With six clubs – Chopwell Officials Club, Cullercoats Custom Planet, Amble FC, Newcastle British Telecom, South Shields United and Peterlee Town – either folding or resigning from the league over the course of last season and Alnwick Town getting promotion back to the Northern League, there were places to fill at last week’s AGM. Bedlington Terriers and Alnwick have both entered second-string teams (though league rules mean they’ll have ‘A’ and not Reserves after their names). As more than half their team are at university in Newcastle, Alston have switched from the Westmorland League, joining Harraby Catholic Club and Northbank Carlisle as Cumbria’s representatives in the league. The admission of Tyneside Amateur League champions Whickham Lang Jacks (who play on the next door pitch to Northern League Whickham FC) and New Fordley means the Alliance will have 16 teams in its top and bottom divisions next season.
In the Wearside League, New Marske resigned last week after losing their manager and most of their team to Stokesley. Silksworth folded at the end of the season and Easington – runners-up to Ryhope CW – were promoted to the Northern League. Peterlee Town, Silksworth Rangers and Gateshead Leam Rangers were accepted as new members. The Wearside League season gets underway a week earlier than the Northern Alliance on Saturday August 6th.