Summer message from the chairman

Phil Norman is the new chairman of Workington AFC and took time out of his ever increasing workload to speak to the club’s website, his first interview from the Chair.

Phil Norman

Appointed chairman at a recent Board meeting, how do you feel about your new role – will it be a seamless transition or will there be changes to the operation.

It is a great honour to become Chairman of Workington AFC.

After two years on the Board and the last two months as Deputy Chair I am under no illusions as to how much work is needed to run a club like Workington. Despite this I look forward to the challenge.

I am sure the transition will be smooth. I believe we have a strong Board and many of the processes put in place over the past two years will stand us in good stead going forward.

What are the specific roles of each Board member.

Les Byers and Kevin Aitken are Stadium Directors. Les is responsible for structural safety, safety legislation and audits. Kevin is responsible for stadium and pitch maintenance.

Richard Lewthwaite and Simon Collins will continue as Community Directors with Richard also taking the extra responsibility of Vice Chairman

Will the position of treasurer be filled after Howard Bouch stepped down.

Yes, Chris Root will take the Treasurer role.

The fan-base would readily praise the Board’s work last season following the disruption caused by the pandemic, what are the plans, and aims, going forward.

We would like to thank the fans for the way they responded to our various initiatives last season following two Covid affected seasons. It really felt like we were all working towards the same goal.

I think much of the progress made was down to our increased community engagement. The junior season card launch was extremely successful. We also worked much closer with the Ladies and Junior sections than in previous years. We plan to further strengthen these relationships and our aim is to make Workington AFC a true Community Club.

As we prepare for a move to a possible new stadium we need to make the most of the existing facilities at Borough Park in the meantime. I hope the fans will notice some of the areas which have been smartened up during the summer. Our aim as a Board is to provide a secure platform for a successful club both on and off the field. We will continue to look at ways of increasing incomes while keeping a close eye on costs. Sounds simple doesn’t it?

It was a popular decision to re-appoint Danny as manager, will his brief be to get promoted or is there less pressure on his shoulders for the new season.

Danny’s primary aim is to get promoted so no there won’t be less pressure than last season and I don’t think Danny would want it any other way!

Attendances were exceptionally high last season, can we maintain such support through the turnstiles or do you have a break-even gate figure to work to.

It was fantastic to see so many people at Borough Park particularly in the second half of last season. If we play attractive football and continue to make Borough Park a welcoming place to be I see no reason why we can’t maintain this.  

The previous manager often stated that promotion was his sole priority, and came ever so close to achieving it, but the two main cup competitions were not treated with the same importance – will the objectives be the same this term.

As mentioned earlier our primary objective will continue to be promotion. However, I think a good run in the cup competitions can not only provide useful income but also help to build momentum. I’ve told Danny the FA Cup 3rd Round would do!

Travel will be similar to last season in terms of mileage but transport is one of many costs that will have increased considerably and running a football club is difficult at the best of times – will there be special measures to balance the books.

Of course as a non-league club balancing the books is always our number one challenge. We face cost of living increases like everyone else but decided not to increase ticket prices. However, we are currently investigating alternative new income streams. Hopefully, we may be able to announce something soon.

Looking ahead, is the stadium project still on schedule and is there a timescale for Borough Park’s future.

Yes the stadium project is still on schedule and this is a particularly important time in determining the outcome. If it runs to plan work could start as early as next summer.

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