Bowers & Pitsea vs Cray Wanderers – Isthmian Premier – Tuesday 30th November, 7.45pm – Match Preview.
After the excitement of Saturday’s FA Trophy scalp of Ebbsfleet United, Cray Wanderers return to league action on Tuesday, 30th November with a trip to Essex to face Bowers & Pitsea. Kick off at the Len Salmon Stadium is 7.45pm.
Both sides will be looking for points just to end November to start to climb the table with Cray in 20th place and Bowers & Pitsea two places above on 15 points. However, both have only played 14 games and have games in hand on teams around them. The match pits the last official Champions of the Isthmian North and Isthmian South-East.
Cray’s recent performances have been very encouraging and deserved more than just one point from two games against top 6 sides, Kingstonian and Folkestone Invicta. Danny Kedwell’s side upset the form book on Saturday to beat Ebbsfleet United, second in the National South and the reward for that is to now face league leaders Dartford at home in the 3rd Round.
There were many exceptional performances against a good side on Saturday and all the team rose to the occasion with Jamie Yila’s two goals catching the eye but also Jack Turner made at least six fine saves, Richie Danquah and Dean Beckwith were outstanding at the back, Freddy Barton and Tom Hanfrey worked hard as full backs, Cameron Brodie was disciplined and industrious as was Fjord Rogers up front while Daniel Uchechi and Chris Dickson worked so hard and ran all day. The players also showed ice-cold precision to score all five penalties and clinch a place in the 3rd Round for the first time. Sam Skeffington should be free to return after being ineligible in the FA Trophy with Andy Drury perhaps the main injury doubt for the game.

BROMLEY, GREATER LONDON, ENGLAND – NOVEMBER 24: Cray Wanderers’s Jamie Yila tries to get his head to a cross during The Pitching In Isthmian Premier League match between Cray Wanderers and Folkestone Invicta at Hayes Lane on November 24, 2021 in Bromley, Greater London, England . (Photo: © Jon Hilliger / HilligerPix)

Before the trophy continues, the Wands have some big league games upcoming, Bowers & Pitsea, Worthing, Horsham and Bishop’s Stortford before the Dartford tie and league points will be a priority.

BROMLEY, GREATER LONDON, ENGLAND – NOVEMBER 24: Cray Wanderers’s Sam Skeffington, on loan from Bromley, runs at Folkestone Invicta’s Alfie Paxman during the The Pitching In Isthmian Premier League match between Cray Wanderers and Folkestone Invicta at Hayes Lane on November 24, 2021 in Bromley, Greater London, England . (Photo: © Jon Hilliger / HilligerPix)

This has already been a history making start to the season for Bowers & Pitsea as Rob Small’s side made national headlines by reaching the 1st Round of the FA Cup and earlier this month were beaten narrowly at League One Lincoln City after beating Arlesey Town, Bishop Stortford, Horchurch and Aldershot Town to advance to the 1st Round. After a slow start to the season with one point from their first four games form picked up and at home Bowers & Pitsea beat Wingate & Finchley (3-1), Horsham (1-0) and Haringey Borough (2-1), picking up a point from a 0-0 draw with Bognor Regis Town. They lost to Leatherhead (2-3), East Thurrock United (1-2), Kingstonian (0-1) and Corinthian Casuals (1-2). Their last league game on Tuesday 23rd November was a 0-2 defeat at Potters Bar Town. Bowers & PItsea won at Brightlingsea (3-2) and drew at Bishops Stortford and Carshalton Athletic, losing at Worthing, Merstham, and Potters Bar Town. Bowers & Pitsea were beaten at Farnborough Town in the FA Trophy 3QR. Top scorer so far is Lewis Manor with 10 goals including hat-tricks on successive Saturday’s in September.
The sides met for the first time in the Isthmian Premier in the 2019-20 season and Cray won both matches, 3-1 at Hayes Lane in October 2019 and 2-1 on 11th January, 2020 at Bowers, 2-1 coming from behind to win with goals from Joe Taylor and Rhys Murrell-Williamson. Bowers though settled well in their first season in the division and were 14th when the season ended in March and comfortably clear of any relegation trouble. Last season they were 13th when the season ended early but had only played five league games.
As a club Bowers & Pitsea are relatively young only formed in 2003. Originally formed in 1946 as Bowers United, the Essex club played in regional leagues before joining the Essex Olympian League in 1966 and later the Essex Senior in 1974 winning the league in 1980-81 (the same year Cray Wanderers won the Kent League) and the league and Challenge cup double in 1998-99.
In 2004, Bowers United joined up with Pitsea Football Club, who were a Sunday league side during the 1990’s. In 2015-16 Bowers & Pitsea won the Essex Senior League earning promotion to the Isthmian North and also reached the Semi Final of the FA Vase losing to eventual winners Morpeth 4-3 on aggregate. They missed out on meeting Cray Wanderers as the Wands were relocated to the Isthmian South for 2016-17. They settled in nicely to the Isthmian North and in 2017-18 reached the playoffs after finishing 3rd and were beaten at home by Canvey Island in the Semi Final. However, in 2018-19 they were not to be denied and won the Isthmian North with 92 points and won the title by 12 points from Aveley to reach the Isthmian Premier for the first time before lying 14th in the their inaugural season.
Both sides who have enjoyed cup tie success this season will now just be looking to put more league points on the board. As you may have noticed things are getting much colder so please wrap up warm if heading to Pitsea for the game.


Bowers & Pitsea FC

Len Salmon Stadium, Crown Avenue, Pitsea, Essex SS13 2BE

Admission Prices

£12 adults, £6 OAP’s/students with card, £3 16-12 year olds, U12s free with adult  

Tickets can be purchased online at or cash/card payment at the gate.


Coming from London / M25
Head towards either A13 or A127

From A13
Take the turn off for Pitsea.

At the roundabout take the first exit so that you pass Tesco’s on your left. At the next roundabout take the third exit (Ashlyns)

Go straight at the next roundabout (approx. 20 metres). Follow the road until the next roundabout and take the second exit and then take the first left into Kenneth Road.

Follow the road to the end and turn right and then immediate left into the grounds.

Visitors car park is at far end of clubhouse building.

Access to clubhouse via pathway between clubhouse and football pitch then side door beside patio area.


Take the Canvey Island turn off and follow road to join A13 then follow above.

Coming from A127

Take the Wickford turn off and take the third exit at roundabout.

Follow road going straight over two roundabouts

At third roundabout turn left (Ashlyns) then follow above

If the carpark is full, there is extra parking in the Eversley centre. This is located in Crest Avenue and if you follow the pathway through the end of the carpark into Crown Avenue that leads into the ground entrance.

Nearest station:  Pitsea

Trains go from London Fenchurch Street or perhaps easier to get to West Ham and there are eight trains an hour for services heading to Shoeburyness.  Returns are 21:59, 22:21, 22:29 and 22:51 with the last train at 23:51 back to either West Ham or Fenchurch Street.  Please check trains before travelling.

The ground is around 1.3 miles from the station and will take just shy of half an hour to walk it. The quickest way is on leaving the station walk west on Station Approach towards and then a right onto Pitsea Hall Lane for 0.1 miles.  At the roundabout take the 1st exit onto Broadway Link/B1464 again for 0.1 mile. At the next roundabout take the 1st exit onto High Road/B1464 for 0.2 miles. At the next roundabout take the 1st exit onto Rectory Road for 0.3 miles. Then turn right onto Delhi Road for 0.3 miles and then turn right onto Crest Avenue and then a left onto Manor Avenue for 0.1 mile. This is followed by a right towards and onto Cobden Walk and then a left onto Crown Avenue for the ground.

If you are looking for a pre-match drink in Pitsea then the social club at the ground is really excellent and as the ground is a little way from the station might be a better bet particularly as the first time we have played at the Len Salmon Stadium midweek.  If you’ve time to spend around Pitsea then The Gun Pub on London Road might be what you are looking for.  If you like seafood then Winkles Seafood stall is located at the Great Chalvedon Hall Public House and is in Rectory Road but perhaps still a bit under a mile to the ground.