Always a good job to get out of the way, the club has this week signed of its accounts for the year end of 30/06/2021 and showed a profit for the first time since June 2015. This was mainly due to the substantial grants it received from the lockdown and the lack of participation in our main activity – playing football. There is a certain irony in the fact that the business of running the football club can be profitable, just as long as we do not play any football! For the first time in a good many years the club is going to have to pay a tax bill, doing out bit to help the economy recover post-pandemic.
These are worrying times we are heading into once again and I urge all of you to be cautious and thoughtful of others. We have had reports of supporters of the club testing positive this week so please do follow the government advice (what they say, not what they – allegedly – do!) and continue to wash and sanitise your hands, particularly when in crowded areas like a football match or clubhouse.
On behalf of everyone at the club I would like to pass on our best wishes to hugely popular supporter Bryn Wallis who this week was taken to hospital with an infection. Meanwhile, our turnstile operator, George, is still in hospital but is feeling considerably better and waiting for a health care package to be put in place. He is hoping to return home next week after speaking with him this morning.
The update on the plans to move to a new ground remain very similar to those shared in recent weeks, frustrating as that is. We are still awaiting a response from the planners regarding our planning application which was sent back in April 2021 and our pre-planning application for the new ground. These are challenging times we are living in, and the world is not as normal as it was two years ago with things taking longer and more patience required, but some form of communication would be good. A bit of a long shot, but to help to try and get the wheels out of the mud and things moving again we have written to HRH The Duke of Cambridge, as the president of The England Football Association, to ask for his support in helping us to get back on track with a move to a new community ground. Whether he can help, I don’t know, but we are prepared to try anything to get moving forward again.
On the pitch we welcomed Jeanmal Prosper to the club two weeks ago and his form despite nine months out of the game has been superb. So much so that Hemel Hempstead Town, from the league above, made an approach for him and he has subsequently moved to them. Another success story of the club finding a rough diamond, our management team making him a better player and enabling him to make a step up. We wish him good luck and hopefully we can soon be at the same level and entice him back to The Meadow. Our management team have moved very quickly to fill the vacancy in the squad with the signing of Roddy Collins from Kings Langley. Welcome aboard Roddy.
Our performance levels over the last few games has gone up and anyone of you at the game for our victory over a strong Truro side and draw with Harrow Borough will have enjoyed the performances. To be fair we had the best referee of the season at the game v Truro and our performance against Harrow was our best of the season, despite not being able to find the net from the numerous chances created in the second half. We go again, against the same opposition, again in the league, this time at Harrow, on Saturday.
We are now halfway through our season and the signs of a strong finish are there, so I do hope to see you at our games over the coming weeks and months, particularly heading into the festive period when we all need some fresh air and for some the chance to get away from the relatives that have moved into your house for the Christmas holiday! The clubhouse looks very festive now with a Christmas Tree donated by Bills Diner and fully decorated with some tasty decorations making it very seasonal.
Finally, there was an excellent piece in The Non-League Paper last weekend about the whole of non-league football being desperate to find volunteers and that does apply to us as well. We will soon be issuing details about an evening at the club to outline how and what supporters can get involved in, it will be a bit of a rally cry, but coming along does not commit you, I urge as many people as possible who love the club to come and find out about the specialist roles we need help with which can take a lot of pressure off existing volunteers we have with the club. Even if you cannot volunteer yourself, you might know someone who can.
I am elated that we have one new volunteer who worked with me at the club last Sunday Morning at 8am to clear up, and again on Monday morning getting Mavericks Bar cleaned and ready to serve and will be with me again this Sunday making our ground spick and span for our Ladies Team who take on Billericay Town Ladies in the Third Round of the Women’s FA Cup KO 1pm. They would be very pleased to receive your valued support because if they win this round then they could meet a Women’s Super league team, wouldn’t that be great if we could draw one of the premier giants at our club?
Thank you as always for your support, it is appreciated.