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24 September 2014

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You are in: London > Radio > The Non League Football Show > Your team A-Z > Folkestone Invicta FC

Folkestone Invicta FC

Find out about Folkestone Invicta from taking on the might of Stan Lazaridis to defeating Nigel Clough. If you want to add your stories about Invicta send the team an email to

Fact File

Name: Folkestone Invicta

Nickname: Invicta

Fascinating Fact: They were the only side to win away to Nigel Clough’s Burton Albion at Eton Park.

Address: Buzzlines Stadium, Cheriton Road Sports Ground, Cheriton Road, Folkestone,  Kent, CT19 5JU


Folkestone Invicta FC began life in 1936 in the East Kent Amateur League taking over use of the Cheriton Road ground in early 1991 after the end of the old Folkestone club who had enjoyed a long history in the Southern League.

Under manager Gary Staniforth, Invicta joined the Winstonlead Kent League and completed the Division Two league and cup double during the 1991-92 season, also winning the Kent Intermediate Shield that season.

Former Folkestone, Dover Athletic, Hythe Town, Crawley Town and Sittingbourne player Tim Hulme then took over as player-manager for the 1994-95 season. Invicta at one point chased the Kent League treble that season, but ended up empty handed.

FA Cup first

Invicta entered the F. A. Cup for the first time during the 1994-95 season, beating Hailsham Town and then Southern League Premier Division side Sittingbourne before going out 2-1 at home to a Worthing side which included former Tottenham striker Mark Falco.

Hopes were high for the 1995-96 season as Invicta strengthened their squad, but things turned sour during the second half of the season as Hulme left the club, with his assistant Micky Dix taking over for the remainder of the season.

Former Canterbury City boss Darren Hare was recruited for the 1996-97 season, but after a poor start he was soon replaced by one-time Folkestone Town manager Dennis Hunt, assisted by veteran player Bobby Wilson.

It was during this season that a club record 2,332 saw the club play hosts to a West Ham side including Julian Dicks, Frank Lampard and Stan Lazaridis, all in aid of a benefit game following freak floods in the town

Back to the top

Neil Cugley took over as boss in the summer of 1997 providing the catalyst for the return of Southern League football .

In 1998-99 Invicta finished third in the Dr. Martens League Southern Division behind champions Havant & Waterlooville and runners up Margate, with the promotion race going to the final day of the season. They also made it to the Third Round of the FA Trophy before going out 8-4 in an incredible tie away to three-times winners Woking.

"A club record 2,332 saw the club play hosts to a West Ham side including Julian Dicks, Frank Lampard and Stan Lazaridis."

The 1999-2000 season saw the club achieve more progress with promotion to the Dr. Martens League Premier Division as runners up to Fisher Athletic (London) in the Eastern Division. Again there was final day heartbreak for Invicta as the championship went right to the wire with Fisher winning away to Newport (Isle of Wight) to make Invicta’s final day win at Wisbech in vein. 

The 2000-01 season saw the club compete in the Dr Martens League Premier Division for the first time and Invicta achieved their objective of staying up. In the process they were the only side to win away to Nigel Clough’s Burton Albion at Eton Park.

The 2001-02 season saw an improved Invicta side briefly top the Premier Division table for the first time in the club’s history during the opening weeks of the season. The club reached the 4th Qualifying Round of the F. A. Cup but were beaten 5-1 in a replay away to Welling United.

Tightening the purse strings

But the 2002-03 season was to prove a difficult season for Invicta as financial constraints took their toll. The club finished bottom of the table and was relegated back down to the Eastern Division.

The next season the club finished fifth in the Eastern Division to win promotion via the re-structuring of the non-league game.

The club switched from the Southern League to the Ryman (Isthmian) Premier League for the 2004-05 season and finished in a mid table position. Striker James Dryden broke both the club’s record senior appearance and goalscoring records during the season and a new home league record attendance of 2,278 saw Invicta win 1-0 at home to local rivals Dover Athletic over Christmas..

But the club was to suffer real tragedy on Tuesday April 12th, 2005 when striker Paul Sykes collapsed on the pitch and died during a Kent Senior Cup semi final against one of his former clubs Margate. Invicta subsequently pulled out of the competition to allow Margate to play another of Paul’s former clubs Dover Athletic in the final at Folkestone when the Kent footballing community came together to remember one of its most popular characters.


In 2005-06 the ground was  re-named the Buzzlines Stadium, and with a new sponsorship Invicta enjoyed its best ever run in the F. A. Cup, going down 2-1 away to Chester City in the First Round after leading 1-0 at half time thanks to an early Adam Flanagan goal which was shown on Match of the Day.

last updated: 13/02/2008 at 13:26
created: 05/06/2007

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