Grier's Guide to Leatherhead
The match: Leatherhead v Kingstonian, Velocity Trophy. Tuesday 22 November, 19:45.
The club: Long-standing Isthmian stalwarts and rival of Ks. They're synonymous with Chris Kelly, 'The Leatherhead Lip', who starred as they reached the fourth round of the FA Cup in 1974-75. He later played for us before becoming manager and then chief exec. Another ex-Ks manager, Hayden Bird, has recently taken charge.
The town: Smallish town in Surrey which made a pleasant temporary home for us in 2017/18. Local residents include the actor Michael Caine.
The ground: Fetcham Grove, Guildford Road, Leatherhead, KT22 9AS. With covered terraces at either end as well as all down one side it's a decent ground for this level, with an assymetric and slightly chaotic character to it. The facilities are good and we were warmly welcomed during the season we played there.
Directions: The 465 stops close to the ground, taking about 45 minutes from Kingston via Surbiton and Chessington. The bus home is at 21:56 but you might have to wait another hour if it goes to penalties. The station isn't on a line to anywhere in the RBK but you can change at Raynes Park. There's a good-sized car park at the nearby leisure centre.
Our record there: It's fair to say Fetcham Grove was not a happy hunting ground when we shared there, with Leigh Dynan regularly getting frustrated by its boggy playing surface. Our last visit was an entertaining 3-2 win on New Year's Day.
Tickets: £12 adults; £8 concessions; £5 U16s; U12s free. You can buy them on the turnstiles or from their online ticket store at https://leatherheadfc.ktckts.com/brand/match-tickets (not yet available at time of writing)
Players to watch: Bird has taken his usual approach of signing a lot of his former players to his new club - so ex-Ks Dan Hector, Harry Osborne, Olly Allen and Lewis Pearch are all now Tanners. They join two more ex-Ks in Jermaine McGlashan and Louie Collins as well as Reise Allassani, who played a starring role helping Dulwich to promotion in 2018 before signing for Coventry, and non-league veteran Dave Tarpey.
Recent form: After a bad first half of last season they were desperately unlucky to be relegated on points per game after finding some late season form. But a slow start this term saw Bird brought in to replace former manager Luke Tuffs. Results have remained mixed but they've pulled clear of the relegation playoff zone.
Crowd: The derbies with Ks tend to pull in a good crowd - Leatherhead have a reasonable-sized support and we tend to travel well there ourselves. Of course the Velocity Trophy tends to be less of a draw than league games.
Drinking: The Running Horse, five minutes' walk from the ground, is undoubtedly the pre-match favourite with Ks fans. The welcome is warm and it offers good food at a reasonable price, Surrey Hills beer on tap and a big beer garden. It dates back to 1403 and legend has it that Queen Elizabeth once spent the night there when flooding made the River Mole impossible to cross.
Food: The Five Rivers on Bridge Street is an excellent curry house with good service and an interesting menu. The food in the ground is decent too, including the gourmet burger.