Progress for King’s Lynn Town as Hawes’ reserves join Thurlow Nunn League

King's Lynn Town manager Gary Setchell. Picture: Ian Burt

King's Lynn Town manager Gary Setchell. Picture: Ian Burt - Credit: IAN BURT

Gary Setchell's plans to keep moving King's Lynn Town forward received a massive boost at the weekend – thanks to the Thurlow Nunn League.

The Eastern Counties set-up, which is positioned at Step Five and Six of the non-league ladder, accepted the Linnets' reserves into its lower-level First Division.

And it means the club's talented youngsters will be able to pit their wits against some of the best semi-professional sides in their local area as they look to develop their fledgling careers at a standard that is just three levels below Setchell's first team.

Having won four successive titles on the bounce, boss Jonathan Hawes' charges will now face clubs like Swaffham Town and Downham Town in derbies which should light up the part-time scene in the west of the county.

Had Fakenham Town not have been promoted to the Premier Division, there would have been even more cracking matches in West Norfolk during the 2014/15 campaign.

As it is, Lynn's reserve team will bring some excellent facilities and a financial boost to the rest of the second-tier outfits. Town's team – which last season contained hot prospect Shaun Stocker – often attract crowds of roughly 200. And with short distances for away games expected – while the first team will still be travelling hundreds of miles to compete in the Evo-Stik Premier Division – other teams in the division will expect to have their coffers boosted by the Linnets' presence.

Defender Chris Ward should be able to play in the league after clubs approved three contracted under-21 players to be named in teams' matchday squads.

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Also new to the division are Leiston Reserves whilst Woodbridge Town arrive having been relegated from the Premier Division. Progressive outfit Dereham Town will once again field a second-string in the First Division for the forthcoming season.

One team who have held onto their top-flight status – despite ending in the bottom three and seemingly being destined for the drop –is Diss Town.

Mike Derbyshire's men received a relegation reprieve and they will continue in the top flight next term looking to bring back some brighter times to Brewers Green Lane.