Shropshire Star

Ambitious Wellington Amateurs looking to fill key off-field roles

Wellington Amateurs are making real progress on and off the pitch – and are on the hunt for a new figurehead to guide them forward.

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Amateurs are flying high at the top of the West Midland League's Division One, step seven of the non-league pyramid, and believe everything is in place for the club to return to their status of yesteryear.

Everything, that is, other than a chairperson to help provide crucial business know-how and guidance to help propel the School Grove club back up the pyramid.

The club are also advertising for 10 'sporting directors' to invest and join the club, formed over 70 years ago, as a committee.

They believe the opportunity is unique to amateur football clubs and say a yearly payment of £1,500 will go towards boosting the club and in return offers the title of a sporting director, to be involved in all club affairs and entry to home games, as well as exclusive use of club facilities.

Ams director of football Mickey Baker, the former manager, believes the club have made real strides at School Grove in Oakengates in Telford.

A new £4,000 playing surface was laid over the summer, funded by a Football Foundation grant, and the ground's clubhouse was last year freshened up and re-named the Dave Gregory Clubhouse in memory of the club's former chairman – who was a champion of the club and carried out every role prior his death in 2018. A new terrace, named after popular former managers Mike Armstrong and Anthony 'Spud' Cotterill – the Army and Spud Terrace – has also opened.

First-team boss Matthew Boswell, the Shrewsbury-born former Port Vale, Sligo Rovers, Morton and Kidderminster Harriers goalkeeper, has Amateurs a point clear at the summit. A reserve adult team, AMS FC, was launched in 2020 to provide a pathway.

The ground is ready to progress, the team appears ready to progress, now Baker hopes an ambitious figurehead will come on board after Paul Gregory – son of Dave – stepped down 18 months ago.

Baker explained: "We did all of the grading works pre-Covid, we moved the railing, built female changing rooms and provided a separate officials' path to the pitch.

"With the chairman position we've had a little bit of interest. We're looking for someone with a commercial background who knows how to run a business, it doesn't have to be anybody who has worked running a football club.

"It is someone who ideally can advise for us to increase sponsorship and if there is a disagreement in the committee, to have a chairman to make a decision, someone business savvy to guide the committee and club and take us forward.

"The main point is we want the club to be self-sufficient, it's about know-how and guidance."

Baker added: "Between Lee Mitchell the vice-chairman, myself and secretary Mark Conway we've ran it ourselves and had to do so like a business.

"I think if Dave was still alive he would be buzzing at how things are with the club at the moment.

"We re-opened the clubhouse last year and our former management team Mike and Spud have been coming down to quite a few games, they were Dave's men.

"It's really nice to see, we're trying to get the club back to where it was. It went downhill and got into a bit of rut but we're building it up now."

The ground is fit for step five football, as high as the Midland Premier League. Promotion this season would go to Midland League Division One, or in another geographical direction to North West Counties League.

John Hamer, of local business Hamer Leisure, backed the club as stadium name sponsorship and also agreed to provide matchday tracksuits.

Former boss Baker stepped back due to work commitments in April 2021 but was keen to remain around the club, watching games and bringing players in. Tom White was in charge to oversee a first trophy in more than a decade with the 2022 Shropshire Challenge Cup before he left for neighbours Dawley Town and Boswell stepped up from the Development squad after title success in the Midland Junior Premier League at under-18s.

Key recruits of Boswell's include his son Jack, also a keeper, from Ellesmere Rangers, as well as Will Evans. Whitchurch Alport's Sam Yeardley checked in, alongside experienced campaigner Robbie Millington after a break from the game, as well as Sam Robinson, from Allscott.

Current top goalscorer Rune Corinaldi and Josh Wycherley were on dual registration forms from Market Drayton last season but have committed to Ams for the season and Baker believes the additions have helped take them "to the next level".

"Bos wanted to get good lads in, good characters," Baker added. "Last season was about solidifying our position in the league and trying to improve. We finished mid-table but by the last 10 games we'd shown we were second in the form table.

"We've got good lads in now who care and fight for each other and that's testament to Bos and his staff.

"I think the aim is always to get promotion and we have the team to be up there challenging.

"Dave always wanted FA Cup football at School Grove but to get that we need to be in the top eight or 10 in Division One, so we still have to wait realistically, but Allscott doing so well (in the division above) shows us what can be achieved."

Anybody interested in supporting the club or coming on board in a chairperson role or investment sporting director role can contact the club on or get in touch with Baker on 07974311507.