Whistle to blow on youth league
7:00am Fri Mar 10, 2017
The New Newark Youth League will fold after 18 years.
This season will see the final matches played in the New Newark Youth League (NNYFL) after it decided to fold after 18 years.
Clubs agreed to pursue a possible merger with the Young Elizabethan League, which is based predominantly in Nottingham.
The decision to fold was made after no volunteers came forward to take key committee positions, despite continued efforts in recent years.
Glenn Cobb, the league’s chairman, Ted Harris, registrar and fixture secretary, and Alan Smith, the treasurer, are all stepping down at the end of the season.
Cobb said the decision for the league, which began in the 1998-99 season, to end was dispiriting.
“The committee is bitterly dis- appointed that we could not find anyone to come forward to take on the four roles,” he said.
“We have been trying for the past two or thee years but have not had anyone come forward.
“You find that people are happy to volunteer with their own clubs and their own children, but not for the overall picture.
“Having said that, what we are now proposing for the members is the next best thing.”
Cobb was pleased with what had been achieved by the league since its inception and said a lot of talented youngsters had come through the system.
“We are very proud of what has been accomplished,” he said.
“There are around 1,500 children playing junior football, from seven to 13, and when you count adults that is 3,000 people involved on a Saturday.
“The league has given a good platform to develop a child’s social side and make friends as well as produce good footballers.
“I was especially proud when we had the representative squads representing the area. One season we had three teams go out to play.
“We have our cup finals at the end of the season, which have always been great occasions, and will make sure they are particularly special this year.”
Regionalised Newark league
At an open meeting of the league’s members, current members met with Les Howie, chairman of the Elizabethan league, who gave an indication of how they could be integrated in the league.
Plans include creating a regionalised Newark league, with teams in the current NNYFL playing each other while also having the chance to move within the existing leagues and play further afield.
It is hoped teams from Southwell, Lowdham and Bingham, who don’t have teams in the NNYFL, might be tempted to join a localised division.
Discussions have also taken place about setting up a Newark-based committee to deal with local isuues, including welfare and referees.
Individual clubs will discuss the matter with their board and feedback on their plans for the next season.