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Scottish Non-League Programme of the Year 2015-16 - RESULTS

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An increase of three on last years entry saw 45 clubs enter this seasons Scottish Non-League Programme of the Year award. Last years winner, East Region Junior club Luncarty from Perthshire, sadly had to withdraw from the league for season 2015-16 (they will return next season), and inaugural winners Buckie Thistle from the Highland League (who also finished third last season) saw editor Easton Thain move out of the area and with nobody to fill the gap, programme production ceased.


So this seasons competition was wide open to another new winner and it was the Lowland League that stepped upto the mark with three exceptionally strong entries with the Highland League also producing another couple of contenders. It was exceptionally difficult to separate the top four, every one of them has improved over last season and could have claimed the title with strong issues in slightly different ways, but someone needs to win, and that someone was……



Gala Fairydean Rovers, Lowland League, 32 pages, £2.00

The Dean had come close last season finishing runners-up to Luncarty. This season continues in the full colour format and has added four pages for the same price from last season and clearly a lot of thought has gone into improving the content. It’s a polished, professional production with a good balance of articles, stats and pics with not much space filling and adverts kept to a minimum. It would not look out of place as an SPFL issue and just edges out its competitors by the narrowest of margins to claim this seasons award.


Runner Up

Edinburgh City, Lowland League, 40 pages, £2.00

The Citizen has been a top quality production for a number of years now and this season was no different. Although keeping to the black & white format, the programme benefits from a thoughtful design and print quality is as good as you can achieve with this format. Content is very strong, you can tell a lot of effort goes into every single page. The opinion pieces are enjoyable reading, the statistics are all l there but not overwhelming, and they also record attendances which is a rarity in non-league programmes north of the border. An exceptional issue again which will perform well in the League Two awards next season!


Joint Third Place

Whitehill Welfare, Lowland League, 60 pages, £2.00

The cover price may have doubled from last season, but Welfare have also added an extra 20 pages to cram in even more content. Like the City issue it keeps to the black & white format, but you don’t really notice as you trawl your way through a wealth of stats, news, and other bits and pieces that would require three half times to fully appreciate. A cracking issue and clearly a labour of love, which makes visits to Ferguson Park ones to look forward to.


Fraserburgh, Highland League, 32 pages, £2.00

The Broch is very much an issue that flies under the radar but is one which has ranked highly the previous two seasons and this year is no different. Like the top three it does not lack for content and this season saw the introduction of a double page review of a past season which is a quality read. Full colour throughout it delves in-depth into that days visitors and other HL matters, and is excellent value for money.


Best of the Rest

This season’s Ardeer Thistle’s “Red & Black†issue has once again claimed the crown of best Junior programme which they last achieved two seasons ago. Nicely designed and illustrated, and mostly colour throughout, it’s  a good read at a good price. Formartine United once again feature highly with a programme that looks the part with a nice clean layout inside, runner-up in the Highland League.  Clydebank’s programme is a familiar format to last season and has the same mix of interesting features, just needs to beef out its match reports a little in order to challenge higher up. Lowland League Spartans are one of the most improved programmes this season with greatly improved in quality to match the full colour format. Penicuiks Athletic’s The Rookie Cuikie is a hard one to judge, it’s a weighty tome and is dominated by adverts, however actual content is well written and illustrated and well worth your £1.50. Auchinleck Talbot and their The Black & Gold Review hasn’t changed much over the last few years, and that’s a good thing as they have a format that works for them and plenty good reading.


Special mention to Blairgowrie who produce a lovely 16 pager packed with info available for a donation, or free if you’re so inclined, and Leith Athletic who’s issue is given away free with entry or £1 for extra issues.  Initiatives that other non-issuing clubs could follow.


As I say every year, there are no losers in the competition, sadly less than a third of semi-pro non-league clubs in Scotland issue every home game so credit to all editors who go to the effort of producing a regular programme, a sometimes thankless task.  Here’s hoping that this award, which is afterall a bit of fun, goes some way towards encouraging other clubs to give it a go.



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