Great Southern Football League (GSFLSA) since 1986
White and red
Southern Football Association/League (SFA/L) - 1901, 1909, 1911, 1919, 1923, 1936, 1938, 1948-9-50-1-2, 1954-5-6, 1961, 1964, 1984 (18 total); GSFLSA - 1986, 1988, 1998, 2004-5-6-7-8-9 (9 total)
Willunga Football Club can boast an unbroken history dating back to 1874. The club was formed on 29th May that year at a meeting held at the home of Henry Mudge, when it was decided that the club would conform to the rules promulgated by the Adelaide Club, and that the annual membership subscription would be set at two shillings and sixpence. During the first year the players wore blue skull caps, but from 1875 the club adopted red and white as its official colours. The club was well organised, and from 1876 had its own home ground at Willunga Recreation Reserve.\n\nOn Monday 30 April 1877, Willunga was one of thirteen clubs to send two delegates to a meeting at the Prince Alfred Hotel in Adelaide at which the South Australian Football Association was brought into being. However, in common with the two other country clubs at the meeting, Gawler and Kapunda, Willunga did not compete in the Association’s inaugural season, and for much of the nineteenth century matches only a handful of matches were contested each year. Some of these matches were against SAFA teams from the city, which habitually made trips to nearby country centres whenever they had breaks in their schedules.\n\nFor much of the twentieth century, Willunga was a stalwart, and frequently successful, member of the Southern Football Association. Far and away the club’s most successful phase was the nine season period between 1948 and 1956 when it won every premiership on offer except that of 1953, when it was runner-up. Its average margin of victory during its eight winning grand finals was almost 50 points.\n\nWillunga was a regular grand finalist during the 1960s, but competition was fierce at this time, and it had to be satisfied with just a couple of wins, by 12 points over Yankalilla in 1961, and by 26 points against McLaren Flat three years later. Former Sturt full back Dennis Rattigan was a key player for the Demons during the early 1960s, following in the footsteps of an earlier Blues great, 1903 Magarey Medallist ‘Taffy’ Waye, who was born and bred in Willunga, and played his early football there. Some of Waye’s descendants remain involved with the Willunga Football Club to this day.\n\nIn 1986, precisely a hundred years after they had been a foundation member of the Southern Football Association, the Demons made the momentous decision to transfer to the Great Southern Football League, where they enjoyed immediate success thanks to a 17.13 (115) to 15.11 (101) grand final defeat of Strathalbyn. Since then, they have established themselves as one of the major forces in the competition, contesting a further thirteen grand finals for wins in 1988, 1998, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008 and 2009.
John Devaney - Full Points Publications