The following description and history of the Junior game is taken from the Scottish Football Assocation website
"Junior football is as old as the Association game itself, although the expression is a peculiarly Scottish one. 'Junior football' in Scotland does not refer to youth matches. There are no age restrictions in junior football and the term probably originated as a reference to the grade of the clubs, rather than the players. The top clubs in the country were the 'senior' clubs; logically, therefore, those in the next grade down were the 'juniors'.
The difference only really began to matter when junior clubs began to form themselves into associations and compete for cups. It then became necessary to draw up rules to determine who could take part. Initially, associations were local in nature (being confined to a particular town or small community) and they were free to make up their own eligibility rules. Normally, however, senior players were debarred from competing, a senior usually being defined as someone who had taken part in a recognised senior cup tie (there were no leagues at the time) within the previous so many seasons. A player who was regarded as a senior could only play junior football if he was "reinstated", a rule which still applies today.
Records are patchy but the earliest cup competition for juniors was probably the Ayr Cup, in 1880/81. However, its claim to be the first truly junior competition is suspect since it was organised by Ayr FC and there was probably no junior football association (JFA). The first proper JFA - ie an association formed and run by the clubs themselves - was almost certainly the Greenock and District, formed in April 1882. A competition was organised for 1882/83 and a club named Armadale won the badges (it is not known if there was a cup at this time).
Over the next few years local JFAs mushroomed in Scotland, a process which was boosted even further in 1886 with the formation of the national SJFA. This was because, in its early days, only JFAs (and not clubs) could join. In order to take part in the prestigious national cup competition, clubs had first to be members of their local JFA. Many local junior associations sprang up in response to this requirement. Junior leagues - the first of which was the Lanarkshire - began to appear in 1891/92, a year after the inception of the senior Scottish League. This structure remained largely in place until after the Second World War.
From the 1950s onwards, however, the social revolution sweeping the country led to a decrease in interest in the junior game and, in turn, to the death of legions of clubs. A proliferation of entertainment attractions for people, and the introduction and impact of television saw many rivals to junior football. In addition, the communities from which junior football had sprung were broken up. In the inner cities the population was reduced in the belief that it would alleviate poor sanitary conditions and overcrowding. The heavy industries of Scotland were run-down, which further led to the death of viable communities, especially those reliant on the mining industry. Indeed, many junior clubs have disappeared because not enough people were prepared to become involved in committees, and not just because of finances.
This problem was of course not confined to the junior world, nor indeed to Scotland, and football's response was to institute an inquiry into the state of the game in the UK. The result was the Chester Report, published in 1966, which recommended sweeping changes in the structure of the game. At the time the report was largely ignored by the senior bodies but was implemented by the juniors with effect from season 1968/69. The traditional leagues and associations disappeared and all junior football came under the direct jurisdiction of the SJFA. The old county structure was replaced by six regional committees - Ayrshire, Central, East, Fife, Midlands (now Tayside) and North - responsible for the organisation of competitions within the region. This is the structure which exists today.
Whilst all the old leagues and most of the cup competitions are no longer with us, the "blue riband" - the Scottish Junior Cup, which was competed for during both wars - remains. Auchinleck Talbot have won the cup, now sponsored by OVD, the most times (6)."