Donington School F.C. was an English football club, based in Donington, Lincolnshire.

Donington School
Full nameDonington Grammar School Football Club
FoundedMay 1870
GroundThe School Ground
SecretariesL. S. Calvert & E. Morris
1870–74 colours
1874–1939 colours



The club represented the Donington Grammar School, and claimed a foundation date of May 1870,[1] it had actually joined the Football Association in 1868,[2] possibly to gather information.

The club entered the first ever FA Cup in 1871–72, as a way of increasing the pupils' physical fitness.[3] Having been drawn against Queen's Park of Glasgow in the first round, the two teams could not agree on a date for the match, and both were allowed to progress to the second round of fixtures.[4] However, the two teams were again drawn together in round two, and in this instance Donington School withdrew, rather than face the cost (around £2 per student) and time of the trip to Scotland.[5][6]

The club did not enter the FA Cup again, although it did remain a member of the Football Association until 1882;[7] its remoteness and status as a school team meant it had few matches as a "senior" side, in the 1874–75 season only playing three times, scoring four goals and not conceding.[8]

In 1949 the school was renamed the Thomas Cowley School. A team of ex-pupils played an exhibition match in Glasgow against Queen's Park in May 1972, as part of the Football Association's centenary celebrations.[5] The match was won 6–0 by Queen's Park.



The club originally wore white trimmed with blue.[9] In 1874 it changed to scarlet and black jersey, cap, and stockings,[10] and the school was still wearing the same schema (with black shorts) up to the Second World War.[11] The final kit the school wore as Donington was white shirts and black shorts.[12]



The club played on the school premises, six miles from Surfleet railway station.[13]


  1. ^ Alcock, Charles (1871). Football Annual. London: Virtue. p. 54.
  2. ^ "Football". Field: 29. 11 January 1868.
  3. ^ Motson, John (2005). Motson's FA Cup Odyssey: The World's Greatest Knockout Competition. London: Robson Books. ISBN 1-86105-903-5.
  4. ^ Slade, Michael J. (2013). The History of the English Football League: Part One—1888–1930. Houston, Texas: Strategic Book Publishing. p. 8. ISBN 978-1-62516-183-3.
  5. ^ a b Steen, Rob. Floodlights and Touchlines: A History of Spectator Sport. London: Bloomsbury. ISBN 9781408152157.
  6. ^ Welbourne, D (1973). A History of Donington: Birthplace of Matthew Flinders (PDF). Donington: Cowley's School. Archived from the original (PDF) on 24 September 2015. Retrieved 28 May 2015.
  7. ^ Alcock, Charles (1882). Football Annual. London: Cricket Press. p. 99.
  8. ^ Alcock, Charles (1875). Football Annual. London: Virtue. p. 148.
  9. ^ Alcock, Charles (1871). Football Annual. London: Virtue. p. 54.
  10. ^ Alcock, Charles (1874). Football Annual. London: Virtue. p. 99.
  11. ^ "Donington G.S. Football Team". Lincolnshire Free Press: 7. 3 April 1939.
  12. ^ "Donington Grammar School First XI". Spalding Guardian: 6. 18 February 1949.
  13. ^ Alcock, Charles (1871). Football Annual. London: Virtue. p. 54.