CHAIRMAN’S UPDATE – 1 AUGUST 20
During the last couple of months we have all faced challenging times on a personal and work related level. Hopefully the worst of the pandemic is over but there is still a risk to all of us so we must follow the social distancing rules.
I would now like to keep you updated on the health of the club. From a financial point of view the club has remained in a good position. We have taken advantage of applying for all the available grants and I’m glad to report that we have been successful in all of them.
The club and clubhouse has remained ‘mothballed’ and we have had a number of working party days where up to 20 supporters/staff have attended to help out by making the clubhouse and ground a better place for you all to visit. Many thanks to you all that have given their valuable time to the club.
Our academy continued to operate with the scholars working from home on their education part of the course with Lloyd and Bully overseeing them to ensure they were able to complete this year’s programme.
You will have read that Bully made the decision to step down as assistant manager so that he can concentrate on his full time role in the club academy. He will still be around to help the first team if required. Ricky has appointed Mitch Austin as a replacement for Bully and we welcome him to WWR.
Ricky has been actively working on player selection for this coming season and has been successful in signing some very experienced players who have played at our level and higher to complement the existing players that will remain at St Ives Town. Full details can be found on the web site or via social media.
I previously informed you of the clubs ambitions to install a 3G pitch and redevelop the club house at WWR. The Board has agreed that Paul, Mark and I will temporarily cease having any involvement in the day to day running of the club which will enable us to concentrate fully on the redevelopment.
We invited three companies to quote to carry out the installation of the new 3G pitch. All three have visited WWR and we are now collating their responses and analysing their quotes. We have also invited a number of floodlight companies to quote for the installation of new LED floodlights. We hope to appoint the successful companies in the autumn to allow work to commence at the end of the new season.
You will have read in the press that non-league football can start under strict government guidelines. The summary of this is as follows;-
Friendlies can be played during the month of August behind closed doors. Friendlies can be played in September which supporters are allowed to attend (Subject to government and FA final approval)
Our season in the Southern League is due to commence on Saturday 19th September and in order to allow all the games to take place it has been extended to 8th May 2021. The FA Cup is due to start on the 1st September. This year it will be one game of 90 minutes followed by a penalty shoot out. There will be no replays or extra time.
We should enter the FA Cup at the First Qualifying round on 22nd September. We should also enter the First Qualifying round of the FA Trophy on 26th September.
The Southern League has decided to suspend the League Cup for the 2020-2021 season to allow all the League games to be played.
There are strict government guidelines regarding the return of football for the safety of us all. Social distancing will be in force. Anyone entering the club house will be required to give their name and telephone number for track and trace reasons. There will be a queuing system at the bar and a separate in and out entrance to the club house. There will also be a reduced menu at the café bar.
In the interest of everybody’s safety can I please request that you all to adhere to these guidelines as these are in place to protect all that enters St Ives Town FC.
The guidelines also state that we need to have a Covid 19 Officer – Marina Howlett has been appointed and a Covid Health & Safety Officer – Nigel Howlett has been appointed. Can you please follow their instructions when in the ground.
Ricky has agreed the following friendlies of which, unfortunately, are all to be played behind closed doors unless the Government changes its ruling.
Saturday 15th August – Hayes & Yeading (h) 3pm
Tuesday 18th August – Northampton Town (h) 7.30pm
Saturday 22nd August – St Neots Town (h) 3pm
Tuesday 25th August – Godmanchester Rovers (a) 7.45pm
Saturday 29th August – Kettering Town (h) 3pm
Tuesday 1st September – Soham Town Rangers (h) 7.45pm
Saturday 5th September – TBA
Tuesday 8th September – Kempston Rovers (a) 7.45pm
Saturday 12th September – Gainsborough Trinity (a) 3pm
Keep safe every body.