FOUR new directors will be taking over affairs at Winsford United.

Former Winsford Over 3 committee members, who have recently taken up positions as the Winsford United youth committee following the two clubs joining forces, will be picking up the reins for both businesses – Winsford United Ltd and the football ground, Barton Stadium.

In the agreement after ‘a period’ of negotiations, Michael Unwin is to become the new chairman, Georgina Smith the new vice-chairman, Sean Dooley the new treasurer.

Michael Dawson will work alongside current secretary Steve Mckenna with the understanding he will take sole charge of the role at the end of the season.

Commercial director Karl Woodward remains in place, but current chairman Anthony Duckworth and vice-chairman Ray Duckworth will step down from their management positions on February 1.

A statement issued by the club reads: “All operational, financial and compliance management will now be fully controlled by the four new directors as well as Karl Woodward.

“The four new board members come with a robust and plethora of knowledge not only in football but within business itself and with a vast infrastructure of supporting volunteers whom we look forward to working closely with.”

Chairman Anthony Duckworth said: “The last seven not eight years that we have been the management of both Winsford United Ltd and Barton Stadium has been a real honour.

“We have tried in that time to achieve certain goals and believe we have done a lot of what we set out to do.

“Regardless of any singular opinions, we have only ever tried to do what’s best for the club and the community.

“The long-term ambition of both myself, Ray and Steve since taking our positions has been the handover of both the business and the site to a local junior infrastructure and give football back to the community.

“This is the way forward and further cements Barton Stadium as a hub of football in the local community that’s available to all.”

As well as the recent joining of forces with Winsford Over 3, the current board recently announced and began a groundshare agreement with Northwich Victoria.

They have listed some of the goals achieved during their time at the helm.

  • Reduced the club associated debt on the official accounts by more than £100,000
  • Invested the best part of £150,000 in club renovations, £83,000 of which was insurance money, however the rest was through fundraising and other initiatives
  • Introduced the first ever Winsford United FC Academy that competed in the elite JPL league for four seasons and reached the national semi-finals after becoming the North West champions
  • Introduced circa 35 local companies as new sponsors
  • Updated site facilities such as new rooves on the clubhouse, new electrics throughout the site, new boiler and heating system, updated the gas LPG tank requirements, installed new toilets including a disability toilet
  • Just acquired funding to replace the current floodlights and main stand roof, meaning another £130,000 of future site investment
  • By the end of 2024 a minimum of £280,000 will have been invested on site facilities

Also listed is what they have overseen from a football aspect:

  • Increased opportunities for local players, including a vast array of 16-yer-olds, including fielding a cup final team made up entirely of Mid Cheshire based players
  • On a modest playing budget, finished in a comfortable league position in the North West Counties League Premier Division, only being relegated by the FA after refusing to laterally move to the Midland League
  • Won trophies such as Mid-Cheshire Senior Cup and the St Luke’s Cup after returning from Covide, while also reaching the semi-final of the Cheshire Senior Cup/NWCFL Cups, beating an array of higher ranks teams
  • Increased links within the football pyramid infrastructure, offering opportunities for our players to progress consistently