The founding date of the club is 1885. Football was a popular pastime in the town, and many of the men who worked in the local fishing industry would gather on the beach or in fields to play informal matches. The early days of the club were informal, with matches being arranged between teams of local residents. There were no set rules or regulations, and the matches were often played on uneven fields with no real boundaries. However, as the popularity of the sport grew, the need for a more structured approach became apparent.
In 1894, the Dorset Football Association was formed, and LRFC became one of the first local clubs to join. This gave the club more structure, with set rules and regulations, and also allowed it to compete against other teams in the area. The early years of the club were successful, and it quickly gained a reputation as one of the strongest teams in the area. The players were mainly local residents, many of whom worked in the fishing industry, and they were known for their strong work ethic both on and off the field.
The outbreak of World War I had a significant impact on the club, with many of its players being called up to serve in the armed forces. As a result, the club struggled to field a team, and matches were sporadic. However, despite the difficulties, the club continued to exist, and by the end of the war, it was ready to start competing once again.
The inter-war years saw the club go from strength to strength. The team had a number of talented players, and they achieved a number of notable victories against other local teams. The club’s fan base also grew, with many of the town’s residents turning out to support the team. The outbreak of World War II had a similar impact on the club to that of the previous conflict, with many of its players being called up to serve. However, despite this, the club continued to exist, albeit in a reduced form.
After the war, the club underwent significant changes. The introduction of the National Health Service saw many of the town’s residents move away to find work. As a result, the club struggled to field a team, and matches were few and far between.
However, in the early 1950s, a group of local residents came together to try and revive the club. They worked tirelessly to rebuild the team, recruiting new players and arranging matches against other local sides.
Their hard work paid off, and by the end of the decade, the club was once again a force to be reckoned with. The team mainly played against other sides in Dorset and Devon, but they also competed against sides from further afield, including London and the Midlands. Throughout the 1960s and 1970s, the club continued to grow and develop. New facilities were constructed, including a clubhouse and changing rooms, and the quality of the team improved significantly. In 1981, the club achieved a significant milestone when it won the Dorset Junior Cup. This was the first major trophy that the club had won in its history, and it was seen as a testament to the hard work and dedication of the players and staff.
Throughout the 1980s and 1990s, the club continued to build on its success. It won a number of local and regional tournaments, and its fanbase continued to grow. The team also began to attract players from further afield, who were attracted by the club’s ethos and reputation.
Today, LRFC is a well-respected club that continues to compete at a high level. It has a strong fanbase and a talented group of players, many of whom are local residents. The club also has excellent facilities, and it is seen as an important part of the local community.
In conclusion, the history of LRFC is a testament to the importance of sport in bringing communities together. From its humble beginnings in the late 19th century to its current position as a respected local side, the club has played an important role in the lives of the people of Lyme Regis. Its success is down to the hard work and dedication of its players and staff, and it is a reminder of the importance of teamwork, determination, and community spirit.
Pitch Location: Lyme Regis Football Club, The Davy Fort, Charmouth Rd, Lyme Regis, DT7 3DT