Witham feel the financial pinch of postponed fixtures

Witham chairman Tony Last.

Witham chairman Tony Last.

First published in Sport

Witham Town chairman Tony Last has said the club is feeling the financial pinch of having home games postponed.

A waterlogged Village Glass Stadium pitch has seen every home game called-off since Witham beat Ryman League division one north leaders VCD Athletic there on December 7.

Garry Kimble’s team have played just two games – at Ware and Soham Town Rangers – since then and now have up to eight games in hand on sides around them in the promotion race.

It could be making a severe dent in Town’s hopes of going up as their players will face a punishing schedule of fixtures towards the end of the season and Last, who is also the club secretary, said they now have just two free Tuesdays between now and the end of the campaign.

But it’s not just the league table where it is hitting Witham as the lack of home action, with no gate receipts or food, drink and programme sales, mean Town are being struck in the pocket as well.

However, bills still need to be paid and Last is just thankful that Witham Town has a vibrant social club.

He said: “The social side is what is keeping the football afloat.

“We are lucky that we have a big club that has functions otherwise we would be under.

“How other teams in our league that don’t have that backup are getting by, I don’t know.

“I have no idea how they are keeping going because things like rates still need to be paid.”

Witham will hope to at least get some action this weekend as they have an away day in Norfolk when they head to Wroxham in division one north tomorrow (kick-off 3pm).

Last said that the players have been training on an artificial pitch in Laindon during the recent wet spell, when they have been making contributions to the cost of getting sessions on there.

A local derby will follow the game at Wroxham as Maldon and Tiptree visit the Village Glass Stadium on Tuesday (kick-off 7.45pm) and the club will be hoping for some drier conditions.

The Town chairman said plenty of work has been done on the pitch to try to get games on, but the quantity of water has defeated their efforts.

He added: “We’ve had different referees do inspections and they’ve all said the same thing.

“Some haven’t even had to walk out on to the surface to say that we can’t play.

“The drain has been like Niagra Falls, but the land around is saturated and it just can’t keep up with it.”

Witham Town are looking for a new commercial manager.

It will be a commission-based role and anyone interested can contact manager Garry Kimble on 07813 844954.

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