With only two games to go for Eastbourne Town Women’s team in the Sussex County Women & Girls League, they needed only one point to secure being the SCWGL Division One champions. This Sunday’s game at home against 8th place Denne Park was called off yesterday afternoon by the away team themselves and the league awarded three points to Eastbourne Town Women, crowning them champions and an automatic promotion into the SCWGL Premier Division next season.

Town Women (L-R) Loren O’Dwyer, Geri Burt, Maddie Thornton-Barter and Dani Parfitt.

Rick Tate, women’s manager since the beginning of 2022 said “for my first full season in charge of the ladies, I’m very proud of the whole squad! When we realised a little way into the season that we could win the league, so we focused on each game. We showed great character and determination in certain games by coming from a goal down to win some games. So we now look forward to next season and look to add to the squad over the summer.”

Team Captain Dani Parfitt stated, “What can I say?!? This squad has shown what determination and team spirit can do. We started this season off the back of relegation, with no training kit, no winter training facilities, barely 11 players, and we have turned it around to be league champions. We have worked so hard this season to define our identity. The attitude on the pitch, the style of football, the ‘family’ spirit of the squad. We made it hard at times, going behind too many times to remember and having to claw the game back.”

She added, “I am so proud of the girls, Rick the manager, John our Lino, Theo the guy who sits on the committee and fights our corner, our many supporters. For me personally, completing my 9th season at the club, honoured to wear the captains armband, I can’t tell you how much this means to me. I’m gutted not to have won the title on the pitch, with muddy knees and my team around me, but it is what it is and I’m glad we’ve still got one last game to come off that pitch smiling. We have a lot of work to do over the summer ready for next season, but BRING IT ON!”

Dani Parfitt is currently the league top scorer on 23 goals

Eastbourne Town women last won a league title back in 2011 in the South East Counties Premier Division earning themselves promotion into the London & South East regional league, the fifth tier of the women’s football pyramid. They nearly earned promotion the following season into the Women’s National League losing out by just 4 points. Their last achievement was in 2015 when they reached the 3rd round of the Women’s FA Cup, losing 4-2 in extra time to Derby County Women.

Club chairman, Dave Shearing, also added on how pleased and proud we are as a club of their achievements an hopefully its the start of a bright future of the women’s team.

The Women still have one more game left on the April 2nd at home with mid-table Brighton Seagals who have four games left and will be looking to secure a top three finish over Eastbourne Borough Women and Seaford based Premier United who have already completed their season.

Kick off on the 2nd is at 2:00pm and its free admission.

Written by Ed Copping
Photo’s by Josh Claxton