How the English Women’s Football Pyramid works – from FA WSL to the park

FA Women's Super League corner flag at the Select Car Leasing Stadium Photo: Neil Graham
FA Women's Super League corner flag at the Select Car Leasing Stadium Photo: Neil Graham

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Women’s Football in England has seen rapid growth to the point that the English Women’s Football Pyramid has 10 levels to it, from the FA Women’s Super League at the top right down to Division 4 of the Hampshire County League.

The beauty of the football pyramid in England, is that it theoretically allows a side to go all the way from the bottom to the top – and of course back down again.

Right now there are professional sides in the FA WSL and plenty in the Championship. After that teams are very much more on a semi-professional basis with Level 5 down more than likely to charge players subscriptions.

Promotion and relegation at each Level varies. Currently there is one relegation and promotion place between the FA WSL and Championship for example, but the lower down you go, things start to open up with more places on offer.

Currently, the system works as follows from the bottom to the top:

A decent crowd in for Reading FC Women vs Manchester United.
A decent crowd in for Reading FC Women vs Manchester United. Photo: Neil Graham.

Level 1: FA Women’s Super League

Level 2: FA Women’s Championship

Level 3:

  • FA Women’s National League Northern Premier Division
  • FA Women’s National League Southern Premier Division

Level 4:

  • FA Women’s National League Division 1 North
  • FA Women’s National League Division 1 Midlands
  • FA Women’s National League Division 1 South West
  • FA Women’s National League Division 1 South East

Level 5:

Ascot United Ladies celebrate on the Women’s FA Cup. Photo: Richard Claypole.
  • North West Women’s Regional Football League Premier Division
  • North East Regional Women’s Football League Premier Division
  • West Midlands Regional Women’s Football League Premier Division
  • East Midlands Regional Women’s Football League Premier Division
  • Southern Region Women’s Football League Premier Division
  • South West Regional Women’s Football League Premier Division
  • Eastern Region Women’s Football League Premier Division
  • London and South East Women’s Regional Football League Premier Division

Level 6:

  • North West Women’s Regional Football League Division 1 (North)
  • North West Women’s Regional Football League Division 1 (South)
  • North East Regional Women’s Football League Division 1 (North)
  • North East Regional Women’s Football League Division 1 (South)
  • West Midlands Regional Women’s Football League Division 1 (North)
  • West Midlands Regional Women’s Football League Division 1 (South)
  • East Midlands Regional Women’s Football League Division 1 (North)
  • East Midlands Regional Women’s Football League Division 1 (Central)
  • East Midlands Regional Women’s Football League Division 1 (South)
  • Southern Region Women’s Football League Division 1 (North)
  • Southern Region Women’s Football League Division 1 (South)
  • South West Regional Women’s Football League Division 1 (East)
  • South West Regional Women’s Football League Division 1 (North)
  • South West Regional Women’s Football League Division 1 (West)
  • Eastern Region Women’s Football League Division 1 (North)
  • Eastern Region Women’s Football League Division 1 (South)
  • London and South East Women’s Regional Football League Division 1 (North)
  • London and South East Women’s Regional Football League Division 1 (South)

Level 7

Megan Cox, S4K FC Berks County Ladies Photo: Andrew Batt / contentello.smugmug.com
Megan Cox, S4K FC Berks County Ladies Photo: Andrew Batt / contentello.smugmug.com
  • Cheshire W&YFL Premier Division
  • Greater Manchester WFL Premier Division
  • Lancashire FA WCL Premier Division
  • Liverpool W&YFL Division 1
  • Durham County FA WL Division 1
  • East Riding County WFL Division 1
  • North Riding FL Women’s Division
  • Northumberland County FL Premiership
  • Sheffield & Hallamshire W&GL Division 1
  • West Riding County WFL Premier Division
  • Birmingham County WFL Premier Division
  • Midwest Counties FFL Division 1
  • Staffordshire G&LL Premier Division
  • Derbyshire G&LL Division 1
  • Leicestershire W&GFL Division 1
  • Lincolnshire W&GCFL
  • Northamptonshire W&GFL Premier Division
  • Nottinghamshire G&LFL Division 1
  • Hampshire County WFL Division 1
  • Thames Valley Counties WFL Division 1
  • Cornwall WFL Division 1
  • Devon WFL North & East Division
  • Devon WFL South & West Division
  • Dorset WL
  • Gloucestershire County WFL Division 1
  • Somerset County WL Division 1
  • Wiltshire County W&GL Premier Division
  • Bedfordshire and Hertfordshire WFL Premier Division
  • Cambridgeshire G&WFL Division 1
  • Essex County WFL Premier Division
  • Norfolk W&GFL Division 1
  • Suffolk G&WFL Premier Division
  • South East Counties WFL Premier Division
  • Sussex County WFL Premier Division
  • Greater London WFL Premier Division

Level 8:

  • Cheshire W&YFL Division 1
  • Greater Manchester WFL Division 1
  • Liverpool W&YFL Division 2
  • Lancashire FA WCL Division 1 North & West
  • Lancashire FA WCL Division 1 South & East
  • Durham County FA WFL Development Div
  • Northumberland County FL Division 1
  • Sheffield & Hallamshire W&GL Division 2
  • West Riding County WFL Division 1
  • Birmingham County WFL Division 1
  • Staffordshire G&LL Division 1
  • Derbyshire G&LL Division 2
  • Leicestershire W&GFL Division 2
  • Northamptonshire W&GFL Division 1
  • Nottinghamshire G&LFL Division 2
  • Hampshire County WFL Division 2
  • Thames Valley Counties WFL Division 2
  • Cornwall WFL Division 2
  • Gloucestershire County WFL Division 2
  • Somerset County WL Division 2 North
  • Somerset County WL Division 2 South
  • Bedfordshire and Hertfordshire WFL Division 1
  • Cambridgeshire G&WFL Division 2
  • Essex County WFL Division 1
  • Norfolk W&GFL Division 2
  • Suffolk G&WFL Division 1
  • Surrey Premier Division
  • Kent Division 1 East
  • Kent Division 1 West
  • Sussex County WFL Division 1
  • Greater London WFL Division 1 North
  • Greater London WFL Division 1 South

Level 9:

  • Greater Manchester WFL Division 2
  • North Riding WFL Division 2
  • Sheffield & Hallamshire W&GL Division 3
  • West Riding WFL Division 2
  • Hampshire County WFL Division 3
  • Thames Valley Counties WFL Division 3 North
  • Thames Valley Counties WFL Division 3 South
  • Thames Valley Counties WFL Division 3 West
  • Gloucestershire County WFL Division 3
  • Bedfordshire and Hertfordshire WFL Division 2
  • Cambridgeshire G&WFL Division 3
  • Essex County WFL Division 2
  • Norfolk WFL Division 3
  • Surrey Division 1
  • Sussex County WFL Division 2
  • Kent Division 2 East
  • Kent Division 2 West
  • Greater London WFL Division 2 Central & West
  • Greater London WFL Division 2 North

Level 10:

  • West Riding WFL Division 3
  • Hampshire County WFL Division 4

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