The 90's Onwards
After the ambitious announcement to move grounds, it was only natural that the playing ambitions should be raised. In 1991/92, Terry Rowles was recruited as manager from Mangotsfield United who signed a whole new team and set about reviving the club's fortunes on the playing field. In the last season at Teignmouth Road, they finished as runners-up to Weston-Super-Mare , playing their last ever match at Teignmouth Road on 20 April 1992.
1992/93 was to prove by far the most successful in the club's history and it was heralded by the move to the new Hand Stadium. This superb development included an all weather pitch, training facilities, a 300-seater stand, tiered terracing around the whole ground with an excellent clubhouse and dressing room facilities. Gates increased to an average of 421 and the team ended up winning the league title in style, remaining unbeaten and scoring 137 goals in only 38 matches. The season ended with a first ever League Cup Final appearance and election to the Beazer Homes League followed to round off a superb first season at the new ground.
In their first season in the Beazer Homes Midland Division, they finished a creditable fifth after having to start the campaign with a new manager, Steve Fey, and a brand new team. After just one season the club were transferred across to the Southern Division, finishing 9th in 1997/98 before being switched back to the Midland Division for the 1998/99 season. The switch clearly benefited the club as they managed to win the Midland Division Championship after a wonderful season in which they also won the Somerset Premier Cup. In their first season in the Premier Division the club finished in a creditable eighth place and have now fully settled into the Dr Martens League, with ambitious plans to develop the ground into a sports and social complex to serve the local community. The club sadly suffered relegation back to the Western Division at the end of 2000/01, despite winning the Somerset Premier Cup that season and again in 2001/02. An era ended in September 2004 when manager Steve Fey left the club after 11 years in charge and was replaced by former Plymouth Argyle and Torquay United manager, Kevin Hodges. He, in turn, left the club in October 2005, with Clevedon top of the league table, to become assistant manager at Coca-Cola League club, Yeovil Town. Former Bristol Rovers player and coach, Phil Bater, took over the job, becoming only the fourth manager at the club in 19 years, and completed the job started by Kevin Hodges by building on his success and guiding the club to their second Southern League Championship success and back into the Premier Division.
In November 2006 Clevedon Town played in the first round proper of The FA Cup for the first time in their history, losing 1-4 at home to Coca-Cola League 2 team Chester City in front of a record attendance at The Hand Stadium of 2,261. In their first season back in the Premier Division Clevedon consolidated with an 18th place finish in 2006/07, and in 2007/08 improved on this by finishing 11th. However, despite this improvement, and leading us to the final of The Southern League Errea Cup, where we lost 1-4 on aggregate to Hillingdon Borough, manager Phil Bater resigned at the end of the season, leaving his assistant Wayne Powell to take over the reins for season 2008/09. With many senior players also leaving at the same time Wayne was forced to rebuild the side, and on a much reduced budget, but despite his best efforts The Seasiders ended 2008 at the bottom of the Premier Division, and Wayne was relieved of his duties. The task of saving Clevedon Town from relegation in 2009 was handed to former Port Talbot Town manager Nick Tucker. Nick and his management team immediately brought in a few new players, who gelled quickly into the team and, as results gradually improved, Clevedon Town ended the season in 18th place - one place and two points above the relegation zone.
Most of the players were retained for season 2009/2010 but, as the UK recession started to bite, Clevedon were forced to reduce the budget again and several senior members of the squad left in January 2010. Nick Tucker brought in replacements but the team continued to struggle, particularly at home, so in late March 2010 with The Seasiders languishing in 20th place, Nick offered his resignation, which was accepted by the Directors. Peter Beadle, once a prolific striker with both Bristol Rovers and Bristol City, who had a brief spell at Clevedon as coach under Kevin Hodges, as well as managerial experience with Taunton Town and Newport County, was asked to return to The Hand as caretaker manager to lead Clevedon through another battle to avoid relegation. However, despite "Beads" best efforts, the team picked up just two points from his eight games in charge and Clevedon were duly relegated after finishing in 21st place.
In the summer of 2010 former Bristol City, Wycombe Wanderers and Northampton Town defender Micky Bell was appointed as the new manger of Clevedon Town and he assembled a young but inexperienced squad that finished 20th in their first season back in Division One South & West. In 2011/12 they again came 20th in the league. But it was in the cup competitions that Clevedon achieved great success as they won The Red Insure Southern League Cup, beating Premier Division team Banbury United 2-1 on aggregate, and then were narrowly beaten 2-1 by Blue Square Conference South outfit Weston-super-Mare in the Somerset Premier Cup Final. Further cup success eluded the team in 2012/13, but they improved their finishing league position to 15th in a season that featured away wins at all four of the play-off teams.
In January 2014 Micky Bell parted company from Clevedon Town and former player Paul McLoughlin was asked to move up from his roles as first team coach and head of the academy and youth sections to take over as manager. The team went on to finish 17th and followed this in 2014/15 with 18th place. However, due to problems with the floodlights at The Hand Stadium, Clevedon Town were demoted back to the Western League for the start of the 2015/16 season, Paul McLoughlin resigned and almost all the players left. In October 2015 a sponsorship deal was agreed with a personal fitness company and the Hand Stadium was renamed The Everyone Active Stadium. Micky Bell returned to take charge of the team and his young inexperienced squad ended their first campaign back at Step 5 in 19th place. In 2016/17 they improved on this by finishing 14th and in 2017/18 they climbed up to 12th.
The Hand Family
No history of Clevedon would be complete without paying tribute to the Hand family, without whom the Club would almost certainly not exist. H G Hand (Secretary 1895-1912) and A W Hand (Secretary 1918-1968) were followed by Doug Hand, who retired as Club President at the end of the 1994/95 season after 50 years service to the club, much spent in the same way as his father and grandfather, as Club Secretary. Doug sadly passed away in November 2013 aged 92. Without their enthusiasm and hard work over the years, the club would probably not be in the position it is now and it was only the wisdom of A W, in buying the Teignmouth Road site, which laid the foundations for the present successful club. It was a fitting tribute that the present ground was originally named The Hand Stadium after them, and the families' service to the club has been recognised by the Football Association.