We can confirm that the Upward Club Movement process within the Women’s Football Pyramid, which was opened via application in April, has now been determined by the Women’s Football Board following the curtailment of the 2020-21 season in Tiers 3-6.
All clubs participating in Tiers 3 to 6 (inclusive) of the Women’s Pyramid were permitted to apply for upward movement, with successful clubs moving into the league or division immediately above the Tier in which they currently operate.
As a result, FA Women’s National League Northern Premier side Sunderland and FA Women’s National League Southern Premier side Watford have been successful in applying for upward movement and will compete in the FA Women’s Championship next season.
Wolverhampton Wanderers and Brighouse Town will move up into Tier 3 (FA WNL Northern Premier), along with Southampton FC and Ipswich Town (FA WNL Southern Premier).
|FA Women’s Championship (Tier 2)||Sunderland, Watford|
|FA WNL Northern Premier (Tier 3)||Brighouse Town, Wolverhampton Wanderers|
|FA WNL Southern Premier (Tier 3)||Ipswich Town, Southampton|
|FA WNL Division 1 North (Tier 4)||Alnwick Town, FC United of Manchester|
|FA WNL Division 1 Midlands (Tier 4)||Peterborough United, Leek Town|
FA WNL Division 1 South East (Tier 4)
|Harlow Town, Queens Park Rangers|
|FA WNL Division 1 South West (Tier 4)||AFC Bournemouth, Portishead Town
|North West Regional Premier Division (Tier 5)||AFC Darwen
(Only 1 application received so 1 vacancy left unfilled)
|North East Regional Premier Division (Tier 5)||Sunderland West End, Wakefield Trinity|
|West Midlands Regional Premier Division (Tier 5)||Tamworth, Stourbridge|
|East Midlands Regional Premier Division (Tier 5)||Lincoln United, Notts County|
|Eastern Region Premier Division (Tier 5)
||King's Lynn Town, Millwall Lionesses (Millwall have also had an application for sideways movement approved so will play in the London & South East Regional Premier Division)
|London & South East Regional Premier Division (Tier 5)||New London Lionesses, Worthing|
|Southern Region Premier Division (Tier 5)||Abingdon Town (one vacancy due to the Southern Region League running one division at Tier 6)
|South West Regional Premier Division (Tier 5)||AFC St Austell, Sherborne Town, Forest Green Rovers (three vacancies due to the South West Regional League running three divisions at Tier 6)
Applications were marked against a criteria weighted 75 per cent on-field and 25 per cent off-field. The on-field criteria considered aspects such as points per game, cup performances and goal difference, across the last two seasons. The off-field section marked clubs on areas such as club structure, workforce and facilities. Clubs applying to move into the FA Women’s Championship, also had to demonstrate that they would be able to meet the required licence criteria.
Clubs were recently informed of the outcome of their applications and successful clubs will now be preparing during the off-season ahead of the 2021-22 season. We'd like to thank all clubs who applied following an impressive set of applications; and congratulate all those clubs who made successful applications as well as thank Leagues and County FAs for their support.
Decisions on Promotion Pool applications (movement from Tier 7 to Tier 6) and other movements within the Women’s Football Pyramid will be made shortly and confirmed to clubs, allowing full league allocations to be confirmed in due course.