Folkestone Invicta vs Cray Wanderers – Isthmian Premier – Tuesday 6th February – 7.45 pm – Match Preview

Cray Wanderers look to build on three successive wins on Tuesday night as Neil Smith’s side head to Folkestone Invicta in a match between sides 16th and 15th in the Isthmian Premier League table.

Cray and Folkestone have 31 points although the Wands have played two games less and both had impressive away wins on Saturday with Cray winning at Carshalton and Folkestone at Billericay Town.

The Wands produced a fine performance to win at 7th placed Carshalton and made it successive league doubles after victory against Wingate & Finchley on 27th January. Ellis Brown scored a well taken brace at Carshalton taking his goal tally to the season to seven while defensively the resolute back four of David Ijaha, Tom Bonner, Emmanuel Kwatchey and Sam Wood restricted the home side to few chances and Shaun Rowley was immaculate in goal. The midfield of Alfie Evans, Tom Beere and Frankie Raymond were excellent and Gary Lockyer and Yahya Bamba were a constant threat. 

Folkestone Invicta after a bright start to the season find themselves in 15th place with former Wand Andy Drury at the helm after taking over in November.  On Saturday Folkestone won 2-1 at Billericay with goals from David Smith and Kane Penn before the home side pulled a goal back in added time.

Last season Folkestone finished 12th and Cray were 4-2 winners at Folkestone on 14th September 2022 with goals from Derry, Sinn’kaye Christie, Sam Wood and Dan Bassett and it finished 0-0 at Hayes Lane on 14th February 2023.

So far at home Folkestone have beaten Margate (2-0), Cheshunt (2-1), Billericay Town (1-0) and drawn with Whitehawk (1-1), Haringey Borough (1-1), Wingate & Finchley (1-1) and Carshalton Athletic (3-3). Invicta were beaten by Chatham Town (2-3), Enfield Town (1-2), Bognor Regis Town (0-1), Hastings United (0-5), Hashtag United (1-3) and Hornchurch (0-2). Away from home, Folkestone won at Wingate & Finchley (4-0), Lewes (3-1), Margate (2-0), Enfield Town (2-0) and Billericay Town (2-1), drew at Hashtag United, Potters Bar Town and Haringey Borough and were beaten at Concord Rangers, Kingstonian, Hornchurch, Carshalton Athletic, Dulwich Hamlet, Horsham and Canvey Island. Top scorers so far are David Smith, Ira Jackson and Ibrahim Olutade with eight goals whilst ex-Wand Tom Derry has five goals since joining in December.

The game is being played at the third time of asking after two previous postponements and both teams will be keen to continue to move up the table and is usually an entertaining game under the lights. 

Admission £12/£9/£3



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 or Sevenoaks 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.