Saturday 9 May

We hope that this weekly update finds you and your family well as we enjoy further warm and sunny weather over this Bank Holiday weekend.

Hopefully you enjoyed something of the VE Day 75 commemorations – not what had originally been planned of course back when the early May Bank Holiday was moved to 8 May but there was plenty of evidence around the town of bunting, flags and balloons mixed with the omnipresent rainbow paintings and drawings.  In next week’s update we will report on how the Saints Community Project marked the occasion.

On the football front we featured across the back page of The Advertiser this week as the chairman interviewed about the continuing saga of how the National League season will be concluded.  Our view was made clear – this has dragged on for too long and must be brought to a close to provide certainty for clubs.  There was no way we could see play-offs going ahead and so it was no surprise that a large majority of National North and National South clubs expressed this view in last week’s poll.  At Step 2 we are more akin to Steps 3-7 where the season was declared null and void very quickly.  Perhaps clubs at Step 1 are closer to League Two with full-time contracts and immediate aspirations of league status.  Perhaps they can find a way forward that is different to National North and National South but at our level it always appeared unrealistic.  Now that play-offs are ruled out, we still await official confirmation of whether the season will be declared null and void or whether a mathematical solution will be found to achieving promotion for one or two teams.  We will keep you posted of course.

Developments around re-construction of the clubhouse are exciting.  We have now got full planning approval from South Northants Council so that is an important hurdle overcome.  There was always the chance that the health emergency could introduce delays to the planning process so it is a relief to have this behind us.  We are now working through the tender process to select a main contractor to demolish and then build the new clubhouse.  This is a formal process with various stages to work through and appointing the right contractor is crucial to achieving the outcome we want.  The proposed build time is around 9 months.

The fund-raising work of the Stand Together campaign will of course help support the re-build.  The opportunity to buy a brick is still there for a little longer.  Sales have overtaken 230 to date.  Thank you to everyone who has contributed and whose brick will feature in a commemorative wall in the new building. That day remains a little way off but is getting closer step by step.

There will be plenty more news to bring you about the clubhouse build and other matters as the weeks go by but for now, until next Saturday - stay safe, stay well.

BTFC Board