9 Mar 2023

Did you know? – Morecambe Football Club

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Morecambe Football Club – What happened before the Mazuma Stadium and League 1?

The Shrimps were founded in 1920, and if you were wondering where the nickname came from, it’s from the town’s local speciality, potted shrimps.

I’m going to get this out there early, and please correct me if I’m wrong, but Morecambe will be one of the most successful clubs to play at Wembley Stadium, with a 100%-win record 😲 I’ll explain more below!

League History

Life begun in the Lancashire Combination League when they shared a ground with Morecambe Cricket Club. Attracting large crowds of up to 3,000 for Derby Matches, something had to change, and they soon moved to Roseberry Park. Then-President J.B. Christie bought the land and the grounds name with changed to Christie Park in his honour.

Although they won the league 5 times, success over the next 48 years was hard to come by, and in 1968 they moved leagues to the newly formed Northern Premier League.

FA Trophy and Northern Premier League Presidents Cup wins followed before they gained promotion to the Football Conference.

Promotion to the football league was achieved in 2007 and then to League One in 2021.

The Ground

Christie Park was their home for almost 90 years with the ground having a close relation to us here at Lancastrian Estates. That is because the iconic main stand, the only seating area in the ground, was constructed by A Robinsons Builders & Sons. They developed large parts of the Morecambe area, with family running Lancastrian Estates today.

In 2010 though, it was time for a significant upgrade, when they moved to their current home, the Mazuma Stadium. The almost 6,500 capacity stadium has served them well during their tenure in the football league offering match day hospitality, corporate facilities, function facilities, and also hosting Weddings!

They also played to host one of the most prestigious games in football. A Charity Match between Estate Agents & Solicitors from Morecambe and Lancaster! I think the Estate Agents were asserting some dominance on the fixture before it’s end prior a few years ago.

The Managers

There have been some iconic names in recent times that are ingrained in folk lore locally. Jim Harvey starts the list off in recent history. He was manager from 1994 to 2005, unfortunately having to hand over the reins for health reasons. In his time though, he had created the platform for things to come.

Sammy Mcllory, of Manchester United fame, and good friend of Jim Harvey came next. Under his stewardship, Morecambe gained promotion to the Football League in 2007 after a Wembley win against Exeter.

2011 saw club legend, Jim Bentley, take the managerial role, and despite some turbulent results, cemented the clubs place in the football league. Jim is such a club legend that he has his name associated with a bar at the Mazuma Stadium!

Derek Adams is the current manager at the club, and he achieved the unthinkable, by getting the club promoted to League One in 2021.

Live is still in League One, and long may it continue!!

Now, I made a bold claim earlier. I mentioned that Morecambe could be one of the most Successful Clubs to play at Wembley. Please do correct me if I am wrong, but it’s played 3, won 3.

FA Trophy win against Dartford in 1974. The Playoff Final win against Exeter in May 2007, only the 2nd game to be played at the New Wembley. We even set a new record on that day in 2007, with the first penalty miss at the New Wembley Stadium. Can anyone tell me the penalty taker? Answer at the bottom 👇

The 3rd win was the promotion to League One in 2021 against Newport County.

Have a missed a game at Wembley that we lost? 🤔 if not, it’s 100% record and one of the most successful teams at Wembley, if not the most successful! 😜

In Summary, Morecambe FC is a staple in the local community. Inspiring children to want to play for the their local team, and also bringing tourism to the area through their inclusion in the football league. Especially when a local derby takes place against the likes of Fleetwood.

P.S. the penalty taker was Wayne Curtis. It’s also my opinion that this game should have been regarded as the 1st to take place at the New Wembley. The official first game was the day before, and FA Cup final, between Chelsea and Manchester United. I watched it, I wish I hadn’t as I’ll never get that time back, but Chelsea won the game 1:0 after extra time in what was possibly the worst cup final game I have ever witnessed.