A massive thank you to our volunteers, our staff, supporters, managers and players at all levels and we sincerely hope that 2017 has been a successful and healthy year for you all. Life has a habit of kicking you when you are down and when least expected and for those that have lost loved ones during 2017 our sympathy and sincere wishes that the memories you hold will allow you to think fondly of them and that you can try and move on in life without them despite life not ever seemingly being the same again.
Our Junior Section have a new impetus this season following the success of the first 6-years since it was formed and to those heavily involved in the Juniors Section boys and girls teams a huge thank you. Our U21, our reserves and first team have all had their ups and downs this year but clearly, the bringing of Central Midlands League Step 7 football to Inkersall Rd was a huge plus, thanks in particular to Lee Cook and Phil Greaves and the lads for their efforts. This now provides a series of stepping stones from U21/Reserves/First Team football. Nothing would give me more pleasure than seeing a first team of in the main local lads but the Northern Counties Eastern League Step 5 football is now perhaps at it’s most competitive since I became Chairman in 2007.
With over 30-contracted players in the league and 10 or so clubs spending on players wages and expenses in excess of £1000 per week and much more than we have available here, then we have to be realistic as to the make up of our first team Step 5 squad and where we can expect to finish/compete in the league. Having a budget in the lower half of the league perhaps means a lower half league placing is to be expected. However, Brett, Paul and Bow think otherwise and their unrelenting effort will I am sure in the future defy this financial logic as they have achieved in their first 2 seasons finishing 8th and 6th in the NCEL Prem.
I hope all 3 remain at the club for a very long time to come as I do Lee and Phil along with Joe and Mark at U21 level where we can start once again to rebuild the ethos that has held us in good stead over recent years. That ethos is about getting players wanting to play for the club, for The Trojans and to enjoy their football at our first class facilities with hard work and commitment being a plenty.
Off the pitch, where clubs stability factor come from or not, our aim is to get the football club self financing. The way we see that is by getting the clubhouse utilised more and more. Ele and her staff do a sterling job and recognition of the quality of the service provided is the constant praising from customers and visitors alike and the 5 star food hygiene rating that Ele worked so hard for the club to attain is one of a few such ratings in non-league football. Our clubhouse is available for functions and parties so please spread the word for us.
We have two options as regards possible major facilities enhancements and that is to seek grants for the laying of a 4G surface for our main pitch or pursue the same for training and facilities for all teams in our club and the local community with a 4G facility at the side of the main ground. Either option would take a huge investment and we are trying to move these initiatives forward with the regulatory bodies. Our thoughts are that all revenue raised from the hiring of and 4G pitch facilities would be ploughed back in to the maintenance and to enhance those facilities further but with the receipts from the clubhouse bar and café going to help fund the club that is still running at a loss but is offset by the raising of sponsorship from HKL Specialists and also to a lesser degree other smaller sponsorship in flow that in total account for 50% of the clubs takings.
We have lesser scaled plans for the new toilet block/shop replacing the old external toilet block. We aim to extend the clubhouse and re-site/build the Disabled/Elderly Stand adjacent the Tower – all as we see it bettering the facilities for the fans and for those perhaps more in need of help than others.
I have suggested that there may be opportunities for people/companies to join our committee and come alongside me to take the club forward with our landlords the Staveley Miners Welfare being nothing but supportive in the last 11-years allowing us to get on with providing what the institution is here for, to provide for the welfare of the local community which is key to our club. With this my 11th season I am pondering the next stage of development for Staveley MWFC and all concerned. I can’t fulfil all the aims and objectives as described above alone and my offer as we go into 2018 is for anybody/company who may be interested in the above, coming along for a chat with me to talk about our clubs future. Irrespective of the latter, I will try and continue to develop the club as it has in the last 11-seasons but there is so much opportunity and exciting things we could do for the Juniors/Community, that perhaps a Group of like minded people would achieve the long term aims and objectives quicker than my singular plan. However, the plan remains irrespective of the latter.
Input into football clubs arises from differing motives. For the love of the game, to help others and families and friends, to see their son/daughters play football and develop and for some its about money, but the people that is the life-line of non-league clubs are the “volunteers” – at Juniors and Senior Level and to our special volunteers, a massive massive thank you for without your help we would simply fail.
2018 awaits, I hope it is for the benefit of you all, that good health and well being reaches you and your family members and friends and let’s hope The Trojans can once again continue to move forward at every single level on the pitch and of course we can all do so together as a club off the pitch.
A Happy New Year.