Walthamstow Football Club, nicknamed “The Stow,” is a non-league football club based in Walthamstow, London.
Established in 1970, they currently compete in the Pitching In Southern Football League Division One Central, which is part of the eighth tier of English football. The team calls Wadham Lodge Sports Ground their home ground.
Walthamstow Football Club, one of the oldest in London, has undergone numerous reforms and name changes since its establishment in 1868 as Leyton FC. The club originally played friendly matches and participated in the FA Cup, but it dissolved in 1880 due to the loss of its ground. A second incarnation emerged in 1887 with ties to Matlock Cricket Club, and it underwent various relocations and name changes, eventually returning to Leyton and claiming victories in the Essex Senior Cup, London Senior Cup, and South Essex League.
The club turned professional in 1904 and joined the London League. Financial difficulties led to its disbandment in 1912, but a new Leyton FC was formed in 1913. This version was short-lived due to World War I. The most successful period came with the fourth Leyton FC in 1919, achieving significant success in the FA Amateur Cup and FA Cup. However, by the 1970s, declining fortunes led to a merger with Wingate, and the club later became Leyton Pennant after merging with Walthamstow Pennant in 1995. This era was marked by modest achievements, predominantly in the Isthmian League.
In 2003, the club was renamed Waltham Forest and aimed for Football League status, but only secured an Essex Senior Cup. Management disputes in 2008 led to a temporary relocation to Ilford and eventual relegation to the Essex Senior League. In 2018, the club adopted the name Walthamstow FC, hoping to revitalize its connection with the local community and achieve success both on and off the field.
Former players and managers elsewhere in the non-league pyramid