This is the website of Darlington Away Far Travelling Supporters – DAFTS.
We’ve started updating our away guides for 2022/2023 with Darlo again in the Vanarama National League North.
We’re hoping the disruption from the pandemic is a thing of the past – and we can all start enjoying football again, with things as normal as possible.
Final arrangements and any suggestions you have will be added to the guides in the days before the matches.
We hope to see some of you there!
2022/2023 away trips:
Saturday 13th August 2022 Chorley
Tuesday 16th August – Southport
Saturday 27th August (1pm, all ticket) – Spennymoor Town
Saturday 10th September – AFC Telford Utd
Monday 12th September – Bradford Park Avenue
Saturday 8th October – Chester
Saturday 22nd October – King’s Lynn
Tuesday 25th October – Buxton Town
Saturday 5th November – Kidderminster Harriers
Saturday 26th November – Hereford
Tuesday 6th December – Curzon Ashton
Saturday 10th December – Gloucester City
Monday 2nd January 2023 (1pm kick off) – Scarborough Athletic
Saturday 14th January – Farsley Celtic
Saturday 21st January – Banbury Town
Saturday 11th February – Boston Utd
Saturday 18th February Leamington
Saturday 4th March – Alfreton Town
Saturday 11th March – AFC Fylde
Saturday 25th March – Kettering Town
Saturday 7th April – Blyth Spartans
Saturday 15th April Brackley
Saturday 29th April – Peterborough Sports
If you have information to share about any trips to come for this season, please leave a comment or email email@example.com
WHO ARE WE?
We are a group of far-flung and exiled fans of Darlington FC – and in the winter of 2019 we celebrated our 25th anniversary.
This is the erstwhile Football League club which fell on hard times. Remember the mad owner who built us a 26,000-seater stadium and we went bust? Yes, that one.
Well, thankfully we are living, breathing and thriving. The club is now fan-run, with no financial precipices in sight and we are playing a seventh season in the Vanarama Conference North in 2022/23 after four promotions in five seasons.
Darlington are also back in Darlington again (with our original name), sharing a ground with Darlington RFC but with the future hope of a (sensible) new ground development in the area.
What do we do?
DAFTS has been going for 28 years in 2022/2023. There is no longer an email list of “members”, but we will advertise and share any offers of lifts, transport and meet-ups. We try to meet for as many Saturday away games as possible, with recommended pubs; we plan weekenders. We also meet in Darlington for some home matches
The group can put fans in touch to help share travelling costs, or just help provide a focus for meeting before a game.
It can be a lonely existence being a Darlo fan in some parts of the country…(even in Darlington at times..)
DAFTS can put you in touch with other members in your local area – it can lead to car-shares or just sharing knowledge of handy places to meet for a pre-match pint or snack. It’s all free and a mailing list with information pack goes out once a season and for the last three years we’ve been on-line!
We’d be pleased to receive any suggestions and contributions – so if you’ve got suggestions for a place to stay, drink or eat for forthcoming games, or any messages or appeals, get in touch.
Have you got room in your car or need a lift to the game? Have some pub recommendations or wonder if there’s a Darlo fan living in your area? Why not email us?
DAFTS was founded back in the winter of 1994 by the sadly departed Bob Barnes, a fan living in the Midlands.
He got the idea for the name after hearing of a Rochdale exiles fan-club run by former students in the south west – Bath University Rochdale Keen Supporters (BURKS..)
From a first meeting before a FA Cup tie, in recent years with the hard work of Darlo fan Neil Johnson (London, Aberdeen and for many years in Norway!) and his trusty notebook, the membership has grown and since the Summer of 2001 we’ve also had a website presence (you’re already here in case you didn’t realise) and an e-mail group of around 220 fans and growing.
DAFTS are a group of exiles and far-flung fans, who meet together at Darlington FC away games – and some at home matches too – and can put fans in touch to help share travelling costs, or just help provide a focus for meeting in the pub or on the more scenic trips or weekends away.
As well as “weekenders” at matches, from seaside towns to London, we have been on pre-season tours to the Isle of Man in 2000 and 2002 and Ireland in 2001. Those were the days when Darlo played pre-season tours!
What others said
“Darlo may now be haemorrhaging spectators as quickly as they were spunking away currency between their 914 periods in administration, but in DAFTS they retain one of the friendliest and most distinctive fan sites you’ll come across. A joyful jumble of a thing, with writing that’s unpretentious and kind, it evokes a very real sense of the life of the club and fans.”
Cod Alimighty (Grimsby)
“A top site this, one of the best in the whole division, sorry League Two (puke). Well put together, useful, tells you things you actually want to know. Oh and independent. That’s not official; not a franchised effort; that’s INDEPENDENT. Sadly there are fewer and fewer such sites.”
Recommended among a dozen independent football fans’ websites, for having “variety, depth, strong writing, original design and history” – When Saturday Comes