In 2014, the Ardrossan and Saltcoats Herald published a short history of Winton Rovers.

Ardrossan Winton Rovers are widely known across the junior football spectrum and most of the local community could point you in the direction of Winton Park.  But some locals may not know what the park has been used for in the past - or the troubles that the team encountered throughout the years.  Starting back when World War II was being fought, we look at the trials, tribulations, success and challenges faced by Ardrossan's junior football team.  During the Second World War, Winton Park was used as a Royal Navy training and recreation base for HMS Fortitude which was based in Ardrossan.  During the 1943-44 season, the clubhouse and Bell’s Nursery which was nearby were burnt down in an accidental fire and a new clubhouse was built not long after.  At this time, the park played in the opposite direction but was changed to the way it is now and has remained the same ever since.
       The 1950s was a time for regeneration and modernisation as the wooden sleepers were removed and replaced with concrete ones in the terracing.
  In 1955, a new stand and dressing room were built and were amongst the best in the junior game with the team on the pitch also showing their worth.  Mixed fortunes followed in the 1960s with Rovers joining the Ayrshire League (Western) which included various visits across the water to Dunoon.  In 1965, the club suffered one of their biggest defeats when they lost 13-0 to Armadale Thistle in the Scottish Cup and there were also plans to build a new social club but this never went ahead at this time.  1970 saw Winton reach the Scottish Cup semi-final for the only time in which they faced Blantyre Victoria at lbrox.  A 2-0 win for the Lanarkshire side saw the underdogs just fall short of a place in the flagship event in the junior game.  The side, under the guidance of John Frye and Charlie Milligan, reached the dizzy heights when none expected them to get there.  Soon after the game was finished, goalkeeper Bobby Watson was signed up by Rangers.
       A new social club was built in Ardrossan's Bute Place in 1975 but this lasted only seven years and closed in 1982.
  Also during the 1980s, local man Willie Kean took over as manager.  Willie had previously been the boss at the Metallic side and along with Ian McQueen they brought a new ethos to the side, bringing in both local and experienced players including Frankie Clark and Derek Frye.  The 1990s saw major changes to the side through current vice-chairman Pat Breen.  Winton received 20000 from the football trust which saw the park completely transformed.  New floodlights were installed plus an all-weather seven-a-side training pitch, one of the first in the junior game.  This, along with a five star hospitality suite, new committee rooms and the construction of a new social club meant the side was booming.  MP Brian Wilson opened the new club and Winton took on a strong Rangers side to which they lost 3-0.
       In 1991, the floodlights were used for the first time and in 1992 major structural changes were implemented, with the old committee set-up changed.
  Ardrossan Winton Rovers Limited was introduced with the help of local businesses and supporters.  An initial share capital of 20000 was raised and things were going from strength to strength.  Andy Roxburgh and Craig Brown organised one of the first SFA play-ball schemes played at Winton Park and Partick Thistle, under the management of Jim Fleeting, played a number of reserve games in the Ardrossan ground.  The successful Airdrie side of the early 1990s, under the leadership of Alex MacDonald, trained at Winton Park prior to their Scottish Cup Final against Rangers.  A League Cup final between Auchinleck Talbot and Irvine Meadow XI was played under the lights and was one of the first finals in the junior game to take place at night.  The side was doing well under Davie Mcllroy and they won the old Western Cup and were holding their own in the old First Division.  Struggles lay ahead though and in 1995 a bust-up in the boardroom led to the chairman and assistant manager Pat Breen leaving the club.  Following on from this, over the next couple of seasons the support dropped, the social club was closed and later demolished after a fire and the seating was removed from the stand and it was then declared unsafe due to vandalism.
       At this time there was a real threat to the traditions of Ardrossan Winton Rovers and there was talk about the park moving to Dalry Road or to the park near to Central Avenue.
  The club was hanging by a thread and the directors at the time invited former Winton men John Sheehan, Willie Kean, David McKellar and Sam Morrison in to see if they wanted to take over the footballing side of things and Ardrossan Winton Rovers Community Sports Club was formed.  After several meetings and tough negotiations with the directors, the club and the ground was bought back by the new club thanks to the guidance of solicitor Martin McAllister and current chairman Dougie Rae.  When Dougie took up the role, vast improvements were seen over a five year period where the damaged stand was repaired, the pitch was upgraded and continues to be so every year and new sponsors and advertisers have come on board.
       Fast forwarding to this season, top management side of Chris Strain, John McCall, George Watt and kitman Jimmy McNeil have big ambitions.
  They have won just about every trophy in the junior game, with the exception of the Scottish Cup.  The club are now confident that they can progress through the leagues and will be announcing the support of new major sponsors on Saturday 4 October.  Assistant chairman, Pat Breen, said “With the support and assistance of sponsors we can eventually see Winton playing at the highest level of junior football and have a team that the town and community can be proud of.”
            Ardrossan and Saltcoats Herald,
17 September 2014