This year's AGM produced more news than the last ten put together, with FIVE new clubs joining the SAL club, a new constitution approved and a new secretary to boot - the latter after a vote, which hasn't happened since God was a baby!
First things first: congratulations to Ayyaz Ishaque of Bank of England AFC on being elected as the new Honorary Secretary of the SAL, replacing Graeme Wilson who, after many years of good work, has been released on parole for good behaviour. Comiserations go to Mark Freedman who also stood for the position, but who will thankfully still be with us next season to head up the new U21 Competition.
Moving on to the constitution and there will still be a three-division, 1st-team-only Senior Section, but this will be followed by an Intermediate Section which will be opened to teams below the 2nd XI for the first time. The Junior and Minor Sections will be merged to form an enlarged, regionalised Junior Section.
Finally, FIVE new clubs - the biggest intake since 1928 - join the SAL for 2017/18, taking the total figure to a record high of 38. Tooting & Mitcham Wanderers join from the Middlesex County League and will slot straight into Senior Division 1. This almost unprecedented move reflects the club's playing strength, coming from a 'pyramid' league.
Joining from the West End London AFA (whence NUFC Oilers joined) are Cambridge Heath who will join Senior Division 3, while Tansley - a club with a long AFA tradition but without having fielded open-aged sides in recent years - will also join. Their 1st XI will be placed into the Junior Section (North). Finally, two clubs have moved across from the Amateur Football Combination: Hampstead Heathens (who, despite the name, play in Catford) join Intermediate Division 3 while City of London - whose ground is a stone's throw from Heathens' - will begin in the southern divisions of the Junior Section.
Full details of the constitution and other issues discussed at the meeting will be posted over the weekend.