Folkestone Invicta vs Cray Wanderers – Isthmian Premier – Tuesday 16th January, 7.45 pm – Match Preview


Cray Wanderers run of away matches continues on Tuesday 16th January as the Wands head to Folkestone Invicta with both sides looking to keep away from the bottom four.  Kick off at Cheriton Road, 7.45 pm.

Both teams will come into the game in differing form with Cray without a win in four and have lost the last two matches while Folkestone who were in the bottom four at Christmas are unbeaten in three games in 2024.

Cray will be looking to bounce back swiftly from the 0-6 defeat at Billericay Town on Saturday which was untypical after recent solid performances and meant the Wands are 17th in the table on 25 points and six points ahead of 19th placed Cheshunt who have played two games fewer.

Gary Lockyer who netted at Bognor Regis Town last Tuesday is top scorer with 9 goals but the Wands will be hoping that Nyren Clunis and Jack Holland can soon return from injury. Tayo Oyebola, signed just after Christmas has two goals in four starts for Cray but in recent matches the aim has been to be more solid at the back but hopefully the goals will start to flow again and Saturday’s defeat can be swiftly forgotten. 

Folkestone Invicta after a bright start to the season find themselves in 16th place on twenty six points with former Wand Andy Drury at the helm after taking over in late November.  On Saturday Folkestone picked up a huge three points with a 2-0 win at Enfield Town with goals from ex-Cray Wanderer Tom Derry and Scott Heard.  

Last season Folkestone finished 12th and Cray were 4-2 winners at Folkestone in September 2022 with goals from Derry, Sinn’kaye Christie, Sam Wood and Dan Bassett and it finished 0-0 at Hayes Lane in February 2023.

So far at home Folkestone have beaten Margate (2-0), Cheshunt (2-1) and Billericay Town (1-0) and drawn with Whitehawk (1-1), Haringey Borough (1-1) and Wingate & Finchley (1-1). Invicta were beaten by Chatham Town (2-3), Enfield Town (1-2), Bognor Regis Town (0-1), Hastings United (0-5) and Hashtag United (1-3). Away from home, Folkestone won at Wingate & Finchley (4-0), Lewes (3-1), Margate (2-0) and Enfield Town (2-0), drew at Hashtag United and Potters Bar Town and were beaten at Concord Rangers, Kingstonian, Hornchurch, Carshalton Athletic, Dulwich Hamlet and Horsham. In the FA Cup, Folkestone reached the 2QR after beating Hartley Wintney but were beaten at home to Margate after a replay. In the FA Trophy, Folkestone were beaten at home by Haringey Borough on penalties in the Preliminary Round.  Top scorers so far are Ira Jackson and Ibrahim Olutade with eight goals.  Derry who started the season at Cray has three goals in six games for Invicta.

It promises to be an important game for both sides on what is sure to be a very cold night with both looking to move up the table and a more comfortable 2024.



Alcaline Stadium, Cheriton Road, Folkestone, Kent CT19 5JU

Adult: — £12.00
Concessions/Students: – £9.00

Juniors: 5-18 y/o – £ 3.00

U5’s with paying adult – Free

Card or cash payments will be accepted, although if possible, and if you are paying by cash please have the right money available. Card Payments can only be made at the Bar Invicta end.

Programme:  £2.00 


From the Cray’s – From the A20/Sidcup-by-Pass follow for 3.9 miles and then keep right to join the M20 and follow for 50 miles following signs for Dover/Channel Tunnel/Maidstone.  At Junction 13 take the A20 exit to Folkestone. Continue to drive along the A2034 then turn left at the 2nd set of Traffic lights and you will be able to see the stadium about 100 metres on the left (Just past the Harvey Grammer school.  

By train:

The nearest stations are: Folkestone West and Folkestone Central. Folkestone West is marginally nearer. From the station, walk east on Station Road towards and then on to Beachborough Road/B2064.  Then turn right onto Cheriton Road and after 0.2 miles turn left for the ground. 

From Folkestone Central – Walk east towards and onto Folkestone Station Road, then turn left onto Cheriton Road/A259, then at the roundabout take the 4th exit onto Cheriton Road/A2034 for 0.5 miles and then turn right for the ground.

For train travel midweek you can go from Orpington but no direct trains to either West or Central station. Your journey will require a change at either Sevenoaks or Tonbridge. From Bromley South there are also no direct trains and requires a change at Ashford International but overall quite a longish journey by train midweek of over one hour 40 minutes. Please check trains at for your best options.

The last train back to Bromley South after the game leaves Folkestone West at 22.13 or Central at 22:11 requiring a change at Ashford International or Tonbridge. Best to check the national rail enquiries website prior to travel.

A bit round the houses but maybe the quickest way there or home will be via Ebbsfleet International with trains at 25 and 52 past the hour and take 35 minutes to get there. There are trains back at 22.02 and 23.02 to take you back to Ebbsfleet International.

By bus:

Buses to Cheriton run every eight minutes from the town centre (bus station).

Service Nos. 71, 72, 73 – Get off just past Morrisons Supermarket.

Nearest pub:  The Bar Invicta at Folkestone is very good and welcoming for those that want to take it a bit easy.  This is situated on the main Cheriton Road directly in front of the stadium.  There is ample parking in front of the Bar and has been fully refurbished. There is a disabled entrance at the front and has disabled toilet facilities. There are two bars with a function room.

If you arrive at Folkestone early enough near Folkestone West station are the Nailbox pub on Coolinge Lane or the Royal Cheriton (339 Cheriton Road). This is going in the other direction to the ground. From Folkestone Central you will find The Park Inn on Radnor Park Road or the Firkin Alehouse (a renovated former Estate Agents, now a micropub) on Cheriton Place.   For Wetherspoon’s fans there is the Samuel Peto in Rendevouz Street which is about a five minute drive from Cheriton Road.   

For Fish and Chips there is the Corner Plaice (317 Cheriton Road, close to the Royal Cheriton) and the Golden Gate (374 Cheriton Road). From Central Station there is the Central Fish Bar (98 Cheriton Road). 

Folkestone is a port town on the edge of the South Downs and a prominent part of the English defences against French invaders.  A harbour was introduced during the 19th century and also good railway links to London and Kent gave good business to the area and became a popular holiday destination.  If you’ve time, the cliffs are well worth a visit and has at the top a Martello Tower which was built in 1806 as a look out should Napoleon invade and has been a coast guard lookout and a Second World War Naval mine control post.  The Brockhill Country Park in Saltwood between Folkestone and Hythe is part of a Kentish area of natural beauty.  There is also the oldest Battle of Britain Museum in the UK in nearby Hawkinge and the Battle of Britain Memorial on the White Cliffs is testament to the battering Kent took over the skies during the War.  Overlooking the Channel Tunnel entrance is the carving of the Folkestone White Horse which can be a spectacular sight.