The 1990’s created a tumultuous time for the Bullants and the VFA;  Like all things with a good foundation however, they can be maintained and rebuilt with ease. It was in these times that a beneficial merger with an under 18’s team the Northern Knight was struck. The Bullants then rebranded to the Northern Bullants.

In 2002 an affiliation with Carlton FC was formed. This mutually beneficial affiliation saw the Bullants achieve multiple successful football seasons, especially with two consecutive Grand final appearances under the tutelage of current-day Carlton coach, David Teague. This affiliation later grew into a merger and the Bullants were rebranded into the ‘Northern Blues’.  Some VFL champions then played for the Bullants in this time, such as Ahmed Saad, Kane lambert, Alex Johnson and Andre Gianfagna.

It is now that the Covid-19 pandemic has called a close to this merger between Carlton and Bullants. Now with nothing but the sturdy foundation to rebuild from, we have a unique opportunity to stand alone and are asking you to be a part of this rich history like the many before us.

Our History

The Northern Bullants and the Northern Suburbs have a deep rooted connection through past players, supporters, staff and the community. It’s through this connection that the lifeblood of the club has been kept alive. The Bullants have persevered through many struggles and due to the passion of its community it has survived once again. 

The Ants were officially formed in 1885 however our history dates back to 1882. In the early days the Bullants were quite successful claiming 5 VJFA premierships. It was in 1926 where the Bullants joined the VFA as a standalone club. The “Bullants” name was then adopted in 1930 due to their ‘swarming’ playing style. 

The bullants through the years built its success on the backs of many legendary players including Carlton’s first brownlow medalist, Bert Deacon, Hawthorn premiership coach, Alan Joyce, Collingwood captain/Bullants Hall of Fame inductee, Ray Shaw and widely known Roy Cazaly. All players including these legends, supporters, staff and the community created the sturdy foundations that continue to be built upon to this day, foundations which allowed the club to enjoy six VFA premierships


Red and white colours have been in my blood as far back that I can remember. Growing up in Reservoir a Sunday bike ride with my mates to Cramer street oval made our weekend. Collingwood on a Saturday and Preston on a Sunday. Not much homework done during the footy season. Prestons full forward John Walker was the player we wanted to see, moving from one end of the ground to the other to watch him kick goals.leading goal kicker 4 years in a row, 1965 he kicked 116 goals. He brought people through the gates, the colours of the bullants, red and white beamed energy, enthusiasm and gave the community a breath of fresh air.

Great VFA days toughskilful and never say die attitudes.I dreamed of playing for Preston and Collingwood. I loved the footy. Never thinking that in 1973 I would be given a chance to join Preston and play with some of my heroes. A Skinning 70kg player playing against men, hard nosed senior players. It was tough but the way the senior group of players looked after me was incredible.

The Bullants spirit, the supporters and community backed the Bullants by having big crowds every week, yes they travelled far and wide. Returning in 1982 for 3 successful years, 2 premierships the Preston Football Club continued to support their followers, sure success helps, but the area around Preston was alive.

The community had a centrepiece-cramer street oval. By playing or coaching for only 4 years, it feels like a life time, it was, it was all a local boy wanted. The Bullant name, a huge part of the VFA/VFL history. Lets get the club up and running, the community need to see the red & white jumper back to where it belongs. Cheers up the Ants,

Historical Overview

Club Founded
Although not officially founded until 1885, the history of the Northern Bullants dates back 139 years.
VFA Joined
Prior to 1926 the Bullants were competing in the VJFA where they enjoyed an array of success. It was in 1926 where they made the jump VFA allowing them to compete against many Victorian elite teams.
Bullants name adopted
The Bullants were infamously known to have a 'swarming playstyle'. Prior to the 1930's however they didn't carry the Bullants name. It was after the connection was made between the swarming playstyle and bullants that the name was adopted.
1930 - 1990
Legendary Players
The Bullants were home to many legendary football players. Players like Bert Deacon, Alan Joyce, Ray Shaw and Roy Cazaly. These players are responsible for building the rich history that the bullants now know.
Carlton affiliation
An affiliation which was mutually beneficial was created which saw the Bullants achieve multiple grand final appearances. This affiliation saw players like Kade Simpson, David Teague and even Chris Judd play for the club.
The Rebuild
After a unprecedented year brought upon the world by Covid-19, many organisations have struggled. This struggle saw the end to the Bullants-Carlton affiliation. This has now lead to the re-introduction of the historical Bullants name.