Honiton Town - Division Two to Premier Champions in four seasons!

Honiton at home were held to a one all draw against Elmore. Ref mhsp 16-17TI 1013. picture: Terry If

Honiton at home were held to a one all draw against Elmore. Ref mhsp 16-17TI 1013. picture: Terry Ife - Credit: Archant

Honiton Town’s terrific Macron Devon and Exeter League success is still bubbling away and it’s perhaps worth taking a closer look at their achievement of going from Division Two to Premier champions in four seasons.

The run began on Saturday, August 26, 2013 when the Hippos travelled to Topsham Town to launch a new Devon and Exeter League Division Two0 season. The game ended 1-1, and the Hippos’ went on that year to finish as runners-up to champions Dolphin.

One most noteworthy point of that campaign though, is that the Hippo’s did the league double over Dolphin, defeating them at Mountbatten park and in Exeter. That season Town scored 111 goals, conceded 44 and won 22 of their 32 matches in league and cup, drawing five and losing just five and the only games they lost away from home was a 4-2 reversal at Newton St Cyres – they also saw two league games at home – against Newton St Cyres (3-1) and Westexe (0-4) and also lost a Devon Senior Cup tie, beaten 7-1 at Dartmouth. The only other defeat that term was a Seaton Cup 2-0 loss to Beer Albion.

In the 2014/15 season, they played for the first time in Division One and they won the title suffering just three league defeats on the way, going down 2-1 at Exwick Villa, 1-0 at Exmouth Amateurs and 3-1 in their only league home defeat that season – beaten again by Exwick Villa.

That season Kev Blackwell’s men also won the Seaton Cup. In all they played 31 league and cup matches, won 25 of them and drew just two, 0-0 at home to Wellington and 4-4 at Witheridge Reserves.

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Back-to-back promotions catapulted them into the top tier of the Devon and Exeter League, now known as the Macron Devon and Exeter League and, in their first season of top level football they finished an impressive third losing just four league games with their only defeats away from Mountbatten Park being losses at Hatherleigh and Newtown.

And so to this title winning 2016/17 season! It all began, just as the season three years before had, with a trip to Topsham Town, though this time it was to meet the home club’s first team and the game ended, as the one had previously, all square at 1-1.

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When the campaign ended, the Hippos had played 28 league matches, winning 21 of them, drawing six and losing just one – that a 4-1 defeat at home to title rivals Newtown which came on April 18 and took place just seven days after the Hippos had beaten the same team 4-0 on their own ground!

That all means that since the 1-1 Division Two draw at Topsham Town at the start of the 2013/14 season, Honiton Town went on to play 124 league and cup ties, winning 87 of them, drawing 18 and losing 18.

In all they scored 411 goals and conceded 146.

Honiton Town – truly a champion club.

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