Clapton CFC vs Tower Hamlets preview: Easter Monday derby for the men’s first team

Clapton Community FC vs Tower Hamlets takes place on Monday, April 1 2024 with a 3pm kick off at the Old Spotted Dog Ground, Forest Gate, East London.

This will be the third last game of the season for the Clapton CFC men’s first team as the hunt for a play-off spot goes down to the wire.

Just 48 hours after the away trip to leaders Benfleet comes an East London derby against Tower Hamlets. Both teams have plenty to play for going into the final weeks of the season, it should be a classic April Fools’ Day clash.


Tower Hamlets FC (formerly Bethnal Green United FC) formed in 2000 in the Middlesex County Football League. They were promoted into the Essex Senior League in 2008 and almost achieved promotion again into the Isthmian League. In their years in the ESL they won Gordon Brasted and League Cup trophies and reached the last 16 of the FA Vase. After a two-season spell in the South East Counties League playing away from the Mile End Stadium, they were relegated to this division two seasons ago.

Form guide

Tower Hamlets have had a run of tough fixtures in 2024 against some of the division’s top teams – Benfleet, Wormley Rovers and Harlow Town. They are lower mid-table although they need a win or two from their remaining games to avoid being sucked into the relegation fight.

Previous meetings

The teams played out an entertaining 2-2 draw in November in our first ever meeting. Meanwhile Tower Hamlets played at the Old Spotted Dog Ground on Wednesday, as a one-off against St Margaretsbury, so they will be familiar with the pitch and facilities. 

Players to watch

Young striker Solomon Asomah is one of the division’s top scorers with 19 goals. Player-manager Kiernan Hughes-Mason is formerly of Millwall, Grimsby Town and Welling United. Experienced forward Craig Heskey is no stranger to the Old Spotted Dog Ground.


No tickets are needed, just turn up and pay. Spectator entry is via the Disraeli Road turnstile from 2pm.

Standard admission is now £4 (we are not allowed to charge less), concessions can pay what they want, and under 13s are free. A full list of concessions is available here.

Cash and cards are accepted everywhere in the ground – cash is quicker at the turnstile to help prevent queues but card quicker elsewhere.

Food and drink

The Clubhouse bar will be open from 2pm until 7pm. 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 reusable cups now.

Please help the club by purchasing drinks from the bar. The premises are licensed so we ask you not to bring your own alcohol into the OSD. The profits from the bar are invested in maintaining the grounds.

We also have hot drinks (coffee, tea, hot chocolate, Bovril) and water and squash at the bar, please help yourself. There is no charge but feel free to put some change in the donation box.

We have crisps, nuts, and Hackney Gelato on sale in the clubhouse. Outside, Fusion Foods will be selling hot and cold food – meat, veggie and vegan options.

Hygiene bank collection

The hygiene bank collection is back at all home games, with the collection box at the main entrance. Our charity partners Magpie Project support mums and young children in temporary accommodation. They need:

● Toothpaste ● Toothbrush ● Shower gel ● Shampoo ● Deodorant ● Sanitary towel


You can buy a shirt, beanie, bucket hat, scarf and badge on the merch stall. The stall is open before the game, at half-time, and afterwards, only.

We will have an 8-page matchday programme available at the entrance and merch stall, pick one up for free, donations welcome to cover the printing costs.

Tickets for the Harlow Town game on the last day of the season are limited in number and will be available to buy in person on the stall too.


There is an accessible toilet with baby-changing facilities next to the Clubhouse. The Clubhouse main entrance is also step-free.

Pitch access

The Grounds committee 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.

Children welcome

Prams and pushchairs are always very welcome at the OSD, but please avoid blocking walkways. Make sure all children are behind the perimeter fencing during games too please.

If/when Clapton CFC wins a game, children are invited to join the players in their post-match celebration on the side of the pitch.

Dogs welcome

Spectators are welcome, in fact encouraged, to bring dogs to the OSD, but please keep on leads.

Bikes welcome

There’s space to leave your bikes inside the Old Spotted Dog Ground, next to the main stand. You can lock them to the fencing. 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.

Any questions?

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