Exmouth Town chairman looking forward to welcoming back supporters to Southern Road

PUBLISHED: 11:00 21 August 2020

Exmouth Town at home to Barnstaple in a FA Cup game. Ref exsp 33 19TI 0143. Picture: Terry Ife

Exmouth Town at home to Barnstaple in a FA Cup game. Ref exsp 33 19TI 0143. Picture: Terry Ife


Stuart Shaw is into his third year of being Exmouth Town chairman and he is so looking forward to the coming season.

Exmouth Town players celebrate one of their seven goals in the win over Chipping Sodbury Town. Picture: ROB CHIDGEYExmouth Town players celebrate one of their seven goals in the win over Chipping Sodbury Town. Picture: ROB CHIDGEY

That said, he is quick to say that the past few months have been very difficult for all concerned, but he says he is so keen to say a massive ‘thank you’ to the army of people who have been working so hard on so many different projects over the past six months.

It’s something that causes the chairman so much pride and he says: He says: “I am in awe of the likes of Adam Fitzgerald (Town vice chairman), someone who, to this day, I regard as one of the best signings I could have made as chairman! He knows the club inside out and is a driving force in so much of the positivity around the club.”

He continued: “The endless energy of the MTC and others has meant that so much has bene done by so many at Southern Road and the only crying shame right now is that the rank and file who want to come and watch ‘their’ team, are not able to do so given the current pandemic guidelines and restrictions.”

Tomorrow, (Saturday, August 22) Town entertain Saltash United in a pre-season friendly that will now be seen by Town supporters following the news, earlier this week via the government and the Football Association that supporters can begin to attend matches, albeit with certain Covid-19 measures in place.

The Town chairman says: “We had originally taken the painful decision to close the bar on Saturday ahead of the match and, in keeping with the current requirements from the government, we were set to keep the entrance gates firmly locked.

“I can assure supporters this is not something we wanted to do. However, we felt, at the time of making that tough decision that it was the only way we could be shown to be ‘doing it the right way’.

“Some things in life are more than our beautiful game and the health of our supporters and making sure that all the Covid-19 protocols are respected is of paramount importance.”

However, and happily, news has broken in the past few days that clubs can now begin to welcome back supporters and the Town chairman says: “I am so pleased with this decision. There are still guidelines and protocol to follow, and supporters can rest assured that, at Town, we shall be following the guidelines to the letter.

“We have also taken the deicison to make it a ‘pay what you want’ fixture as we feel it is one small way of saying that massive thank you, to the supporters, businesses and local community who have stood shoulder to shoulder with us through all this Coronavirus pandemic situation.”

Kick-off tomorrow at Southern Road is at 3pm and supporters are advised that, if they want to be sure of being allowed in, then early arrival is important for the club are restricted, at this stage, to 150 fans and 15 of those places are reserved for travelling supporters of Saltash United. That means it’ll be the first 135 Town supporters that turn up who will gain entry to the ground.

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