Join-managers step down at Barnoldswick Town

STEPPING DOWN: Stewart Airdrie
STEPPING DOWN: Stewart Airdrie
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DEPARTING Barnoldswick Town boss Ben Hall has looked back on his tenure at Victory Park with a smile.

Both Hall and Stewart Airdrie (pictured) announced earlier this week they will be stepping down from their managerial positions, a decision which saw the club appoint Paul Fildes, who will work alongside remaining boss Kevin Richardson in the hot seat.

The popular trio combined to produce the most fruitful and harmonious period in the club’s history, invigorating and enriching Town on a journey that took them from the West Lancashire League to a fourth place finish in the North West Counties Premier Division.

“It’s been an absolute privilege to manage such a fantastic club and we’ve enjoyed unbelievable success,” beamed Hall.

“We’ve climbed from the West Lancs League into the North West Counties Premier Division so it’s been an astonishing journey for Barnoldswick Town.

“There’s been a number of highlights.

“Winning promotion is definitely up there; getting to the County Cup final is another that stands out and also finishing fourth in the Premier Division. I’ve had a magnificent time and I’ve got some great memories.”

Hall added: “The future is very bright for the club. They’ve got good people involved and good managers taking over.

“You couldn’t wish to manage a better club and we’ve been challenging for honours every season I’ve been here. Two of my pals have taken over so that continuity is there for the club.”

Hall admits though his decision to part company with the club was extremely difficult, the current campaign has been incredibly testing.

Hall conceded that Town had struggled for consistency this season due to injuries to key players including Robbie Smith, Spencer Jordan and Shaun Clough - a factor in why they’re 10th in the table.

“It’s difficult to leave but I know I’ve made the right decision,” Hall declared.

“Fatigue has crept in and management started to become more of a chore.

“I’d lost that motivation and that’s what happens sometimes when you’ve been giving everything for so long.

“I felt as though I wasn’t giving it my best.

“Injuries have decimated us this term and I found it tough to keep going at times. It’s been horrific. I wanted to win all the time and I was getting frustrated when we weren’t. It takes a good manager to learn that you can’t win all the time. I’ve got a family and I didn’t want it affecting my life at home.

“It’s never an easy decision to leave, in fact it was incredibly difficult. I think every manager will know where I’m coming from though. You’ve got to be 100 per cent committed and it all just got on top of me. It starts to dominate your life.

“You never know what will happen in the future so I wouldn’t want to say ‘yes’ or ‘no’ to making a return at present. At this moment in time it’s the right thing to do.”

Hall added: “I want to thank everyone at the club including the players, Stewart and Kevin, the committee and especially Ian and Lynn James, the chairman and secretary, for giving me this amazing opportunity. I hope I’ve done them proud. I’ll definitely still go to watch them every now and again.”