A non-league football club in Reading vow to keep the flag flying high for the town’s city status, despite having their latest bid rejected.

Reading City play at Rivermoor on the site of former club Reading Town and have been named ‘City’ ever since 2018.

The town discovered the disappointing news that their latest city status bid had been rejected this morning, with many residents outraged at the oversight.

The Cityzens, who play in the Combined Counties League Premier Division North, are “disappointed” that the bid has been unsuccessful but declares that “Reading is a city in all but name.”

Speaking to the Reading Chronicle, Head of Media, Ryan Sheehan said: “We’re disappointed that Reading has once again been unsuccessful in obtaining City status. As soon as Reading Borough Council made their intentions to bid for City status known we announced our support towards it. Although we didn’t win, we have to say well done to everyone who worked tirelessly putting together Reading’s bid, it was so compelling we genuinely believed this would be our time. 

“Not only would securing City status be great for us as Reading’s second biggest football club sitting at the heart of the community, it also would’ve been great for Reading as a whole as we have a lot of history and heritage to offer. 


Reading Chronicle:


Mr Sheehan continued, “Regardless of the result, we firmly believe that Reading is a city in all but name. In the last few years alone we’ve seen Reading win the prestigious award of ‘City of the Year’ at the Thames Valley Property Awards, finish second in the UK growth as per the PwC Good Growth for Cities 2019 index, narrowly behind Oxford and we’ve been named as one of the best Cities to live and work in as a result. Reading has also been ranked 13th place in the Tier 2 Cities of the future ratings.”

Ever since the rebrand, from original name Highmoorr Ibis, the club have had questions thrown at the name choice.

Mr Sheehan, who has volunteered at the club for many years, emphasised that the club’s name is here to stay, regardless of the city bid.

He confirmed: “Since re-branding from Highmoor Ibis to Reading City, our choice of name has been much talked about. Whilst becoming a City would bring added benefits, missing out on City Status will have absolutely no impact on our name as the brand has become stronger and stronger since 2018.

“By becoming Reading City rather than Reading Town we were able to preserve the history of Reading Town, who sadly dissolved in 2016. We were also, to preserve the history of Highmoor and Highmoor Ibis which eventually led to the formation of Reading City. Rather than writing over their history, people can see how each of these local clubs fed into Reading City, as we’re now known."