THE history of Ramsbottom United Football Club from the time it was founded in 1966 is told in a new book, written by a former Bolton headteacher

‘Come on You Rams’ is a book which author Nigel Jepson started writing this year as a means of coming to terms with the fact that the football season had ended abruptly in March due to the covid pandemic.

Hunting for source-material, Nigel was astounded at the amount available that came to him in the form of scrapbooks that had been kept by those involved with the club from its very start.

‘Ramsbottom is a very close community,’ said Nigel, who lives in the town, "Which means that those who have played for the club over the years have kept in regular touch and there is a common bond between the different ‘generations’ of players.’

He added: "What emerges here is a fascinating account – in over 200 pages accompanied by a wealth of photos - of the journey Rammy United has made from starting out as a park team in 1966 to achieving its current Northern Premier League status."

The book pays tribute to the part played by the dedicated Harry Williams ­— often dubbed ‘Mr Ramsbottom United’ ­— who has endured at the club’s helm throughout its 54 years of existence to date.

Mr Jepson said: "Legendary are the stories - captured throughout this book - relating to Harry’s distinctive, and famously thrifty, way of running the club which has helped make Rammy United such a special club within the folk-lore of the semi-pro footballing circuit."

Other characters which make an appearance in the book are the remarkable, 'fiery managerial duo' of Bernard Morley and Anthony Johnson, cutting their managerial teeth at the Harry Williams Riverside Stadium, who succeeded in achieving two promotions in 2012 and 2014 before controversially departing, together with the core of their Rammy team, to ‘Class of 92’ Salford City.

Mr Jepson said: "Frank account is given in this book to the issues that faced the club both before and after the Bernard/Jonno era. The book also pays full justice to the way club fortunes have since recovered under present manager Chris Willcock. Despite the Covid-based annulment of season 2019/20, the club has again managed to hit the high spots up to the present time.

"In all, ‘Come on You Rams’ provides a heady cocktail of tales and testimonies, triumphs and occasional tragedies, such as surrounding the death of manager Ken Bridges, on and off the pitch, told through a vast number of revealing eye-witness accounts across the years – managers, players, fans and all those working tirelessly behind the scenes to make the club what it is today.

"This is in essence a story about a club that has always punched above its weight. It makes for a compelling read not only to anyone directly interested in the particular story of Rammy United itself but also to all those eager to learn more about the spirit of football played at this semi-pro level of ‘the great national game’."

The book is set against the backdrop of the social and economic history of Ramsbottom.

A ‘launch event’ has been arranged in the club’s Hospitality Suite, authorised by Ramsbottom United Football Club, for all interested in purchasing a copy of the book on Saturday, December 5 from 2pm onwards prior to the recently scheduled home game against Colne. On this occasion, a first print of 200 copies, where all proceeds from the sales go directly to the club, will be available on a first-come, first-served basis at a discount price of £10 on the day.

Books will also be available from the Club.

‘Come on You Rams’, published by YouCaxton at £11.99 will be available for purchase from the start of December, including from Amazon or Waterstones in Bury.