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Chatham Town placed back in Ryman League Division 1 South after four years in Ryman League Division 1 North

By Steve Tervet

Chatham Town are back in Ryman League Division 1 South after four tough years in the North division.

Longer away trips and fewer Kent derbies in the North division had made life increasingly difficult for Chats, who only avoided relegation in the final week of last season.

Chatham Town manager Kevin Watson Picture: Steve Crispe
Chatham Town manager Kevin Watson Picture: Steve Crispe

But after the Football Association's League Committee met on Thursday, the 2015/16 club allocation for steps 1-4 of the non-league pyramid confirmed Chatham's return to the South.

They will play county rivals Faversham, Folkestone, Herne Bay, Hythe, Ramsgate, Sittingbourne and Whitstable next season and the increased revenue from likely increased attendances at those derbies will come as a welcome boost for the club's finances.

Chats last played in the South division in 2010/11, when they finished 21st out of 22 clubs.

Their place in the North division has been taken by Southern Counties East champions Phoenix Sports, whose local games will be against Cray Wanderers and Thamesmead Town.

Meanwhile, a sideways move at Step 2 has seen Oxford City moved to the newly-named Vanarama National League South meaning they will play Dartford, Ebbsfleet and Maidstone in 2015/16.

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