Results and teams, 1950-67

On the left are links to the Excel pages giving results and lineups for 1950/1 to 1966/7. Clicking on the relevant link takes you to the page for that season which will open in Ms Excel, but you might need to use the link to Google Sheets at the top of each page for best results. The pages will also make more sense if you scroll down to read the notes below first.

You can also see a commentary on each season under Commentary season by season, 1950-67, and photographic highlights under Season by Season in photos, 1950-67.


Key to line-ups

For each match the opponents are shown in upright type, eg YEOVIL TOWN, for home matches and italics, eg YEOVIL TOWN, for away matches.

The competition (see below) and attendance, where known, are shown to the left of the opposition name. Attendances have been taken from press reports where recorded, but especially in the earlier years many of the figures appear to be estimates. Where the press report described the crowd as “more than” or “just under” a ball-park figure, I have shown this with a + or – sign, eg “6,000+” will be a crowd reported as “over 6,000”. Recently (March 2013) Martin Goatley has kindly supplied some more precise attendance figures from old club handbooks which have replaced some of the previous estimates. In the mid-50s, Bedford tended to quote home attendances “excluding season ticket holders”, which could mean that the figures are understated by several hundred.

The teams are then set out in shirt number order, 1 to 11, with Bedford in bold and the opposition in unbold. Substitutes only featured in 1966/7 (only one per match and only to replace an injured player), and where known these are shown under number 12; if they are known to have been used, the player replaced is asterisked, but there may be some missed appearances here. All the line-ups have been verified from contemporary newspaper reports, with the exception of just two matches: the Southern League home match v Tonbridge at the end of 1951/2 and the Eastern Professional Floodlit Competition match at Barnet at the end of 1966/7. In a few cases it was only possible to find the line-up that was scheduled to play, and not the actual eleven that played-this is denoted by Sched to the left of the names.

In a few cases where players of the same name played for both sides and scored, a distinguishing letter has been added in brackets after the names to avoid confusion.

Where press accounts disagree on a team line-up or goalscorer, I have taken the “home” version as definitive, i.e. the Bedford press if it involved a Bedford player and the “away” press for opposing players, but the discrepancy is noted in the right hand margin.

Under the line-ups, in italics, are set out, in the following order, Bedford scorers; opposition scorers. Referee [where known]. Scorers are given in the order in which the goals were scored if this is known. In the earlier years especially, the referee's name is often unknown: they were seldom named in press reports in the early 50s, even where the match involved controversial decisions. Some of these gaps have been filled from programmes. In a few cases initials and/or home towns of referees are unknown.


These pages cover every competitive first team fixture in the season in question-which means every fixture except friendlies (although these are also briefly listed at the end of the fixtures). Thus, I’ve included the following, abbreviated as shown:

Southern League (SL)-this was the competition in which the club played throughout the “Best Years”. Up to 1957/8 there was just a single division; in 1958/9 Bedford were in the South Eastern division; and from 1959/60, the Premier Division.

Southern League Cup (SLC)-the preliminary or first round ties were played on a home and away basis, so the two legs are shown as “SLC(1)1 leg” and “SLC(1)(2 leg)”. Between 1951/2 and 1962/3 inclusive, a mini-league table was compiled after the preliminary round and the clubs in the top half of this qualified for the next round. This could mean that opponents played in the earliest round could be met again in a later round, as happened with Guildford in 1957/8. From 1963/4 onwards, a simple aggregate goals basis was used to decide the preliminary round. Later rounds are shown as “SLC(2)”, “SLC(3)”, etc. Replays are denoted by “R”.

The FA Cup-the rounds are abbreviated “FAC(1P)” or "FAC(1Q)", etc, for the preliminary and qualifying rounds, and FAC(1) etc for the competition proper. Replays are denoted by “R”, second replays by “2R”, etc.

The Southern League Inter-Zone Competition (SLIZ), which was only played in 1958/9 (see 1958/9 Summary for more details).

County Cups-all the rounds of these are included, because the final stages were often very well attended, even though in some years Bedford played virtually a reserve team in some of the early rounds. The following are included-

The Bedfordshire Invitation Cup (BIC) up to 1954/5, and its successor the Bedfordshire Professional Cup (BPC). Unlike the other county cups, in the event of a draw after 90 minutes the trophy was shared-there was no extra time or replays.

The Huntingdonshire Premier Cup (HPC), which the club entered most seasons as guests. The history of this competition is rather confused and notes appear under the relevant season.

The East Anglian Cup (EAC), a bigger competition which was entered from 1956/7 to 1960/1.

The Cambridgeshire Professional Cup (CPC), entered as guests in 1966/7 and 1967/8 only.

The Culey Victory Cup (CVC), a charity competition organised by King’s Lynn in which Bedford were guests in 1959/60 and 1960/1 only.

(SF denotes semi-final and F final)

Floodlit Leagues-

The Midland Floodlit Competition (MFC) in 1961/2. Several similar competitions started around this period, in the hope of attracting a new audience for mid-week matches, and Bedford joined when their new lights were installed in 1961, but attendances tended to dwindle as spectators found that weakened teams were often fielded. Bedford resigned at the end of the season and did not take part in this type of competition again until they joined the very similar EPFC in 1965.

The Eastern Professional Floodlit Competition (EPFC) in 1965/6 and 1966/7.