From August 2023, the current Western League and South West Peninsula League will merge to form one new competition covering the region from Bristol to Land’s End.

The merger has been in the pipeline for the past two years with much work going on in the background, but with the start approaching the steering group want to explain the likely changes.

First the new name – the Western Peninsula League, ensures both previous leagues and clubs are part of the new entity, likewise the first officials of the league will be those who have served the previous two leagues so well.

The objective of the merger is to reduce travel and increase sustainability for regional football at Step 5 and 6 while maintaining a competitive and exciting competition for supporters and participants alike.

We have come up with a five division set-up to achieve this:

  • TWO Step 5 Divisions, “Premier North” and “Premier South” – These will have 18 clubs in each and although the exact clubs allocated to each will depend on final league tables, the “North” will be mainly Bristol, Gloucestershire and Somerset with the “South” mainly Devon and Cornwall. Both champions will be able to progress to Step 4 (though exact route is governed by The FA). Clubs finishing in the bottom Two will be liable to relegation to…
  • THREE Step 6 Divisions – Division One “East” (covering most of the current Western League Div One area), “Central” (largely where SW Peninsula East sits) and “West” (what is currently SW Peninsula West). These will aim to have 18 clubs in each but to reduce affect on feeder leagues it may be necessary to start with divisions of 16. The champions of each will be able to be promoted, with play-offs below that for additional spaces.

The new league will also take over the running of league cups, benevolent funds, social media accounts etc.

On March 16th, a formal “launch” will take place at Sandy Park, Home of Exeter Chiefs.

More news will follow to all those interested!