Big changes in the Town boardroom

RESIGNATION -- former Town chief executive Liz Morley

RESIGNATION -- former Town chief executive Liz Morley

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THE CHAIRMAN of Hucknall Town says the ‘slate is now wiped clean’ — after more changes in the boardroom at Watnall Road.

Businessman Derek Blow climbed into the hotseat at Town in May alongside new manager Brett Marshall.

His arrival came after the acrimonious departure of the previous, short-lived regime involving bus-company owner Steve Greaves and former Derby County player Michael Johnson.

Blow immediately promised big changes for The Yellows, who have been involved in relegation battles for the last four years on the field and hit hard with financial problems off the field that have threatened to bring the club to its knees.

Now, on the eve of Town’s first pre-season friendly tomorrow at home to Lincoln City, it has been confirmed that chief executive Liz Morley has resigned.

There have also been major changes on the committee as the club look to lay the foundations for a bid to bring success back to Watnall Road.

On their website, Town thanked Morley for her work during ‘two difficult years’.

“Liz offered her resignation three times,” said Blow. “Twice I rejected it but on the third occasion I accepted it.

“She has done a job for the club in difficult circumstances. We wish her all the best and she is always welcome at the club.”

Morley has been unavailable for comment this week. But she played a major role at Town.

She was key in brokering a deal with Revenue and Customs to pay off a shock VAT debt of almost £90,000.

She was also involved in bringing Marshall to the club after he quit Northern Counties East League champions Retford United.

Now her role will be filled by new general manager Steve Peat, who will combine the position with that of commercial manager.

He works as a sales manager by day for Mansfield firm Zoomkarts and his job at Town is on a voluntary basis. Morley was paid for her services.

Blow says that the time has now come to move forward and make sure the set-up behind the scenes makes it possible for Marshall and his players to progress in the upcoming Evo-Stik Northern Premier League, Division One South season, which kicks off next month.

“We need new faces, new ideas and new blood,” added Blow, who is the man behind the D.I.Blow chain of opticians, including stores in Hucknall and Bulwell.

“We cannot go on in the same old way.

“In the past there has been a lot of talk about changes at the club and they haven’t happened.

“Well, I’ve made it happen.”

As well as Blow and Peat, new members of the committee are Ivan Sanders, who comes in as hospitality manager, Amanda Thorley as media manager, Graham Taylor, who is assistant manager to boss Marshall and David Palin, of Worksop Van Hire, who will sponsor the Nike kit next season.

Remaining on the committee are Dawn Scotney (fundraising), Andy Johnson, Brian Reece (vice-chairman) and Tony Knowles (football secretary).

Former chairman Brian Holmes remains as club president.

“We have a lot of work to do with just a few people to do it,” said Blow.

“There has been a lot of negativity around the club . But we are trying to make things more positive and doing our best.

“I am asking that everyone pulls together in the same direction.

“I cannot wait for the season to start. It’s why I enjoy doing this.

“The easiest thing for me would have been to say no to Hucknall Town and go an sit in the stands at Nottingham Forest.

“But this is a challenge and I am relishing it.”

YELLOWS fans are waiting with baited breath to find out the league fixture-list for next season.

But the draws have already been made for the first stages of both the FA Cup and the FA Trophy — and in both The Yellows will kick off their campaigns at home.

In the FA Cup, Town will play Retford United — manager Marshall’s former club — if The Badgers can get past Bardon Hills Sports, of Leicestershire.

The First Preliminary Round match will be on Saturday September 15 (3 pm).

Town obviously hold fond memories of the Trophy having played in the final at Villa Park in 2005.

They will start their bid for glory in the First Round against Market Drayton Town on Saturday September 8 (3 pm).

BOSSES at Watnall Road say the playing squad for the new season is beginning to take shape and many of the 16 players already signed will be on show in the friendly against Lincoln City.

Attentions then switch to a local derby with Linby Colliery Welfare at their Church Lane ground in Linby next Wednesday (July 18, 7 pm).

A high-profile local derby has also been slotted into the pre-season list with The Yellows hosting Mansfield Town on Monday July 23.

Other games lined up are: Greenwood Meadows (away, Saturday July 21 3 pm), Gainsborough Trinity (away, Tuesday July 24, 7.45 pm), Glapwell (away, Thursday July 26, 7.45 pm), Matlock Town (home, Sunday July 29, 3 pm), Clipstone Miners Welfare (away, Wednesday August 1, 7.45 pm), Eastwood Town (away, Saturday August 4, 3 pm), Ilkeston (home, Tuesday August 7, 7.45 pm) and Worksop Town (home, Saturday August 11, 3 pm).

HUCKNALL Town are on the lookout for a voluntary safety officer and new match-day stewards.

Full training will be provided. Anyone interested is asked to e-mail committee@hucknalltownfc.com.