Crest of Hashtag United Football Club

Hashtag United

The Tags

Hashtag United Football Club, nicknamed “The Tags,” is a non-league football club based in South Ockendon, Essex.

Established in 2016, they currently compete in the Pitching In Isthmian League Premier Division, which is part of the seventh tier of English football. The team calls Parkside their home ground.

The club owes its origins to Carmichael-Browns Athletic, a team founded by Spencer Owen during his school years. The popularity of a memorial match’s highlights in 2016 inspired Spencer to take his team on an extraordinary journey that led them to the Isthmian League, the 8th tier of English football, within four years. Initially, the team played exhibition matches in a unique league format inspired by the FIFA video game, gaining widespread attention and playing in various locations, including Spain, the USA, and Wembley. Key players included YouTube creators Theo Baker and Charlie Morley, along with Scott Pollock, who emerged from the first “Hashtag Academy” and later signed a professional contract with Northampton Town.

In 2018, Hashtag United transitioned from an exhibition team to a competitive club by joining the Eastern Senior League Division 1 (South) for the 2018/19 season. Under the guidance of experienced manager Jay Devereux, the team overcame a challenging start to finish as league champions. They continued to strengthen their squad for the Essex Senior League campaign in 2019/20, incorporating more non-league players and talent from their second Academy series. Despite the season being voided, Hashtag United was second in the league and in two cup semi-finals. During the 2020 break, the club merged with AFC Basildon and Forest Glade, expanding to over 40 teams catering to various age groups and genders.

By 2021, Hashtag United had a new home at Bowers & Pitsea FC and made a dramatic FA Cup debut, highlighted by a match against Braintree Town. They were promoted to the Isthmian League North based on their performance over two curtailed seasons. In their debut season, they finished 8th, narrowly missing the play-offs. However, the following season, they clinched the championship with a remarkable 21-game winning streak, amassing 97 points.