The new structure is shown on the Structure of The Pyramid: 2004/5 onwards page.
Starting from the upcoming 2004/5 season, the pyramid will take be changed as follows:
- Two new divisions will be created between The Conference and the three leagues currently below it. They will be known as Conference North and Conference South
- Consequently, all leagues currently below the Conference will be one level lower.
- The Isthmian League will change to having a premier division, and just one first division.
- The FA intend to reduce the number of leagues currently at level 8 from the current 15 to 12.
- The 2 teams that will make up the Conference (level 5) in 2004/5 will comprise:
- Two teams relgated from the Football League, division 3.
- The champions of Southern, Northen Premier and Isthmian Leagues, premier divisions.
- The 17 clubs currently in the Conference who do not get relegated or promoted at the end of the season.
- The 44 teams that will make up the new Conference North and South (new level 6) in 2004/5 will comprise:
- Three relegated from the Football Conference
- Top 13 clubs each from the SLP, NPLP and ILP. (Excluding those promoted to the Conference)
- Five teams chosen by a series of playoffs, invloving the remaing teams in the SLP, NPLP and ILP, and the champions of their 1st divisions.
- Details of the playoffs,see Tony Kempster's site. There is little point me reproducing them here.
- The 66 teams that will be in the SLP, NPLP and ILP (new level 7) in 2004/5 will comprise:
- The 9 ILP, 7 SLP and 9 NPLP teams that do not go into ConN or ConS
- Top seven clubs each from SLE and SLW.
- Top six clubs each from IL1N and IL1S.
- Top 13 clubs from NPL1
- Playoff between 8th position clubs in SLE & SLW
- The 88 teams that wil make up the SLW, SLE, NPL1 and IL1 (new level 8) in 2004/5 will comprise:
- 31 clubs from IL1N and IL1S not put in new level 8
- 25 clubs from SLE and SLW not put in new level 8
- 6 clubs from NPL1 not put in new level 8
- 11 clubs from the ICLs (old level 8/new level 9) promted in 'normal' way
- 15 teams from the ICLs which 'apply' for this one-off.
- Promotion into (new) level 8 - what will happen:
- Promotion and relegation will take place to/from the new level 8 in the 'normal' way at the end of the season.
- Clubs from the new level 9 may also apply to join the new level 8 but no more than two clubs (whether promoted normally or applying) from each level 9 league will be allowed to make the step up.
- This condition may be set aside to increase the number of clubs fom NPL feeder leagues to join level 8. (This is owing to the current defecit of Northern clubs).
- If there are more than 15 applicants, then selection will be based on league finishing position, ground grading and financial stability.
- If there are less than 15 applicants then the clubs relegated from this level will be able to reapply.
- N.B.: The numbers quoted for ConN, ConS, SLP, NPLP and ILP assume that no SLE, SLW, IL1N, IL1S or NPL1 club wins a playoff place. If this were the case these figures would change accordingly
- Three clubs will be interchanged between the Con and ConN/S:
- Bottom three clubs from the Conference releagted
- Two champion clubs of ConN and ConS will be promoted
- A third club from a series of play-offs between 2nd to 5th in the ConN and ConS will be promoted
- Six clubs will be interchanged between the ConN/S and the SLP, NPLP and ILP
- Bottom three of ConN and of ConS will be relegated
- The champions of the SLP, NPLP and ILP will be promoted
- A second club, from playoffs in 2nd to 5th places in the SLP, NPLP and ILP will be promoted.
- Twelve clubs will be interchanged between the SLP / NPLP / ILP and the SLE / SLW/ NPL1 / IL1
- Bottom four of SLP/NPLP/ILP relegated
- The champions and 2nd place clubs of the SLE / SLW / NPL1 / IL1 will be promoted
- A third club each from playoffs in 3rd to 6th places in the SLE / SLW / NPL1 / IL1 will be promoted.
- Eight clubs will be interchanged between the SLE / SLW / NPL1 / IL1 and the ICLs
- Bottom two of SLE / SLW / NPL1 / IL1 relegated
- Champions of the leagues below them eligable for promotion (no playoffs).
- Con - Conference
- ConN - Conference North
- ConS - Conference South
- ICLs - Inter county leagues, the leagues which are currently at level 8, and will be at level 9.
- IL - Isthmian League (a.k.a. Ryman League)
- ILP - IL Premier Division
- IL1 - IL 1st Division(s)
- IL1N - IL 1st Division North
- IL1S - IL 1st Division South
- NPL - Northern Premier League (a.k.a Unibond League)
- NPLP - NPL Premier Division
- SL - Southern League (a.k.a. Dr Martens League)
- SLP - SL Premier Division
- SLE - SL 1st Division East
- SLW - SL 1st Division West