The Flagstaff Hill Football Club is a relatively young Club compared to some, and we continue to build our heritage as we enter Season 2019. We commenced our evolution in 1963 as the Brighton Methodist Football Club. After only 5 seasons as a Club, we won our first Premiership, the E.J. Thomas Memorial Trophy in the A1 Reserves in 1967.
The 1970s was a time of great change and development for our Club. In 1974 we won another Premiership, the Division 2 A Grade Premiership. The following year the Club moved from Mitchell Park to Mawson High School and 2 years later in 1977, changed our name to the Brighton Tigers, omitting the ‘Methodist’ reference. In 1978 we changed from the United Church to the Glenelg South Football Association and then in 1979, our metamorphosis was complete when we changed our name and became incorporated as the Flagstaff Hill Football Club.
In 1981 Mayor Geoff Simpson opened our Clubrooms at the Flagstaff Hill Oval and we spent our first season at our new home. The Club continued to grow and evolve as it took advantage of the developing area of Flagstaff Hill, with new Junior sides being added in 1983, 1984 and 1985.
1985 brought about another change as we changed associations to the Southern Football League and changed our colours to red and blue. This resulted in immediate success when we achieved the memorable double of Premierships in the A and B Grades with both teams enjoying undefeated seasons in 1985. During this year the Club also achieved another milestone of some note when it registered a score of 65.30 (420), an Australian record score at the time. For the record, we won!
In 1986 we were promoted to Division 1 and won a C Grade Premiership and in 1987 in only our second year in Division 1, we lost the Grand Final by just 6 points.
The 1990s came with further expansions to the Club, with Sub-Junior teams being introduced in all grades (Under 9s, Under 11s and Under 13s) as well as a booming Auskick program. In 1995/96 the Clubrooms underwent a huge overhaul, being renovated into the Clubrooms that we use today. The Club went without a premiership in the 90s, with 3 Grand Final appearances but no Premierships.
The turn of the century brought about immediate success for the Falcons, with the Under 14s winning the Club’s first ever Junior Premiership in the Division 2 competition. 2002 saw major changes behind the scenes, with the Club taking stock and deciding it was time to move forward and we set about rebuilding our Club based on the following 3 principles:
- Club Spirit
- Constant Improvement
- Junior Development
After the Southern Football League merged into one division, the Club set out to win its first flag in the top competition. They achieved this in 2003 with the rampant Under 14s going through the season undefeated and bringing home the Falcons first Division 1 Premiership. The highlights continued in the off-season as former Falcon Junior Adam Cooney was taken at pick No. 1 in the AFL Draft by the Western Bulldogs.
The Under 14s went back-to-back in 2004, while both the Under 16s and Under 18s capped off a stellar year for the Juniors by both making the Preliminary Finals. Another Flaggy junior was taken in the 2004 AFL Draft with Danny Meyer being picked up at No. 12 by Richmond, and later re-drafted by Port Adelaide.
Fantastic Junior success followed in 2005 with the Club’s first Under 18s Premiership. Midway through the season, the Club undertook a $50,000 Oval Lighting upgrade project which was partly funded by FHFC Supporters and Sponsors.
The Oval was further improved in the 05/06 off-season with an $80,000 drainage project undertaken, which took our oval from one of the worst to one of the best in the league. Construction of a communal storage shed, and a total renovation of the home changerooms further improved the Flagstaff Community Centre. On the field 2006 almost returned the Club’s second back-to-back success with the Under 18s falling short in the Grand Final.
Premierships in both Seniors and Juniors came in 2007 with the C Grade and the Under 16s both winning their Grand Finals. Olliecom Voice & Data Solutions installed a state of the art audiovisual system into the Clubrooms for reviewing games, social events, corporate functions and promoting sponsors. In 2007 the Club also fielded a record (at the time) of 11 teams, 3 Senior and 8 Junior.
Our 4th Under 14s Premiership came in 2008 while past player Adam Cooney took out the AFL’s most prodigious award, the Brownlow Medal while playing for the Western Bulldogs. In 2009 the Senior side of the Club took steps backwards in the Club’s quest for Senior glory, but the Under 18s continued the Club’s strong decade in the Juniors with another Grand Final appearance.
2009 also saw Club legend Wade Stone beat the Flagstaff Hill Football Club’s record for most Senior Games when he played his 330th game in Round 5 against Aldinga. The Club took a further leap forward in the Junior system, adding both Under 14s and Under 16s to the SFL Sunday Competition. After gaining sponsorship for a new Football Club only Gym, a shed was constructed midseason and over $10,000 worth of Gym Equipment was purchased and installed before the 2010 pre-season.
2010 was another success story for the Junior Falcons with the Under 16s winning the Premiership and the Under 14s making it to a Grand Final. Off-field the Club set up a Female only supporter group called ‘The Falconettes’ – they had over 30 members in 2010, has grown to over 150 in 2013 and we look to see those numbers increase in 2014. 2011 saw the Falcons take another step towards their goal with the A Grade having their best Division 1 season since 1997, finishing 4th. The B Grade also made a Preliminary Final after finishing Minor Premiers. These results along with the Under 16s going back-to-back meant that the Flagstaff Hill Football Club was awarded the SFL’s ‘Club of the Year’ in the competition’s 125th year.
During the Pre-Season of 2012, the Club implemented two more major projects around the Club. The first was a net which was constructed behind the southern goals to help eliminate the time lost by balls going missing every time a goal was kicked. The second project was to replace the old goalposts with AFL Standard 12m high Goal posts and 9m high Point posts. On the field, success continued with the Under 18s bringing home the Premiership and both the B Grade and Under 16s making it to the Grand Final.
In 2013 ‘The Falconians’ was born, a male-only supporter group to rival ‘The Falconettes’ – they had 55 members in their inaugural year. Senior success returned for the Falcons with the B Grade Premiership. This was the Club’s first ever Division 1 Senior Premiership, and first A or B Grade flag in 28 Years. For the Junior Falcons, the Under 18s went back-to-back with another Grand Final victory over Cove.
The B Grade fell agonisingly short of back-to-back Premierships in 2014, with an 11 point defeat in the Grand Final. During the minor round, Wade Stone played his 400th Senior Game for the Club when he played against Hackham in the B Grade.
2015 proved to be a very successful year for The Club with all 8 Teams making the Finals. The A Grade finished minor premiers while the Under 14s won our only Premiership for the season. Michael Shearer had another fantastic individual season claiming the SFL A Grade Mail Medal for the second year running.
What can we say about Season 2016, Flagstaff Hill FC was named SFL Club of the Year. All 8 Teams once again made the Finals with A Grade finishing the Minor Round in 4th spot on the Ladder and then going undefeated during the Finals series to take out their 1st A Grade Flag in 31 years! Flagstaff Hill 7-11 (53) defeated Morphett Vale 6-4 (40). Not to be outdone Stoney and the C Grade boys finally powered through the Preliminary Final and into a deserved and long overdue Grand Final. A just reward for Stoney’s efforts over the years as Coach. Flagstaff Hill 8-3 (51) defeated Reynella 6-8 (44). Saturday U/14s took on all comers in a barnstorming year, the boys were keen to go Back to Back and that they did with an undefeated season. Flagstaff Hill 17-8 (110) defeated Reynella 1-2 (8). Then to cap off a sensational year for the Club our 2 Sunday U/14 sides (Red & Blue) did us proud playing out the Grand Final. Flagstaff Red 5-5 (35) defeated Flagstaff Blue 2-3 (15). A great Year for ALL involved at the Flagstaff Hill Football Club.
Stay tuned… or better still GET ON BOARD… this is only the beginning.
We are proud of our heritage and now we are focused on our future.