FOR a club steeped in working class culture, Auchinleck Talbot has some pretty blue-blooded roots.

One hundred and ten years ago a local landowner donated what had been a copse.

His name was Richard Wogan Talbot, fifth Baron of Malahide. He gave Auchinleck its unusual name, Talbot, or Bot, and the Beechwood Park ground it has played in ever since.

The ground did not see much success for its first four decades. Late in World War Two, German prisoners of war helped fix up the club house.

Then in 1949, Talbot won its first Scottish Junior Cup. That got the community excited. The following year thousands of tonnes of pit slag was moved to Beechwood to beef up the terrace for the visit of rivals Irvine Meadow in the Scottish Cup.

Some 10,000 people watched that game, an all-time record. It had taken 100 men and 12 trucks to move 1,200 tons of slag to Beechwood. Volunteering was to become a huge club tradition.

There followed, alas, lean years. Auchinleck struggled throughout the 1960s, once suffering an 11-0 defeat to arch-rivals from neighbouring pit village Cumnock. Its pavilion burned down in 1972 after a spate of vandalisms.

The community rallied around and new blood was brought in to the club. In 1986 it won the Junior Cup again, beginning a run of 11 victories, including in 2018.

A new stand was put up - or rather an old one bought from Hamilton Academical- by 2003. Volunteers did much off the work.

Talbot are no strangers to their next opponents, Hearts. Their last big Scottish Cup run, in 2012, ended after the Edinburgh side scored a 84th minute winner. Can Auchinleck once again show their class?