History

The club was established in 1963 as a junior team named Armada Sports before becoming an adult club and adopting their current name in 1967. The club joined the Thurrock Thames-side Combination League for the 1967–68 season, before switching to the Reserves Division Two of the Greater London League in 1968. After finishing as runners-up in the division in 1969–70, they were promoted to Reserves Division One. In 1971 the club were founder members of the Essex Senior League (ESL). They finished as runners-up in 1972–73, before winning the league in 1976–77. The club went on to win the league for the next three seasons, as well winning the League Cup in 1977–78, before switching to the Athenian League in 1980.

After finishing second in their first season in the Athenian League, Basildon joined Division Two of the Isthmian League for the 1981–82 season. In 1983–84 they won Division Two and were promoted to Division One. The club remained in Division One until being relegated at the end of the 1988–89 season when they finished second bottom of the Division and were demoted to Division Two North.

In 1991 Basildon left the Isthmian League and dropped back into the Essex Senior League. They won the league and League Cup double in 1993–94, but did not take promotion to the Isthmian League. The club won the League Cup for a third time in 1997–98. After finishing as runners-up in the league in 2017–18, they were promoted to the Isthmian League’s North Division.

Ground

The club played at the Gloucester Park Bowl from 1967, with their record attendance of 4,999 being set for their first match against a West Ham XI. The ground had uncovered seating along one side of the pitch, with a roof later built to create a 200-seat stand. In 1970 they moved to Gardiners Close and the new ground was opened with another friendly match against West Ham on 11 August in front of a crowd of 3,600, although they continued to play floodlit matches at the Gloucester Park Bowl until floodlights were installed at Gardiners Close. A covered standing area was built on one side of the pitch, but was removed by the end of the 1970s; a new, equally short-lived stand was built in its place in the 1980s with three steps of terracing. Two covered areas were also built on the other side of the pitch, one of which had seats installed after they were removed from Leytonstone’s Granleigh Road ground. Another smaller stand was later built between the two covered areas containing the directors box.

Floodlights were installed in 1979 at a cost of £10,000 and inaugurated with a friendly match against Crystal Palace on 30 October, attracting a crowd of over 2,000. Plans were announced in 1995 to move to a new stadium on Courtauld Road next to the A127; however, the plans were dropped in 1997 due to complaints about the proposed development. Gardiners Close currently has a capacity of 2,000, of which 400 is seated and 1,000 covered.

Honours

  • Isthmian League
    • Division Two champions 1983–84
  • Essex Senior League
    • Champions 1976–77, 1977–78, 1978–79, 1979–80, 1993–94
    • Challenge Cup winners 1977–78, 1993–94, 1997–98
  • Essex Senior Trophy
    • Winners 1978–79
  • League Cup
    • Winners 2016-2017

Records

  • Best FA Cup performance: Third qualifying round, 1983–84, 1998–99
  • Best FA Trophy performance: Second qualifying round, 1985–86
  • Best FA Vase performance: Quarter-finals, 1980–81
  • Record attendance: 4,999 vs West Ham United, friendly match, 1967