Tain Thistle

Location:

United Kingdom

Revenue:

$7 Million

Employees:

35

SIC Codes:

7941
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Description:

Tain Thistle were formed as a club in 1996, mostly playing at the "Links Playing Field" in Tain. The club concept (mooted by Ronnie Mackie) was initially based on the need for a Welfare team in the town, playing during the summer while Tain's second XI team, Tain St Duthus, competed during the winter. The parents of talented young player Colin Burry took on the organisation of the club, with his father Gordon handling the reigns of team manager. With Gordon and wife Pat's hard work, the club entered the Ross-shire Welfare league in 1997, struggling through a first season, mostly all of which was paid for out of their own pocket. Players came and went but Gordon stayed true to his belief that if you trained, you played. The proudest yet most heartbreaking moment for the club during the Burry era was reaching the Cordiner Cup Final, unfortunately losing 4-3 on the day. In 2003, Gordon stepped down as manager of Thistle to be replaced by the team of Bill Russell and Jim Robertson. Introducing a fresh approach, Russell guided the side to the upper half of the table, bringing a variety of younger players through the ranks turning Thistle into a force to be reckoned with. Setting a new standard every season, Tain enjoyed their most prolific season in 2005, reaching no fewer than three cup finals, finishing 2nd to Invergordon Social Club in the league, and narrowly losing the end of season Charity Shield. Following the departure of Russell and his team in 2007, Thistle appointed the temporary pairing of former players Arron Christie and Robbie Ross. The relatively inexperienced combo surprised many, as they guided Thistle to their first ever trophy, reaching the Pattison Cup final defeating Ross Club 3-1 on the day. The following year, Thistle moved to Grant Park, located across from the historic Links Park to allow redevelopment of the lower pitch. It was that year that Tain Thistle narrowly missed out on their first Ross-shire Welfare league title, falling just a point short of rivals Black Rock Rovers, in heartbreaking fashion. During Thistle's existance as a Welfare club, Tain St Duthus represented Tain at senior football level, competing in the North Caledonian "Second XI". Thistle continued to co-exist with St Duthus until 2005, when due to financial difficulties, St Duthus were forced to withdraw from the league and fold. In 2008, Tain Thistle were accepted into the North Caledonian league as Tain's newest representative, bringing senior football back to the Royal Burgh. Thistle follow in the footsteps of St Duthus, who also made the transition from Welfare to Second XI football in the early 70s.

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