THIS summer's Errea South West Challenge Cup is set to be even bigger following the announcement that Barnstaple Town will now also compete for the inaugural trophy. Barum will join Bideford, Crystal Palace, Grimsby Town, Hereford United, Torquay United,
THIS summer's Errea South West Challenge Cup is set to be even bigger following the announcement that Barnstaple Town will now also compete for the inaugural trophy.Barum will join Bideford, Crystal Palace, Grimsby Town, Hereford United, Torquay United, Kidderminster Harriers, Eastleigh and Clevedon Town in the hat for the pre-season tournament taking place in North Devon from July 23-27. They will be joined by one other Football League club - hoped to be confirmed by organisers on Friday.The 10-team knock-out tournament will now be hosted by Bideford, Appledore and Barnstaple after local clubs reached an historic agreement to work together to host the competition.Tournament director Mike Bradshaw said this was the first time that he could remember all three clubs working together so closely for the benefit of the entire North Devon football community."This really is ground-breaking stuff," he said. The chairman of Barnstaple Town made clear his overwhelming desire to participate and to place at our disposal the entire resources of their club, its splendid amenities, and ability to stage games at Mill Road in an expanded programme of matches."By including Barnstaple, we have the ability to stage additional games and to schedule matches in such a way as to prevent undue strain on the resources and pitches of our two other North Devon host clubs."The club chairmen of Bideford AFC and Appledore FC, both welcomed news of their North Devon colleague's involvement, as an enterprising addition to a tournament which has already electrified the local football community.A tournament draw will go ahead, as planned, at Bideford AFC's annual awards dinner at the Royal Hotel, Bideford, on Sunday, May 25.Tournament tickets will go on sale from Tuesday, May 27 at selected outlets and will include an allocation to the three host clubs. Full details will be available on club websites and in the North Devon Gazette.