Formed before Burnley Football Club, Burnley Belvedere are to celebrate a long and distinguished history with a special reunion.
Belvedere, founded in 1881 – the year before Burnley – have decided to make contact with as many former players, managers and officials as possible and invite them to a complimentary lunch at the clubhouse on Saturday, April 18th at 1 p.m.
The Greens have a great history of playing in leagues involving teams from East Lancashire, West Lancashire, Pendle, Manchester, Merseyside, Bolton and Cumbria.
Hundreds of players have represented their various teams over the years, and many have lost touch once their playing days ended.
Belvedere was formed as a choirboys’ team from St Peter’s Church, playing local teams in friendlies until 1902, when they joined the Lancashire Amateur League.
At this time, they played their matches on Turf Moor on Saturdays when Burnley were not using the ground.
Despite brief spells out of this league, they remained members until 1999.
In 1957, talks commenced with Calder Vale Rugby Club and Belvedere Cricket Club with a view to them joining forces to their mutual benefit.
The result was the formation of Belvedere and Calder Vale Sports Club, the purchase of land at Holden Road, Reedley, and the development of pitches and a clubhouse was completed in 1961.
During the years in the Lancashire Amateur League, the Belvedere teams enjoyed numerous successes, the highlights being Lancashire FA Amateur Cup winners in 1968/69, LFA Under 18 Cup winners 1975/76, LAL Premier Division winners on six occasions, LAL Cup First XI and Premier Reserve Division winners three times each, LAL Cup Second XI winners twice, LAL North Section Division A winners on eight occasions, and many more.
At it’s height, Belvedere fielded six senior sides in the LAL and one in the Nelson league. Entry into the West Lancashire League in 1999 brought short-lived success, and a move to the East Lancashire League followed, where Belvedere currently have a first XI and reserve team.
Junior football was introduced in the 1980’s and this particular venture has been a great success, with teams at Under 9, 10, 13, 15 and 18, team, and, for the first time next season an Under 21 team, ensuring transition from junior football to senior football.
In addition to a vibrant football section, Belvedere has a thriving rugby union set up, with three senior teams, whilst Sundays are devoted to junior rugby.