SATURDAY proved an emotional day for many Basingstoke Town fans, as the club played its final game at its Camrose home.

This ended 74 years of history with the club set to move to a new home in Winklebury from next season and come under community club ownership.

Most of a bumper crowd of more than 1,000 people experienced despair on Saturday as the team lost 2-1 to visiting Taunton Town and with it were relegated from the Evo-Stik League South Premier Division South.

This left a muted atmosphere at the end of the game, instead of a celebration of the end of an era.

Town’s first ever game at the ground built alongside Winchester Road was on December 1 1945, when Southampton Borough Police made the short trip north.

The current main stand was added in 1971, as the club moved out of the Hampshire League to the Southern League.

There has been a number of historic games at the stadium which has been witness to three promotion campaigns and most recently a promotion play-off semi-final game against Whitehawk.

The record attendance at the Camrose was 5,085 in 1997, when Town played Wycombe Wanderers in an FA Cup first round replay which ended in a penalty shoot-out victory for the home side.

Gazette senior sports reporter Graham Merry said: “I was lucky enough by then to be reporting on the game for the Gazette and what a great night it proved to be and you would hard-pressed not to say it was the best game ever at the Camrose.

“Running it a close second was the second round replay with Northampton a few weeks later, that will always be remembered as one of the coldest night ever for a game of football.

“Frost was clear to see on the pitch, but with Sky Sports televising the match live, the game went ahead and went to penalties again, but Town unfortunately lost.

“So many memories and a place in some many people’s hearts, the Camrose is sure never to be forgotten.”