1948-49 Eastern Counties League

Trainer: ?


The Eastern Counties League's first season commenced on 31 August 1935 and by the end of the following season there were concerns about the league's viability. Essex clubs had left to join the newly-established Essex County League, however, four new members (Colchester United Reserves, Cromer, Newmarket Town and Norwich CEYMS) were recruited. The following season the league expanded to 13 clubs as two of the Essex clubs rejoined (the Essex County League had been a failure with only five members completing the season and was not continued).

The 1939-40 season started, but was abandoned after the outbreak of World War II. After the war ended in May 1945 a meeting was held in late June to see whether the league could be restarted. However, a further meeting on 28 July decided that too few clubs were ready to resume footballing activities as many were unable to sign players and some grounds remained under the control of the armed forces. The league finally resumed for the 1946-47 season with ten clubs.

Prior to the start of the 1948-49 season the league was expanded to 16 clubs, largely through the addition of the 'A' teams of four London clubs, West Ham United, Arsenal, Chelsea and Tottenham Hotspur.



ECL Players 05

On the road with the Eastern Counties League side

Photographs by kind permission of West Ham United player Ron Wilson



HARWICH AND PARKESTON : Eastern Counties League

Royal Oak

2 - 3

21 August 1948


48_08_21 Harwich & Parkeston v. WHU ECL

48_08_21 Harwich & Parkeston v. WHU ECL - Back

Our first experience of Eastern Counties League football revealed that keen and clever opposition can be expected in this competition; four of the five Football League clubs whose “A” teams played were defeated in the opening encounters, Chelsea alone registering a success. But our XI containing seven amateurs made a very good showing against a strong, robust side before 2,500 spectators, losing 3-2 though a late goal, after being one down at half-time


ECL Players on their Travels 05


HARWICH AND PARKESTON : Eastern Counties League Cup

Royal Oak

1 - 10

28 August 1948


48_08_28 Harwich & Parkeston v. WHU ECL Cup


48_08_28 Harwich & Parkeston v. WHU ECL Cup - Back

We will not attempt to make excuses for a crushing defeat at Harwich, suffice it to say, greater experience was the decisive factor. Despite that set-back we are not disappointed with our newly-formed XI. Among them are several promising youngsters, who have youth very much on their side. During the week one of them – George Petchey – became the latest addition to the playing staff; George a 17.5 year-old inside-forward from Hornchurch, has been combining well with his younger partner – Jimmy Barrett (Junior) and we have great hopes of this pair as a future wing in our XI’s



CHELSEA 'A' : Eastern Counties League

Upton Park

0 - 3

2 September 1948


48_09_02 WHU v. Chelsea ECL




ECL Players 02



ECL Players 01




48_09_16 WHU v. Ipswich Town ECL



48_09_23 WHU v. Norwich City ECL



ECL Players 03

ECL Players 04


ECL Players 06




GORLESTON : Eastern Counties League

Recreation Ground

2 - 0

8 January 1949


49_01_08 Gorleston v. WHU ECL


TOTTENHAM HOTSPUR 'A' : Eastern Counties League

White Hart Lane

0 - 6

15 January 1949


49_01_15 Tottenham Hotspur v. WHU ECL


CLACTON TOWN : Eastern Counties League

The Rush Green Bowl

1 - 1 (Howe)

22 January 1949


49_01_22 Clacton Town v. WHU ECL


49_01_22 Clacton Town v. WHU ECL - Back



ECL Players 08


CLACTON TOWN : Eastern Counties League

The Rush Green Bowl

1 - 2

26 February 1949


49_02_26 Clacton Town v. WHU ECL


49_02_26 Clacton Town v. WHU ECL - Back


KING'S LYNN : Eastern Counties League

The Walks 2 - 4 5 March 1949


49_03_05 Kings Lynn v. WHU ECL






HARWICH AND PARKESTON : Eastern Counties League

Royal Oak

3 - 2

19 March 1949


49_03_19 Harwich & Pakeston v. WHU ECL


49_03_19 Harwich & Pakeston v. WHU ECL - Back






49_04_04 WHU v. Colchester United ECL


49_04_06 WHU v. Arsenal ECL



ECL Players 09


CHELMSFORD CITY RESERVES : Eastern Counties League

New Writtle Street

0 - 3

16 April 1949


49_04_16 Chelmsford City v. WHU ECL


49_04_16 Chelmsford City v. WHU ECL Back




49_05_04 WHU v. Tottenham Hotspur ECL


CHELMSFORD CITY RESERVES : Eastern Counties League

New Writtle Street

2 - 0 (Howe, Jackman)

7 May 1949


49_05_07 Chelmsford City v. WHU ECL


49_05_07 Chelmsford City v. WHU ECL - Back




Season 1948-49 1949-50 ECL

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