AFC ALDERMASTON are on the up after being promoted into the Hellenic League Division One East.

This was after the Football Association re-structured steps four, five and six of grassroots football.

The move comes despite the fact the side finished seventh in the Thames Valley League Premier Division, but was instigated by the FA themselves as they needed more teams for step six.

The side whose home ground is the Rec Soc at the Atomic Weapons Establishment return to step six, which is the same level as the Division One’s of the Wessex and Combined Counties League since 1986.

They were in the Hellenic Division One for seven seasons and in their first campaign of 1979/80 they came seventh.

After this they had spells in the Hampshire and Wessex League.

In past two years have played in the Thames Valley League Premier Division, reaching two cup finals at Madejski Stadium in consecutive years.

Last week they lost narrowly 1-0 in their latest trip to the Royals' home in the finale of the Berkshire Trophy Centre Senior Cup to Cookham Dean.

They moved into the Thames Valley League with the aim of moving back up the football pyramid which they have been able to do.

AFC Aldermaston’s club chairman Martin Desay was delighted to receive the news and said: “We were approached by the FA and league to make an application as the FA was doing some restructuring and looking for clubs which meet or was close to step six.

“We applied and undertook a step six ground inspection that was largely okay. There are a couple of things we have to do to fully comply which are in hand.”

“We have for some time had aspirations to return to step six when the time was right, so it is is great to see the long term planning has paid off.

Looking ahead chairman Desay added: “We are really excited at the club as this is a great opportunity. We have invested to building the club up again. We now have youth football at most levels and are keen to expand further.

"Next season we will have an under-18 side in the Allied Counties under-21 league.

“We are now in the process of building a first team squad that will be competitive and successful in the Hellenic League.