Our chief executive, Jason Turner, has provided an update on the future of our academy.
Should the first team not win promotion to the EFL this season the club would no longer receive academy grant aid funding, leaving an annual shortfall of more than £200k against this season’s external support.
Our board of directors are, however, committed to providing significant financial support to enable the academy to continue in a similar format to now, albeit outside the parameters of the Elite Player Performance Plan, should the club remain in the National League.
“As a board, we recognise the importance of providing a pathway for young, local players to become our potential stars of the future,” said Turner.
“We are also very aware that our supporters take great pride in the academy and the many excellent players it has produced over the years.
“It therefore gives us great pleasure to reassure fans, staff, players and parents that we will continue to have an academy next season, across all age groups, no matter which division the club finds itself in.
“Along with financial support from our owners, the academy will continue to benefit from the dedicated work of our Official Supporters’ Association whose fundraising efforts have been hugely helpful over the years.
“Following last season’s title success for our Under 18s, and the rise to prominence of Tyreace Palmer, we can all look forward to what will hopefully be a prosperous future for our youth development programme.
“Operating outside of EPPP would raise many new challenges but we are determined to tackle these head-on in the interests of providing the best possible platform for our young players.”