Clapton Community FC vs Hackney WFC takes place on Wednesday, October 11 2023 with a 7.45pm kick off at the Old Spotted Dog Ground, Forest Gate, East London.
This is the first ever midweek women’s first team league game and who better to mark this moment at the Old Spotted Dog Ground than our East London friends Hackney WFC?
Due to the frenzied end to last season – many clubs in our division played several double header games in order to cram in their fixtures – the league is keen on some midweeks this season.
Clapton CFC team bagged an impressive 5-3 win away at Welling United on Sunday in the league cup, after trailing 2-1 and 3-2. That should give us some confidence going into this game although Hackney have started the season well too.
Hackney WFC was the first totally women-run team and the first out lesbian team in the country. It currently has around 100 players across its three teams: the first team, the reserves and a development team.
They have spent over a decade training outside Hackney due to the lack of suitable pitches in the borough, particularly for women’s teams. Last season they launched a new red and black kit which includes the club’s slogan, ‘Playing with Pride since 1986’, on the sleeve along with the progress flag and the black triangle which has been reclaimed by lesbians as a feminist symbol of pride and solidarity.
Our first ever competitive meeting came in February when we squeezed a 2-0 win at their then home at the Douglas Eyre Centre in Walthamstow (they’ve since moved to Wadham Lodge). In the return fixture in April, we lost 2-1 to a revitalised Hackney side who were battling relegation at the time.
They finished last season in fine form to finish comfortably above the drop zone and that’s continued this term, including a huge 10-1 win over Richmond Park on the opening day.
Players to watch
Our former hotshot striker Fae Fulconis is now playing up front for Hackney WFC and had two great games against us, including a shot from distance to win the Old Spotted Dog Ground game. Fae is joint top scorer alongside another familiar face, River Honer, who has played here against us for Queerspace and as a guest for FC United of Manchester before.
No tickets are needed, just turn up and pay at the turnstile.
Admission for women’s first team games is by donation, with a suggested £4 for waged adults to match the charge for the men’s first team, but any amount or none at all is fine.
Spectator entry will be via the Disraeli Road turnstile from 6.45pm. Cash and cards are accepted everywhere.
Food and drink
The Clubhouse bar will open at 6.45pm and close at 10.15pm.
We have a wide range of alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks on sale. Two beers are on tap – Pretty Decent Lager and Old Scaffold Daze, our own IPA.
We also have hot drinks (coffee, tea, hot chocolate, Bovril) and water at the bar which are free, please help yourself.
We have crisps, nuts, and Hackney Gelato on sale in the clubhouse.
There is no hot food on sale for this game.
We will have a four-page matchday programme available, pick one up for free, donations welcome to cover the printing costs.
As it stands, the merch stall may not open for this game.
There is an accessible toilet with baby-changing facilities next to the Clubhouse. The Clubhouse main entrance is also step-free.
The Grounds committee need to request all spectators keep off the pitch before games and at half-time. They need to carry out safety pitch inspections before play begins, which are voided if people have gone on the pitch.
Prams and pushchairs are always very welcome in the OSD, but please avoid blocking walkways. Make sure all children are behind the perimeter fencing during games please.
Kids can play on the pitch (weather permitting) after games but not before or at half-time.
Spectators are welcome, in fact encouraged, to bring dogs to the OSD, but please keep on leads.
There’s space to leave your bikes inside the Old Spotted Dog Ground, to the right of the outdoor toilets. You can lock them to the fencing. It’s best to arrive early so you don’t have to push your bike through crowds. Please don’t leave them locked to the pitch perimeter as it blocks the walkway.
We are currently working on plans for a better bike parking and locking system – watch this space.
If you have any further questions, look for anyone wearing a pink hi-viz vest or the bar staff who will be happy to answer.
The Old Spotted Dog Ground is at 212 Upton Lane in Forest Gate, London E7 9NP.
Forest Gate station (Elizabeth Line) and Wanstead Park (Overground) are 15 minutes’ walk away, Plaistow (District / Hammersmith & City) is 20 minutes’ walk, and Stratford (National Rail/Overground/Elizabeth/Jubilee/Central/DLR) is 25 minutes’ walk.
If you’ve not been to the OSD yet, here are some even more detailed directions.
Parking is free on the streets to the north and west of the ground (e.g. Disraeli Rd) on Saturdays and Sundays. On Saturdays, parking is restricted on streets to the east and south of the ground (e.g. St George’s Rd and Upton Lane), but there are no restrictions on Sundays. Always check local signage for any changes. And if possible come by public transport, bike or walk
Map of the Old Spotted Dog Ground