Roland Wycherley to stand down as Shrewsbury Town chairman in Paul Delves takeover

Roland Wycherley is set to call time on 25 years as Shrewsbury Town chairman, it is understood.

Paul Delves, left, is set to be the next chairman at Shrewsbury Town after negotiations to take over the club from long-standing owner and chairman Roland Wycherley MBE. Photo: Shrewsbury Town FC
Paul Delves, left, is set to be the next chairman at Shrewsbury Town after negotiations to take over the club from long-standing owner and chairman Roland Wycherley MBE. Photo: Shrewsbury Town FC

Negotiations between both parties to secure a successor to the long-serving chief are believed to have taken place in recent weeks and months and it is understood a deal has been agreed in principle.

Town released a statement on Monday "to dismiss any talk of an imminent takeover" but said the chairman had "looked to secure the safe long-term future of the" club for many years.

Local businessman Delves is managing director of stadium sponsor Montgomery Waters and chief shirt sponsor Tuffins. Like Wycherley, he is a Shrewsbury supporter.

A report in the The Sun stated the club’s valuation to be around £12million.

The change, which has yet to be officially confirmed and was set to be kept under wraps until a handover likely to come next year, marks a significant moment in the club’s history.

It is believed the chairman has been keen to ensure the club's future is in safe hands and the sale to another local businessman, who is a supporter and has Town's best interests at heart, fits the bill.

Delves' influence has grown in recent years since his businesses became the club's leading sponsors and he was appointed as a director almost two years ago.

The businessman has been a visible presence at Montgomery Waters Meadow and on the road at away fixtures.

Wycherley, who supporters credit with ensuring the club’s future thanks to his prudent backing and move to the new stadium in 2007, marked a quarter of a century as chairman this summer, when he also turned 80.

He has taken a less hands-on role in recent years with chief executive Brian Caldwell looking after day-to-day running of the club. Wycherley, who was awarded an MBE in the Queen’s honours list, has remained involved with major matters and still attends every fixture home and away.

The boyhood Town fan, born in the Castlefields area of Shrewsbury, made his money in the vending industry and took over the club in July 1996.

It remains to be seen how involved he will remain once the sale to Delves has been completed.

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