Why a small name change really matters to these non-leaguers

EMLEY football club have got their name back.

Memorable moment: Paul David scores for Emley in their narrow FA Cup third round defeat at West Ham.

AFC Emley have secured FA, County FA and league approval to change the club’s name back to Emley AFC next season.

The 1988 FA Vase finalists, who narrowly lost 2-1 to West Ham United in the third round of the FA Cup in 1998, were formed in 1903 and became a powerhouse in Yorkshire non-league football circles.

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They made what proved an ill-fated move to Wakefield from their pit village in 2003 and became Wakefield & Emley FC.

However, AFC Emley was formed in 2005 to keep football at the Welfare Ground and with the demise of the Wakefield club five years ago, the club’s current committee felt that sufficient time had passed to reclaim the club’s heritage.

The Northern Counties East League club’s chairman, Nigel Wakefield, said: “We’re immensely proud of the original club’s achievements. For many, those are considered our achievements but, regardless of the history books, they are integral to the current club’s heritage.

“Our home ground and our reputation were forged by the many people that moved the club up the leagues from 1903 until the move out of the village. I can think of no more fitting way to honour all those that have gone before us than reinstating that famous name.”