Defunct footy clubs in Melbourne

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MortlockWatcher

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Kew was VFL Sub-District. In 1948, the clubs were Abbotsford, East Brunswick, Fairfield, Kew, Richmond District, Richmond United and South Melbourne Districts (only two of those are still active).

The VFA Sub-Districts in 1947 were Beau Monde, Coburg Rangers, Fairfield, Graham United, Holeproof, Parkside, Sandringham Thirds and West Coburg. B Grade were primarily VFA Thirds teams (The VFA Sub-Districts B Grade competition actually became the VFA Thirds in 1953).

The VFL sub-district comp seemed to struggle badly after WWII - the media inference was poor administration and player behaviour issues. It seemed to have been taken over by the VFL administration and re-badged/overhauled.

The media in 1950 referred to the fact that the VFA was winning the battle of sub-district football and that the Metropolitan league was a backward step.

The sub-districts concept (like for cricket) was for clubs in outer areas to be involved as a second tier to the VFL and VFA clubs (without officially being second division clubs) and act as feeder clubs and once they became stronger could get promoted to the higher level (not so much in the case of the VFL).

Both leagues got good publicity in the newspapers, with scores and goalkickers each Monday through most of the 1920s and 1930s, despite the VFL, VFA, VFL Reserves and VFA Reserves (VJFA until 1928) being regarded as higher on the pyramid. They also got their umpire appointments published mid week and occasional stories/articles.

In the end, the VFA subbies folded in March 1954 - the MFL ended in 1974.

VFL Sub-Districts
(played through WWII)
1944 - 5
1945 - 6
1946 - 9
1947 - 8
1948 - 7
1949 - 7

Metropolitan FL
1950 - 8

VFA Sub-Districts
(for some reason called the VFA Thirds in 1940-41)
1940 - 11
1941 - 8
1942-44 was suspended due to WWII (only the VFA 2nds in 1944 - no 1sts or Sub-Districts)
1945 ?
1946 - 5/5
1947 - 8/8
1948 and 1949? - seems to be a link to the Industral league (mention of a C Division, D Division and Industrial Division but no A or B?)
1950 - 9/8/6
 
Last edited:

Connor7395

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May 23, 2010
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The VFL sub-district comp seemed to struggle badly after WWII - the media inference was poor administration and player behaviour issues. It seemed to have been taken over by the VFL administration and re-badged/overhauled.

The media in 1950 referred to the fact that the VFA was winning the battle of sub-district football and that the Metropolitan league was a backward step.

The sub-districts concept (like for cricket) was for clubs in outer areas to be involved as a second tier to the VFL and VFA clubs (without officially being second division clubs) and act as feeder clubs and once they became stronger could get promoted to the higher level (not so much in the case of the VFL).

Both leagues got good publicity in the newspapers, with scores and goalkickers each Monday through most of the 1920s and 1930s, despite the VFL, VFA, VFL Reserves and VFA Reserves (VJFA until 1928) being regarded as higher on the pyramid. They also got their umpire appointments published mid week and occasional stories/articles.

In the end, the VFA subbies folded in March 1954 - the MFL ended in 1970.

VFL Sub-Districts
(played through WWII)
1944 - 5
1945 - 6
1946 - 9
1947 - 8
1948 - 7
1949 - 7

Metropolitan FL
1950 - 8

VFA Sub-Districts
(for some reason called the VFA Thirds in 1940-41)
1940 - 11
1941 - 8
1942-44 was suspended due to WWII (only the VFA 2nds in 1944 - no 1sts or Sub-Districts)
1945 ?
1946 - 5/5
1947 - 8/8
1948 and 1949? - seems to be a link to the Industral league (mention of a C Division, D Division and Industrial Division but no A or B?)
1950 - 9/8/6
1949's VFASDFA mentions A-E Grades in The Age (Sep 24, 1949).

Clubs included (Trove):
A Grade: Bell Rovers, West Coburg (premiers), Merlynston (runners-up), Port Melbourne Districts
B Grade: Port Melbourne United, Port 3rds (premiers, 69th or 59th consecutive win, 4th consecutive premiership), Prahran 3rds, Camberwell 3rds
C Grade (Industrial): Kodak (premiers), Commonwealth Industrial Gases, Malcolm Moore, John Danks, Eagley
D Grade: Sandringham Colts, Port Melbourne United Juniors (premiers), Yarraville Juniors, Brighton 4ths
E Grade: Port Melbourne Colts, Prahran 5ths (premiers), Oakleigh Colts, City Newsboys, Prahran Colts

1949 Grand Finals:
A Grade: West Coburg 20.11.131 def. Merlynston 13.13.91
B Grade: Port Thirds 9.11.65 def. Port Melbourne United 7.6.48
C Grade (Industrial): Kodak def. Commonwealth Industrial Gases
D Grade: Port Melbourne United Juniors 7.13.55 def. Brighton 4ths 8.6.54
E Grade: Prahran 5ths def. ??? (probably Port Melbourne Colts)

If C Grade represents the Industrial Section, then Malcolm Moore, John Danks and CIG were the semi-finalists with Kodak.

Other clubs that were mentioned in the Sporting Globe (under Assoc. Sub-Dist. in scores): Camberwell, Williamstown, Yarraville (Juniors?), Coburg, Brunswick, Sandringham (Colts?)
 

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MortlockWatcher

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Thanks for that, you're a legend.

That will give me a chance to Trove as many of these clubs to try and find a full list.

Now all I need is 1948 for that comp.
 

MortlockWatcher

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A question for the older folk here … did the Metropolitan Football League issue a Football Record each week or for finals matches?

If so, what was it called if it wasn't a Record?
 

MortlockWatcher

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Recall Bellfield played in the old Metroplitan Football League for several years in the mid 70s'. Watched several of that comp's Grand Finals. Competed against Port Mellbourne Colts, Broadmeadows, Dallas Blues and Cooloaroo amongst others. They were 'colorful' games of footy. The MFL may have been a forerunner to the PDJFL senior comp and then later the Melbourne North FL.
It's a very long timeline ...
Melbourne District Association (1906-1915, 1919-24)
renamed ...
VFL Sub-District Association (1925-1949)
renamed ...
Metropolitan Football League (1950-1974)
renamed ...
Northern Metropolitan Football League (1975-1979)

timeline breaks - Fitzroy Stars (went to YCWNFA?), Batman became Coburg Districts in 1981 and went to the FDFL and now are in the EDFL, Princes Hill went to the VAFA, Jacana (YCW then EDFL?), Collingwood Districts (ESCFA), Merlynston folded soon after, East Brunswick went to the FDFL?, St. Andrews ? , Dallas Blues went to YCW, West Brunswick (VAFA?), Bellfield to ESCFA, Broadmeadows (YCW?), Preston Wanderers ? and RMIT ?

Panton Hill FL folded after 1987

Melbourne North Football League formed in 1989 (1989-1994)

Fitzroy Stars eventually to DVFL/NFL.
 

MortlockWatcher

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Saturday Morning League (changed name from Saturday Morning Industrial FL around 1935):
Saturday Morning Industrial League (co-existed with SML, only have 1948-1949, 1949 might be incomplete):
It seemed to be:
Industrial FL (1927)
Saturday Morning Industrial FL (1928-1934)
Saturday Morning FL (1935-1941; 1946-1960)

I need to do some more research into the 1948-1949 situation - my first impression is that the VFA Sub-District comp had an industrial division. The VFL and VFA were having some awful squabbles with each other just after WWI, with yet more merger talks falling through (the stumbling block was over automatic relegation or a VFL wooden-spooner versus VFA premiers play-off for the 12th VFL spot).

You should see some of the sh*t in the press in the 20s and 30s about the different failed concepts for a merged VFL/VFA.
 

Connor7395

Independent
May 23, 2010
431
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It seemed to be:
Industrial FL (1927)
Saturday Morning Industrial FL (1928-1934)
Saturday Morning FL (1935-1941; 1946-1960)

I need to do some more research into the 1948-1949 situation - my first impression is that the VFA Sub-District comp had an industrial division. The VFL and VFA were having some awful squabbles with each other just after WWI, with yet more merger talks falling through (the stumbling block was over automatic relegation or a VFL wooden-spooner versus VFA premiers play-off for the 12th VFL spot).

You should see some of the sh*t in the press in the 20s and 30s about the different failed concepts for a merged VFL/VFA.
This is probably the right answer. The clubs I found for the SMIFL in 1949 match the ones I found for the VFA Sub-District C Grade.
Why the VFA Sub-Districts had an industrial club only division plum in the middle of the divisions, I can't figure out.
 

Mobbs

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In 1951 for VFA Sub-Districts there were references to a "4ths" but I dunno if it was even open-age.

My head just explodes with this stuff. Half the time I think I know something about the Saturday leagues and then I realise I'm thinking about Sunday leagues ... seriously need a tardis.
 

Joe Mama

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It's a very long timeline ...
Melbourne District Association (1906-1915, 1919-24)
renamed ...
VFL Sub-District Association (1925-1949)
renamed ...
Metropolitan Football League (1950-1974)
renamed ...
Northern Metropolitan Football League (1975-1979)

timeline breaks - Fitzroy Stars (went to YCWNFA?), Batman became Coburg Districts in 1981 and went to the FDFL and now are in the EDFL, Princes Hill went to the VAFA, Jacana (YCW then EDFL?), Collingwood Districts (ESCFA), Merlynston folded soon after, East Brunswick went to the FDFL?, St. Andrews ? , Dallas Blues went to YCW, West Brunswick (VAFA?), Bellfield to ESCFA, Broadmeadows (YCW?), Preston Wanderers ? and RMIT ?

Panton Hill FL folded after 1987

Melbourne North Football League formed in 1989 (1989-1994)

Fitzroy Stars eventually to DVFL/NFL.
Reservoir (who wore Red with a white Yoke) ended up in the Metropolitan League in 1950 after dominating in the Diamond Valley Football League, the players who wanted to stay in the DVFL formed Lakeside Rovers (later Reservoir Lakeside, who wore South Melbourne colours) who remained in the DVFL until 1997,when they were taken over by West Preston.

Reservoir stayed in the MFL until 1971, when they moved to the Panton Hill Football League, then they moved back to the DVFL in 1981, where they changed their colours to Royal Blue with Sky Blue collar & cuffs.

St Andrews/Coburg ended up in the DVFL in the mid 90's for a while until they folded.
 

MortlockWatcher

All Australian
Dec 18, 2013
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In 1951 for VFA Sub-Districts there were references to a "4ths" but I dunno if it was even open-age.

My head just explodes with this stuff. Half the time I think I know something about the Saturday leagues and then I realise I'm thinking about Sunday leagues ... seriously need a tardis.
Marc Fiddian refers to the VFA Thirds starting around 1953 (a number of the VFA clubs had a Thirds side playing in the VFA Sub-District 'B' Division in the late 1940s and early 1950s and these teams shifted from the control of the Sub-District comp to the VFA). However, the other day I was stunned to see a reference to a VFA Thirds in 1928 in the Argus, Age and Herald.

It turned out that the Melbourne and Suburbs FA applied to the VFA to become affiliated with them and play as their Thirds competition soon after the season had started (adding credence that the VJFA had changed their name to the Association Seconds early in 1928). In June, the MSFA became known as the VFA Thirds competition in the press and just four weeks later were re-named as the VFA Sub-District League … three different names inside six weeks - no wonder Mobbs' head hurts!
 

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MortlockWatcher

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Very! Interesting qualification on the date of one of them, at the bottom. Most likely maybe just an off weekend ... or maybe a complete rejig midseason?
Page 1 attached had a review of a thumping win for the VFA Subbies against the Mountain District competition which involved matches by an open age team and a junior team. It seems that the Under 20's grade were the only grade that played on interleague weekend.
 

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Mobbs

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Page 1 had a review of a thumping win for the VFA Subbies against the Mountain District competition which involved matches by an open age team and a junior team. It seems that the Under 20's were the only grade that played on interleague weekend (I assume that the junior rep game was Under 19 or Under 18).
Nice! Thanks.
 

Tattsy4

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Jul 7, 2020
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I will add any more that I or anyone else adds in bold to distinguish from the 1960 list.

I will go through some old ESCFA and SESFL Records from the 1980s, which should add another 15-20!
A couple from the Broadmeadows are.
St Dominics were in the old Metro league till about 1984.
Upfield were also in the same comp.
 

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