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Last Updated: Saturday, 17 April, 2004, 10:22 GMT 11:22 UK
Lower leagues face makeover
Non-league football is preparing for an overhaul ahead of the 2004/05 season when the tiers below the Nationwide Conference are set to be restructured.

While the top division outside the football league will remain as it is, the second tier will be split on grounds of geography, north and south.

The North and South Second Divisions will consist of 22 clubs each.

They will comprise three relegated clubs from the Nationwide with the rest coming from the present pyramid system.

The Dr Martens Premier Division, Ryman Premier League and Unibond League Premier Division will see 12 clubs promoted this season.

While the champions of each division will win a berth in the Nationwide Conference, those clubs finishing from second to 13th will be promoted to Conference North/South.

They will be joined by a further five clubs coming through play-offs within those leagues.

BBC Sport outlines the potential ups and downs.

DR MARTENS PREMIER DIVISION

Positions 2-12: Promoted to Conference North/South.

Positions 14-19: Joined by winners of the Dr Martens Eastern and Western Divisions in play-offs for two places in Conference North/South. Losing teams will remain in the Dr Martens Premier Division.

Positions 20-22: Will remain in the Dr Martens Premier Division or move to the Ryman Premier League.

RYMAN PREMIER LEAGUE

Positions 2-12: Promoted to Conference North/South.

Positions 14-19: Joined by winners of the Ryman League North and South Divisions in play-offs for two places in Conference South. Losing teams will remain in the Ryman Premier League.

Positions 20-24: Will remain in the Ryman Premier League or move to the Dr Martens Premier Division.

UNIBOND LEAGUE PREMIER DIVISION

Positions 2-12: Promoted to Conference North/South.

Positions 14-20: Joined by winners of the Unibond League First Division in play-offs for one place in Conference North. Losing teams will remain in the Unibond League Premier Division.

Positions 21-23: Will remain in the Unibond League Premier Division.



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