STRATFORD Town have welcomed two new local business owners to the club’s board.
Paul West and Steve Sykes have joined the board and bring with them vast commercial experience.
West is a former professional footballer who turned out for Port Vale, Bradford City, Wigan Athletic and Morecambe.
Since retirement from full-time football in 1998, he played more than 400 games for Evesham United and would go on to manage the club for five years, guiding them to the FA Cup first round for the first time in their 100-year history.
And Sykes has also been deeply involved with Midlands non-league football, playing for a number of teams including AP Leamington before turning to management where he took charge of Alveston and Racing Club Warwick.
He started Bidford-based Proco – a global laminates business – 12 years ago having worked extensively in China and Europe. The business acquired American company RSG in 2018.
Sykes has been a key member of Stratford Town’s backroom team over the past few years and his work with the club’s young players is set to continue with his new role overseeing talent development.
West said: “I have had some fantastic times in my football career both on and off the pitch. I’ve had the opportunity to work at all levels within the game but, more importantly, I have had the privilege to meet so many fantastic people.
“I’m looking forward to sharing my knowledge and experience here at Stratford Town and if that can help anyone in any way – especially young players and managers – then I’ll be delighted.
“The first thing you notice when you walk into the club is the feeling of goodwill and how lovely the people are around the place.
“I have always been made very welcome here and that’s something that I have never taken for granted.
“What chairman Jed McCrory has created and implemented here in terms of the structure of the club – from the first team all the way through the academy, juniors, community work and education programme – is a massive credit to him, his fellow directors, staff, volunteers and supporters.
“Stratford Town is now in a great position, not only being financially stable but having an owner who has an unbelievable appetite to take this club further.”
Sykes added: “This is an exciting time to be involved with the football club.
“I have been working with our younger players for a number of years and that is now paying dividends with a number of our homegrown stars on the verge of the first team while others have taken up football scholarships in America.”