It has been a long wait for football for Falmouth Town and their supporters: their last weekend home fixture at Bickland Park was at home to Launceston on October 17.

The remainder of that season was made null and void but Town have now begun preparations for next season which begins on Friday August 6 away to local rivals Wendron.

Speaking with the Packet, manager Andrew Westgarth is looking forward to getting back into action, he said: "I can't wait I think It'll be great I think with our supporters you can see the excitement is building hopefully with a good season this year things should go well I am really looking forward to it.

"The facilities at Wendron are fantastic the pitch is a really good surface and we played there two years ago on boxing day and it was a challenge. Hopefully being first day of the season we shouldn't have any problems.

"We should get a decent crowd from our fans but also from some of the teams that aren't playing on that night also."

Falmouth Packet: Town celebrate in front of the Packet EndTown celebrate in front of the Packet End

The South West Peninsula League (SWPL) has been made null and void for two successive seasons due to the covid 19 pandemic and Westgarth is hoping that this season Town can challenge at the top of the table: "Every year you want to better how you have done before and I think since I've taken over we have got better. 

"With teams leaving people are going to have their own opinions on the strength of the league but I suppose automatically pushed us up into the top part of the table in the sense that for default classed as top four at lest but that's just because of where we have finished over the last few seasons.

"It is a great opportunity for the lads it is not often you start a season and can genuinely think you have a very good chance of competing or doing well. Our strength been built has been the consistency in the squad and management we have all been together for a long time. We haven't had to add a lot of players but the players we have got have added quality. It is key that we get off to a good start and crack on from there." Said Westgarth.

Penryn Athletic will join Falmouth in the SWPL for the first time in the sides" history, Westgarth is looking forward to encounters against them. He said: "We haven't been in same league as Penryn since 2005 so to have them back in it's good. For the football purists, Falmouth Truro would probably be looked on as the derby but from a real local point of view Falmouth Penryn couldn't be any more local if you tried. We have got a Penryn connection, four or five of their players moved across a few years ago so they will be looking forward to the game as much as everyone else.

Town are widely regarded one of the most followed sides in Cornwall, the fans known as 'The F Troop' create a great atmosphere at the unique stadium. Westgarth is looking forward to playing with their vocal backing when football returns. He said: "The are fans are brilliant, if anyone has been to Bickland Park they know the experience of watching Falmouth Town, not only on the pitch but off the pitch the fans bring so much noise and so much colour to the games and I can't wait to see them. The ground has had a bit of TLC a bit of an overhaul so I'm sure they're chomping at the bit to get back as much as we are."

Falmouth Packet: Celebrations at Falmouth TownCelebrations at Falmouth Town

Jeff Chambers Falmouth Town ultrafan like the rest of the club is eager for the return of  football to Bickland Park, he has issued a rallying call to the community go get behind the club this season, he said: “Come and join the F troop we can all support Manchester United, but there is nothing like standing in the Packet End with new friends and friends that you have stood there with for years. 

“We all want to make some noise and support that team the way they have never been supported before. I am sure I speak for a lot of other people, it’s not just about the football. Bringing the community together is what matters, what we are creating at Falmouth is unique. There is no ground like Bickland Park.” Said Chambers. 

The coronavirus pandemic has caused a lot of uncertainty for many clubs across the country but Chambers feels like now is the perfect time to support the club, and he was quick to credit the manager and the staff for all the work that has been put into the club. He said: “There is no non league club like Falmouth. Bickland Park is like Cornwall’s Wembley. The old lady of Falmouth Town is now awakening, we have been threatened with bankruptcy, closure, losing the ground but we have now been rejuvenated since appointing Westy (Andrew Westgarth) as manager a young vibrant local boy as well asthe chairman Graham Medlin.

 “You are now seeing the club out of debt. In the last few years there has been 40-50 thousand pounds spent on the clubhouse with a new roof and paint job. A new roof on the grandstand, as well as new floodlights. The Packet End has also been extended and renovated.” added Chambers.

Town begin their SWPL season on Friday August 6 away to Wendron. The side have six pre season games planned in advance of that starting away at Hayle on July 10. The standout game of the pre season will be at home to Truro on July 17.