Old Boy repieved after league's AGM

SOCCER: The Metaltec SIL has given Bramford Road Old Boys a reprieve.At last week's annual general meeting the Ipswich-based club were placed in Division Three for the coming season after finishing second from bottom of the Second Division in 2001/02.


THE Metaltec SIL has given Bramford Road Old Boys a reprieve.

At last week's annual general meeting the Ipswich-based club were placed in Division Three for the coming season after finishing second from bottom of the Second Division in 2001/02.

But they are now back in the Second Division. League chief executive Alan Gorham said today: "We made an error, which was pointed out in a letter I received from Bramford Road Old Boys two days after the meeting. We are pleased to have put matters right."

Problems arose because of the withdrawal during last season of Saracens from the Second Division. Salvation Army, who finished fourth in the Third Division last season, were originally promoted but they have now been placed back in Division Three.

Gorham's chief executive role is to be reduced from season 2003/04. A registrations co-ordinator is to be appointed and also a fixture and referees' appointments secretary.

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"I am the wrong side of 65 and this move is best for the league," said Gorham, who has appointed secretary in 1974 and was made chief executive in 1997.

"It is no good having just one person who knows everything. And we want our administration to remain as efficient as possible."

Gorham is to stay as chief executive with a reduced work load. "I have no intention of dropping out," he said. "I would hate to walk away from football."

Mary Woodley, the current treasurer, is set to take the registration co-ordinator's role, while the fixture and referees' appointment post is set to be filled before the end of this season.

All posts will run on a three-year basis including those of chairman and vice chairman. A newly-designed computer system is being installed that will allow three people to operate it at once.

There was a full representation of league clubs at the league's annual general meeting held at Ransoms Sports and Social Club.

In his report Gorham thanked League Sponsors Metaltec Engineering, Omnico and Ryan Insurance for their financial support and announced Omnico's sister company Specialised Fixing would now sponsor the Senior and Junior Sportsmanship Awards.

He praised Walsham-le-Willows and Dennington United – winners of the Senior and Junior Club of the Year Awards – and also Grundisburgh and Thurston, who won the Sportsmanship awards, and all officials and club secretaries for their hard work throughout the season.

Alan MacDougall was commended for heading a series of meetings to improve administration and Gorham also thanked treasurer Mary Woodley for her sterling work with the new Words Computer Programme and said the newly-designed system would help continue the league as one of the best run in the country.

Agilent Technologies and John Bull Reserves had withdrawn from the league within a few days of the meeting and the Gorham warned clubs of the danger of letting players' financial problems get out of hand and advised officials to consult with the league at an early stage.

Gorham made special mention of the most poignant moment in his long career with the league when he recalled standing at the Presentation Evening for a minutes' silence in memory of the untimely deaths of young players from AFC Hoxne, Elmswell and Needham Market.

The chief executive said the league would continue to use referees from the Bury and Lowestoft areas and three Essex-based officials would also be welcomed next season with the Senior Division getting underway on August 17.

The media were thanked for their support which saw the Ominco Cup final draw a record crowd and Gorham closed with the hope that the SIL would go on to remain a very well run league.

The treasurer reported a healthy profit of over £1,600 over the season, which would go into the accumulated fund which now stands at £13,850.

In the election of officers Peter Cocker, who stood in last season after the resignation of chairman Maurice Scrivener, proposed Mr Bob Coleman as president for the forthcoming season which was unanimously agreed from the floor.

Cocker then proposed Peter Davey as the new chairman which was also accepted and Davey then proposed Peter Cocker as vice-chairman which was also seconded.

Eric Dickerson and John Thorndyke were re-elected to the management committee. Linda Norton was confirmed also after her election mid-term last season and Dean Smith was also elected on the night leaving one position vacant.

President Bob Coleman presented the A J Pells Senior secretary of the year trophy to Eric Cousins of Stonham Aspal and the G T Scopes to Carol Fuller of AFC Debenham.

Guest at the meeting were Suffolk County FA President Gordon Blake and new county secretary Martin Head who made The SCFA Fairplay Award of £300 to Claydon FC and the runners-up certificate to new club Cockfield Reserves.

The two county officials also made special presentations to president Bob Coleman and Rocky Morgan of Claydon FC for their long service to football.

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