Bonnyrigg and Bo'ness have been promoted to LL. Other clubs have gone down to HL, LL, East, and South. Meanwhile non-league membership of SFA has soared from 38 to 71 and counting.

Throw in a national emergency: altogether not bad going. For most people tonight or tomorrow will be their first competitive game in 16 months... but for Scottish football, it's also a wee bit of history.

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Some interesting tidbits about the changed landscape of Scottish football over the past few years:

Bearsden (28k) is the most populous settlement without a senior team. Erskine (15k) runner up.

New Abbey (>100) remains the smallest place with a senior team in the form of Abbey Vale.

Cumbernauld (50k) now has three senior teams.

Paisley (77k) now has three senior teams. A senior team outside of St. Mirren hadn't been seen since Abercorn who dissapeared in the early 1920's. Paisley was a bit of a curious case as you have to go back a fair bit to find the town having a non-league side (excluding ammies).

Port Glasgow (15k) has senior football again. The last outing was Port Glasgow Athletic who folded in 1912.

Greenock (43k) now has two senior clubs.

Larkhall (15k) has two senior teams one of those being of course Royal Albert who were senior many moons ago having dropped down to junior level in 1927.

Vale Of Leven from Alexandria (7k) are senior once more last being seen at senior level in the late 1920's.

Barrhead (18k) returns Arthurlie to the senior fold last being seen in 28-29.

Rutherglen (31k) has senior football again for the first time since Clyde left for Cumbernauld in 1994.

East Kilbride (75k) has two senior clubs.

Clydebank (26k) has senior football again in the form of the Clydebank FC phoenix club. Could argue two senior clubs as Holm Park the historic home of Yoker Athletic lies within Clydebank's boundaries.

Ayr (47k) has two senior clubs for the first time since Ayr FC & Ayr Parkhouse were standalone clubs before merging to form the current Ayr United.

Irvine (35k) has two senior teams. Zero idea about who the previous senior club was in the town.

Beith (6k) is graced with senior football again with the previous representative at this level being Beith who dropped out of the SFL following the winding up of the first attempt at a 3rd tier national league in 1926. The current Beith are a direct successor & use the same ground.

Kilsyth (10k) has two senior teams.

Lugar (?) has Lugar Boswell Thistle gracing senior football again. I'm not quite sure when they were last a senior club.

Elgin (25k) has two senior clubs

Peterhead (20k) has two senior clubs.

Inverurie (13k) has two senior clubs.

Fraserburgh (13k) has two senior clubs.

Keith (5k) has two senior clubs.

Forrres (10k) has two senior clubs.

Nairn (10k) has two senior clubs plus a Nairn County 2nd xi.


Buckie (8k) has two senior clubs albeit Buckie Thistle are currently in abeyance.

Kelty being promoted to the SPFL takes league football up to five Fife teams for the first time since Lochgelly United in 25-26.

Aberdeen now has 8 senior clubs.

Dundee now has 9 senior clubs.

Glasgow now has 20 senior clubs.

Edinburgh where senior non-league trumped junior football historically now has 14 senior clubs.

Inverness has 4 senior clubs.

With Campbeltown Pupils (5k) moving to senior level this gives Argyll & Bute senior football for the first time. The only council areas without a senior team playing league football are Na h-Eileanan Siar & Shetland. Lewis & Harris FC do however play in some North Caledonian cup competitions.



Note I'm probably missing some random factoids as what defined a senior clubs in the early days of Scottish football wasn't so straight forward & clubs chopped & changed often sometimes.


 

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  • 1 month later...

I put a lot of this population/clubs in pyramid info into a spreadsheet at work because it looks like I'm working but I'm not...

https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/16j3XFB0PfrVsKj3k_8eBzLCVOE5mh3-ZQiYvlUxzoXs/edit?usp=sharing

Some notable areas without a senior club now... 

Obviously Shetland and the Western Isles have travel issues holding them back but, ignoring them, Bearsden (27k) and Clarkston (20k) are, technically, outside Glasgow but individual areas within Greater Glasgow without teams.

A bit further out Erskine (15k) have no team and Prestwick (14k) is the largest town in Ayrshire without a club.

Helenburgh (14k) could easily cover a club with that population. Milngavie (13k) and Giffnock (12k) are in the same sorta boat as Bearsden and Clarkston on a smaller scale. Westhill (11k) is a suburb of Aberdeen but, then again, so's Cove with a smaller population and they're doing alright. Westhill in the Highlands is the largest place in the Highlands without a club as well funnily enough. 

Cupar (9k) is the largest place in Fife without a club and Cupar Hearts are a well known amateur club who could make the jump to the pyramid ye'd imagine. Gourock (10k) doesn't have a club but Gourock and Greenock are so close it ends that most fans in Gourock support Morton Rangers. 

South Queensferry, Dunblane, Tullibody and Monifeith are places in the Lothians, Perthshire, Clackmannanshire and Angus without clubs and populations that could support one as well I guess. 
 

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I put a lot of this population/clubs in pyramid info into a spreadsheet at work because it looks like I'm working but I'm not...

https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/16j3XFB0PfrVsKj3k_8eBzLCVOE5mh3-ZQiYvlUxzoXs/edit?usp=sharing

Some notable areas without a senior club now... 

Obviously Shetland and the Western Isles have travel issues holding them back but, ignoring them, Bearsden (27k) and Clarkston (20k) are, technically, outside Glasgow but individual areas within Greater Glasgow without teams.

A bit further out Erskine (15k) have no team and Prestwick (14k) is the largest town in Ayrshire without a club.

Helenburgh (14k) could easily cover a club with that population. Milngavie (13k) and Giffnock (12k) are in the same sorta boat as Bearsden and Clarkston on a smaller scale. Westhill (11k) is a suburb of Aberdeen but, then again, so's Cove with a smaller population and they're doing alright. Westhill in the Highlands is the largest place in the Highlands without a club as well funnily enough. 

Cupar (9k) is the largest place in Fife without a club and Cupar Hearts are a well known amateur club who could make the jump to the pyramid ye'd imagine. Gourock (10k) doesn't have a club but Gourock and Greenock are so close it ends that most fans in Gourock support Morton Rangers. 

South Queensferry, Dunblane, Tullibody and Monifeith are places in the Lothians, Perthshire, Clackmannanshire and Angus without clubs and populations that could support one as well I guess. 
 
Monifieth are either **** or Arabs
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Some interesting tidbits about the changed landscape of Scottish football over the past few years:

Bearsden (28k) is the most populous settlement without a senior team. Erskine (15k) runner up.

New Abbey (>100) remains the smallest place with a senior team in the form of Abbey Vale.

Cumbernauld (50k) now has three senior teams.

Paisley (77k) now has three senior teams. A senior team outside of St. Mirren hadn't been seen since Abercorn who dissapeared in the early 1920's. Paisley was a bit of a curious case as you have to go back a fair bit to find the town having a non-league side (excluding ammies).

Port Glasgow (15k) has senior football again. The last outing was Port Glasgow Athletic who folded in 1912.

Greenock (43k) now has two senior clubs.

Larkhall (15k) has two senior teams one of those being of course Royal Albert who were senior many moons ago having dropped down to junior level in 1927.

Vale Of Leven from Alexandria (7k) are senior once more last being seen at senior level in the late 1920's.
Barrhead (18k) returns Arthurlie to the senior fold last being seen in 28-29.
Rutherglen (31k) has senior football again for the first time since Clyde left for Cumbernauld in 1994.
East Kilbride (75k) has two senior clubs.
Clydebank (26k) has senior football again in the form of the Clydebank FC phoenix club. Could argue two senior clubs as Holm Park the historic home of Yoker Athletic lies within Clydebank's boundaries.
Ayr (47k) has two senior clubs for the first time since Ayr FC & Ayr Parkhouse were standalone clubs before merging to form the current Ayr United.
Irvine (35k) has two senior teams. Zero idea about who the previous senior club was in the town.

Beith (6k) is graced with senior football again with the previous representative at this level being Beith who dropped out of the SFL following the winding up of the first attempt at a 3rd tier national league in 1926. The current Beith are a direct successor & use the same ground.
Kilsyth (10k) has two senior teams.
Lugar (?) has Lugar Boswell Thistle gracing senior football again. I'm not quite sure when they were last a senior club.
Elgin (25k) has two senior clubs

Peterhead (20k) has two senior clubs.

Inverurie (13k) has two senior clubs.

Fraserburgh (13k) has two senior clubs.

Keith (5k) has two senior clubs.

Forrres (10k) has two senior clubs.

Nairn (10k) has two senior clubs plus a Nairn County 2nd xi.

Buckie (8k)  has two senior clubs albeit Buckie Thistle are currently in abeyance.
Kelty being promoted to the SPFL takes league football up to five Fife teams for the first time since Lochgelly United in 25-26.

Aberdeen now has 8 senior clubs.

Dundee now has 9 senior clubs.

Glasgow now has 20 senior clubs.

Edinburgh where senior non-league trumped junior football historically now has 14 senior clubs.

Inverness has 4 senior clubs.

With Campbeltown Pupils (5k) moving to senior level this gives Argyll & Bute senior football for the first time. The only council areas without a senior team playing league football are Na h-Eileanan Siar & Shetland. Lewis & Harris FC do however play in some North Caledonian cup competitions.



Note I'm probably missing some random factoids as what defined a senior clubs in the early days of Scottish football wasn't so straight forward & clubs chopped & changed often sometimes.


 


Just looking at it for Perth just now, and Perthshire has suddenly gone from one senior team to multiple.

Perth itself has St Johnstone, Letham, Jeanfield Swift’s & Kinnoull Juniors.

Outside of Perth you’ve got Scone Thistle, Blairgowrie, Luncarty and Coupar Angus.

Pitlochry (3000 population) Auchterarder (5200) and Crieff (7500) are probably your 3 largest communities in our county without a senior or junior side representing them now.

The chances of those places having any representation in the pyramid system though is very slim I’d say.
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