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Jones ends an era at Emerald Park

PUBLISHED: 10:04 16 May 2008 | UPDATED: 09:15 11 May 2010

AN ERA has ended at Gorleston Football Club with Jimmy Jones stepping down as chairman after more than 20 years in the role.

The search is now on for a successor to fill the club stalwart's shoes before the start of next season.

AN ERA has ended at Gorleston Football Club with Jimmy Jones stepping down as chairman after more than 20 years in the role.

The search is now on for a successor to fill the club stalwart's shoes before the start of next season.

After some lean years Jones is handing over the reins with the club in better shape than for some time.

The first team were just a few points short of promotion and reached the final of the Ridgeons League Cup, with the reserves winning the Division Six title in the Dolphin Autos Anglian Combination.

“I am leaving on a good note, the club has had an excellent season and the first team were only four points from going up,” said Jones. “If we could have hung on to a couple more players we could have got promoted - all the management and coaching staff have done a really great job. The future looks very rosy and the old feeling is back at the club, so it is a good note to go out on.”

The Greens have been a passion for the 69-year-old businessman since his first spell as chairman in 1972. He left 10 years later to join the board of Norwich City before returning to the club in 1996.

It was an association that began when Jones was persuaded to attend a match at Emerald Park by Gorleston player Malcolm Turner.

“Malcolm was working for me at the Pleasure Beach at the time and got me to go along. I was given a seat on the bench to really get me feeling involved.

“We won the Eastern Counties League during my first season as chairman by eight points, but I would not allow any celebrations until it was mathematically certain we were champions.

“When I came back to Gorleston in 1996 I was only supposed to be there until they found a replacement at the end of the season, but ended up there for 12 years.

“I have had a great time during my two spells as chairman, but the time is right for a younger person with new ideas.”

Other highlights include the club's appearances in the Norfolk Senior Cup final, particularly the 4-0 victory over arch-rivals Great Yarmouth in 2001, with the Green's relegation from the Ridgeons League Premiership Division four years ago among the lows.

After years as the public face of the club Jones is looking forward to taking a back seat, but will retain his close ties as life president. “The only games I have missed were when I was on holiday or ill, and I will still be attending all the home matches,” he added

“It will give me more time to spend with my family and to follow the youth and reserve teams more closely. We have some good youngsters and I would like to see a bit more of them.”

With money at a premium, Jones will continue to use his high public profile to raise cash for the club.

He is organising a spring golf tournament at Caldecott Hall in Fritton, and any teams interested in taking part can call him on 07885216101.


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