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Aylesbury United News

Youth Team Trials

Thursday 30 June 2005 - 12:00 am | Added by: Admin to Club News, First Team | Two comments |

Youth Team Trials - Aylesbury United/Aylesbury Town FC.

If you want to be part of our exciting new Youth Development programme, our team trials are at 10am on 9th/16th/23rd July at Bowlers Field, Quarrendon and Meadowcroft Community Centre.

Please e-mail your details in advance to or telephone 01296 436350.

New Commercial Director

Thursday 30 June 2005 - 12:00 am | Added by: Admin to Club News, First Team | Two comments |

The club have appointed a new Commercial Director in an attempt to attract further sponsorship etc.

Any enquiries for pitch or programme advertising, or any other kind of sponsorship should be directed to Richard Shepherd.

He can be contacted by telephoning 01442 385898 or 07743 499010.

For further information about the range of commercial opportunities available at Aylesbury United, click the link below.

Click here: Sponsorship Opportunities

500 Club Winning Numbers

Thursday 30 June 2005 - 12:00 am | Added by: Admin to First Team, Club News | No comments |

The winning numbers from last Friday's 500 Club draw are as follows:

1st prize £500: 52

2nd prize £100: 487

3rd prize £50: 463


Open Discussion Forum

Thursday 23 June 2005 - 12:00 am | Added by: Admin to First Team, Club News | No comments |

The club announce that they will host an Open Forum, for all fans to be brought up to speed on the club's future and to ask questions.

Monday 11th July, 8pm

This will be your chance to hear, first hand, the Club's plans and its present situation.

Bill Carroll and Graham Read will answer any relevant questions.
Also in attendance First Team and Youth Team Management.

If you miss your chance to speak or to question ? do not blame anyone else.

Junior Development

Wednesday 22 June 2005 - 12:00 am | Added by: Admin to Club News, First Team | One comment |


We are pleased to announce a restructured Junior Development programme which will enable boys and girls within Aylesbury Vale to progress (from the youngest age groups) to adult soccer with Aylesbury United FC and, for the very talented, to higher level football.


The Club has affiliated with Aylesbury United Girls FC under Head Coach, Anna Stevens. Currently girls from age 10 upwards are provided with coaching training and competitive matches with teams at under 12 and under 14 age levels. Girls can progress to an under 16 team and a Reserve team at the AUFC Ladies. Three officials from the Ladies section are undertaking the Level 1 FA Coaching Certificate this summer including Andy Foster. The Ladies First Team will be playing most of its home games next season at the Stadium.

This winter, links will be forged with junior schools to encourage more girls to take up playing soccer regularly, via 6th Form and College educational courses run by Wright Football, it is planned to produce young coaches able to assist Anna with the young girls? teams. In addition, courses are planned to offer ladies and senior girls from our teams the opportunity to qualify as referees.


The Club is to affiliate with the leading junior club, Aylesbury Town FC, with which it has agreed a comprehensive joint development programme. The junior club currently maintains 21 teams from under 8 to under 16 age groups with taster sessions for the very young on Saturday mornings. Next winter, Aylesbury Town will run one ? probably two - under 18 teams in the South Bucks Youth League under Head Coach Neil Bartholomew. These teams will be open to youths from Aylesbury Town and from other junior teams within the Vale. An experienced coach from Aylesbury United will assist Neil with training sessions.

A senior under 18 side playing in the mid-week Allied Counties League will be run by AUFC under Manager, Gary Crawshaw and coach Owen Clayton, and playing its home matches in the Allied Counties League under floodlights at the Stadium. Although open trials will be held each pre-season for this team it is hoped that the majority of the teams will be graduates from the Sunday side. Open trials for both teams and both clubs will be held at Bowlers Field, Quarrendon and Meadowcroft Community Centre starting on Saturday 9th July at 10.00 am. There will be every opportunity for players to move between the two clubs during the season.

A number of other coaches have been appointed to fulfil our aim of giving our Youth Development programme both high quality and intensive coaching. Further details will be given to the Youth Team directly. A common coaching programme together with agreed codes of conduct for players, parents and coaches has been agreed by both clubs. To assist with the development of individual skills, Peter Wright (a UEFA ?A? Licence coach) has agreed to hold mid-winter indoor ?clinics? for our Youth Team players. This will be a performance course aimed at improving both individual skills and game understanding. Occasional coaching sessions will also be held with top guest coaches, providing players and coaches with new angles on particular skills. An objective is also to provide coaches with individual and career progression.

Almost all of Aylesbury Towns teams are currently being managed by coaches with an FA Level 1 accreditation. A number of young players from Aylesbury Town together with new Managers are attending the July Level 1 course being run by Peter Wright. The plan is that every team (boys/girls/youths) that is part of this Junior Development programme will operate with a qualified coach next winter.

In like manner to the Girls? development programme links are being established with junior schools to provide new players for the boys? programme either directly from the schools or via our present after school clubs.

Parents and the older players will be encouraged to take courses to qualify as coaches and/or referees.

A committee has been established to oversee this programme with representatives from each Section, chaired by Bill Carroll and assisted by Franco Iannaccone, Peter Wright and Ken Turnbull (as Vice-Chairman). The mid-week team Secretary is Andrew Swain.


The above programme provides a clear and high quality pathway to enable young players to graduate and progress from the Saturday morning ?Tots Taster? sessions run by both AUFC and ATFC via teams at all levels up to the mid week under 18 side playing at a highly competitive standard (including the FA Youth Cup). The next stage is progression to Adult Football

For a number of valid reasons, this winter, AUFC will not run a reserve side although the First Team Manager plans to involve a number of our 19 and 20 year olds from the past two seasons in his First Team squad. There will also be an arrangement with another local senior club, New Bradwell St Peter, playing in South Midlands Division I, to enable these over age youths to get regular football throughout the winter. Together with their Level 2 Coach Micky Lemon, Manager Steve Goodridge, and with and our player input, the aim is to get New Bradwell St Peter promoted next year to the South Midlands Premier Division. Fortunately, Mickey Lemon and Danny Nicholls know each other and live close so that liaison should not be a problem.

During the winter season, AUFC plans to appoint a Director of Football Development to liaise with the Youth and the ?reserves?. Then the 2006/7 season will see the Club running a Reserve side, again, with the core of that side and its coaches coming from the Youth Development programme.
The unequivocal aim is that the Youth and Reserve sides will provide an increasing number of players, each season, to the AUC First Team squad and even next season Youth Team players will be given opportunities at a higher level.


The Girls? Club is well on the way to achieving FA Charter Standard status.

AUFC and Aylesbury Town will now be applying together so that each part of our playing programme will have a Charter Standard status.

Bill Carroll and Neil Bartholomew will be working together over the forthcoming months to put everything in place, to complete the forms and to fill gaps, with a view to AUFC and Aylesbury Town FC achieving the prestigious Community Club and Development Club awards.

As usual, however, to complete this task we do need participation from a few more people!


The over-riding restraint to our expansion plans for Junior and Youth Development is lack of facilities ? especially for winter coaching and training. Given the population of Aylesbury Vale there is a chronic shortage of outdoor flood-lit and good indoor facilities.

At the time of writing this, even the AUFC First Team is struggling to find somewhere to train in the winter months. Many of the junior teams find facilities through the kind assistance of schools but too often the playing fields do not provide a surface fit for first class training or coaching.

The future of the Junior Development plans and of AUFC itself can only be secured if we are able to provide our own training facilities. We are in negotiations to obtain a new long term lease which will then enable the Club to convert the Buckingham Suite into a dual purpose multisports hall / function room. The plan for the pitch, following EUFA approval, is to convert from grass to the very latest all-weather surface ? Mark III, 3rd Generation (rubber-crumb based) ? next summer.

This will be a Community facility, open to all to hire, whilst allowing the First Team to continue playing matches. It will also provide a new base/centre for our Junior Development programmes, from after school clubs throughout the year to coaching courses for players and coaches and will be available for many local junior clubs to train on (especially on Saturday mornings).

The pitch should be able to accommodate small sided games during the week and we plan to promote both indoor and outdoor small sided competitive leagues (complete with referees) to promote this rapidly growing soccer format and to increase soccer/sports participation in the Vale.

Detailed financial projections are still being worked and obviously any grant funding and outside finance will require the Centre to be run as a Community Centre and able to pay off its financing. However, there is no doubt that the income streams and the reduction in its share of direct base overhead costs will provide the club with an absolute and secure future.

Graham and John although not quite so physically involved now are in full support of this business plan. We are well on the way to raising the finance involved and aim at changing the hall this winter and the pitch next summer. A planning submission will be lodged by the end of July. What is needed then is an all round positive response from the AVDC, from the community and the fans.

The Club's Development Plans

Tuesday 21 June 2005 - 12:00 am | Added by: Admin to Club News, First Team | One comment |


The Club faces the same three basic problems almost every season:-

i) lack of training facilities for First Team, Reserves and Youth
ii) the high costs involved in bringing in players to the First Team who are not local (compensation for increased travel costs, loss of work time etc)
iii) losses year in year out ? funded by whom?

In addition, the Club buildings now need substantial investment to modernise and to comply with new regulations.

This latter problem is now acute. The dressing rooms and showers for both home and away teams need upgrading, although Danny Nicholls has kindly produced some new flooring for the home dressing room. The main building needs to replace two office Portacabins, to update its water systems, to install a sophisticated barrier at the car park entry, to install a disabled toilet, to replace all curtains in the function room and (most expensive of all) to install air-conditioning in the Function Room which would involve replacing the nightmarish electrical systems, the ceiling and installing new lighting. The function room also needs new carpets and to this can be added the ?16,000 or so needed to upgrade our floodlights.

Decision Time

The additional requirements now facing the club of funding the necessary alterations to the buildings, combined with the debts accumulated by trading losses through each of the past three/four years since we came out of Administration, force us into ?decision time?. Obviously, we cannot continue to drift along with a few people working like mad to raise sponsorship and other funds each year in the hope that the trading loss will be ?manageable?. That will get us nowhere now other than steadily downhill.

In spite of my vow ?not to continue to fund losses and that the Club must learn to stand on its own two feet? (made when others were running the Club and creating losses for me to fund) I, together with Graham Read, advanced ?16,000 last season to stop the Club losing its lease, although I have not been a Director and have had zero involvement in the Club?s footballing affairs.

I have also produced lesser sums over the season and agreed to be the sole guarantor to a brewery loan. That loan has not been fully used because the operations of the function room are constantly under attack from neighbours. This has meant a reduction in ?late night licences? and hence an inability to produce a business plan which would make this good facility with its modern kitchen a really profitable operation.

We are being squeezed from all directions ? declining bar and function room income, disappointing gate income, urgent repairs and reformations needed of (say) ?70,000, debts to service, a Reserve and Youth Team structure which had effectively collapsed.

What to do? There is one obvious answer and in spite of the huge sums which I have put into the Club and the efforts which I have made then I will consider writing all that off ? if the majority of fans do not want me to spearhead our new business plan! I should mention, of course, that during the period where serious family matters took over my life I have twice advertised the Club for sale to nil response.


The answers are inter-linked but need to be adhered to by all those involved with the Club:-

i) to reduce playing costs whilst producing a good team we must produce more and more of our own First Team players -locally.

ii) To achieve this we need to aim at having the best Junior/Youth Development programme in non-league football

iii) To achieve that we need top class coaches and managers (which we are well on the way to so doing) with top class training facilities

I am delighted that after starting from near scratch a few weeks ago, we now have a tots to u/18 programme in place with good coaches. That we have an inspirational figure as our new mid-week Youth Team Manager ? Gary Crawshaw aided by a big personality and a highly qualified coach who believes in development of players not just results ? Owen Clayton.

iv) How to achieve top class training facilities? The EUFA decision, at long last, to sanction certain types of all weather pitches has enabled me to go for a plan of converting the stadium into a fully fledged Soccer Centre, providing a playing and training base for our teams and a community facility open to all, together with day time educational courses and other activities. The FA are liasing with EUFA and FIFA to produce a grading system and with specifications to be in place for season 2006/7. To supplement the change of pitch the function room will be converted into a sports hall available for a number of sports including football whilst still being able to host functions.

500 Club Winning Numbers

Saturday 18 June 2005 - 12:00 am | Added by: Admin to First Team, Club News | No comments |

The winning numbers from the last two 500 Club draws are as follows:

Friday 10th June
1st prize ?100 - 469
2nd prize ?50 - 279

Friday 17th June
1st prize ?100 - 468
2nd prize ?50 - 76

Board of Directors

Thursday 16 June 2005 - 12:00 am | Added by: Admin to Club News, First Team | One comment |

I have been asked to comment on the resignations announced earlier this week. I am not going to undertake any interviews at this stage but will simply record some facts.

i) Graham Read remains as a Director and fully supports our business plan for seasons 2006/7 onwards.
ii) John Newman?s resignation is a coincidence of timing as clearly explained in his ?open? letter. His life has suddenly changed and he will be unable to devote the time which he feels appropriate to the task of Commercial Director. However, he will be and continues to be available to help the Club and this is warmly welcomed. John has arranged for Richard Shepherd to take on the role of Commercial Manager and Chris Dan to undertake day to day administration at the Club. Again, their help is appreciated.

Graham and John will, I believe, freely acknowledge that I warned them that the tasks which they took on were more difficult and more time-consuming than they could imagine. It is a fact that their own businesses have suffered from the amount of time and effort they have expended at the Club. Clearly they are disappointed that their efforts have not gained more support, either from numbers through the gate or from people wishing to give up some time to help, for example with Youth Team, Reserve Team matches and other unglamorous tasks such as match stewards and ball boys. Further, that the financial situation of the club has proven to be so difficult for them to turn round.

Although we have a business plan, which we believe will provide a secure future for the club, with the reduction in on-the-spot / hands-on management availability there are real difficulties to overcome in the short-term.

For the first time in many years I have more available time to spend on Club affairs but until this week I was only going to be involved in long-term planning and in chairing a committee working on our Junior Development programmes. Currently, I am still not a Director.

WJ Carroll

Stevenage Game Back On

Thursday 16 June 2005 - 12:00 am | Added by: Admin to Club News, First Team | One comment |

The friendly with Stevenage Borough, originally cancelled entirely, has now been re-arranged for Tuesday 2nd August.

This has been made possible due to the co-operation of Oxford City, who have kindly agreed to reschedule our match to the 26th July.

The updated pre-season schedule in full can be found on the Fixtures page by clicking the link below.

Click here: Fixtures Page

Youth Team News (Open Letter to All Players)

Thursday 16 June 2005 - 12:00 am | Added by: Admin to Club News, First Team | Four comments |

To all Youth Team players,

I am sorry for the delay in advising you of our plans for next season. As you will be aware the resignation part way through last season of Jerry Dimond and the comings and goings of other coaches left Franco Iannaccone valiantly struggling to hold two teams together.

This is not a situation which I wish to see repeated and to ensure that our Youth Development Programme is on the right footing has entailed a complete overhaul and restructuring.

Firstly, I am pleased that we now have a Committee overseeing the Youth Programme and that Franco and
Ken Turnbull are still involved. Franco is unable to devote the same amount of time to this as he did last season but will be involved as much as he can.

Former Director of Football, Peter Wright (a UEFA ?A? Licence coach) has agreed to hold mid-winter indoor ?clinics? for our Youth Team players. This will be a performance course aimed at improving both individual skills and game understanding. Occasional coaching sessions will also be held with top guest coaches, providing players and coaches with new angles on particular skills.

I can now advise that GARY CRAWSHAW, ex-Aylesbury United player and renowned striker, is the new mid-week Team Manager. Assisting him will be OWEN CLAYTON, a Level 3 Coach, recently with Hemel Hempstead Youth Team.

Pre season trials will take place at Bowlers Field, Quarrendon and Meadowcroft Community Centre, the first date being 9th July at 10.00 am and training dates will be advised very shortly, but most probably starting on
30th July.

You will receive a further lengthy memorandum very shortly which will explain in detail the new structure of Junior, Youth and Girls Development and of the pathway to Reserves and First Team Football.

The purpose of this note is to assure you that the Youth Teams are now a crucial part of our future plans for the Club which will involve increased coaching collectively, and individually, and our own outdoor and indoor training facilities for the 2006/7 season.

More generally, the Club wants to involve more people, especially parents, in the running of the Youth Section and in developing new coaches. This is rewarding work and those with an interest in helping the Club and its future, or in developing their own qualifications are welcome to apply.

WJ Carroll

Comment From 21CD

Wednesday 15 June 2005 - 12:00 am | Added by: Admin to Club News, First Team | Three comments |

There have been various rumours regarding developments at the Club but at present we do not have sufficient information to comment on these. What is absolutely clear is the Club faces a close season crisis and supporters may well feel that like other crises this one will go away. However Bill Carroll is no longer prepared to bail AUFC out. A bill for outstanding PAYE payments from a couple of seasons ago must be paid and unless additional funds can be raised it will impact on the playing budget.

Graham Read and John Newman have turned the football side of the Club around in the last eighteen months. Next season promises to be an interesting one. We have a young manager who is fired up for success and he is prepared to work with a very small playing budget for this standard of football. If the tax debt is taken from this budget he will not be able to provide an entertaining side which will start to bring the crowds back.

Aylesbury United Supporters Trust was set up to assist with ensuring that the Town has a football team playing at a senior level. We have invested our time and money in the Club and will work with whoever is in charge to achieve this goal.

We are alarmed at the present financial position and we will shortly be calling a meeting of all supporters of the Club both past and present to try to establish greater support. A chain of setbacks over the past few seasons has led to falling crowds and we need to reverse this trend immediately. We would urge residents of the Town to join the 500 Club, telephone 01296 436350 or visit the Club web site - for an application form.

The loss of Graham Read as Managing Director, although he will remain as a Director, and the loss of John Newman are body blows. We aware of rumours of sponsors and fans who will not come forward whilst Bill Carroll is around. We all need to put our differences behind us to ensure that the Club gets over this difficult twelve month period. The hard work put in by Graham and John must not be wasted. The Club is involved with Football in the Community and should be preserved. This is probably our last chance to protect football at this level and we are sure that no-one would want to a repeat of the end of the 2003/4 season where we were unable to compete against other sides in the league. Worse still see us go out of business and have to start from the bottom and claw our way back to this level.

21st Century Ducks

Stevenage Friendly Cancelled

Wednesday 15 June 2005 - 12:00 am | Added by: Admin to Club News, First Team | One comment |

The pre-season friendly with Stevenage Borough, scheduled for 30th July, has been cancelled.

Stevenage have been given the opportunity to take on Luton Town on that day, something they could not turn down.

The club are looking at the possibility of re-arranging the fixture for an alternative date, news will follow as soon as possible.

Read and Newman Stand Down

Tuesday 14 June 2005 - 12:00 am | Added by: Admin to Club News, First Team | One comment |

Statement From The Club

The Club regret to announce that on the 13.05.05 Graham Read resigned his position as Managing director of the football club.

Graham is to remain as a director of the club to fulfill contractual obligations he has entered into on behalf of the club.

The Club also regrets to announce that on the 14.05.05 John Newman resigned as a director of the club.

Statement From John Newman

It is with regret that I have today resigned as a director of the football club,

I will be spending a considerable amount of my time out of the country on business, and therefore feel unable to give the club the appropriate time and commitment it needs and deserves.

This is not a decision I have made lightly, but thought long and hard about, I am not the sort of person who can do anything half heartedly, it?s all or nothing I?m afraid, but if I am away so much, it will be impossible to devote the time to make it work.

It is with great sadness that I write this letter, in the main I have enjoyed my time at the Club, making many new friends and acquaintances. I would like to thank everyone who has helped and supported me in my brief time there.

I now realise how hard, the small band of employees and volunteers have to work, just to keep the show on the road, and I wish them and the Club all the best for the future.

Bill is now back on the board as chairman, with some exciting plans to secure a long term future for the club, I hope everyone gets behind the club to enable it to move forward to a much better and brighter future.

John Newman

Ducks Net Striker Hay as Roberts Also Signs

Wednesday 08 June 2005 - 12:00 am | Added by: Admin to Club News, First Team | Two comments |

Aylesbury United are delighted to announce the signing of centre-forward Darran Hay.

Hay was with Kings Lynn last season, having joined the Linnets from Hitchin Town before that. He has Football League experience with Cambridge United, and also featured for Woking and Stevenage Borough.

Drew Roberts has also registered for next season, with he and his new strike partner looking forward to firing the Ducks up the Southern League table.

Related links: Darran Hay Profile

Signings Drew Roberts and Darran Hay with manager Danny Nicholls. Click image to enlarge.

Register of Winning 500 Club Numbers

Wednesday 08 June 2005 - 12:00 am | Added by: Admin to First Team, Club News | One comment |

By popular request we have made available a register of all the winning numbers of every draw in the 500 Club so far.

The register shows the draw numbers and dates, and the prize money won by which particular ticket for all the 20 draws that have taken place.

The register can be found by visiting the 500 Club page below.

Click here: 500 Club

Further Friendly Added To List

Tuesday 07 June 2005 - 12:00 am | Added by: Admin to Club News, First Team | One comment |

The club have announced an additional pre-season friendly to to initial list released five days ago.

On Saturday 30th July the club will entertain ex-Aylesbury striker Graham Westley's Stevenage Borough side.

Stevenage reached the Conference play-offs this season having finished 5th in the league, and will become Aylesbury's fourth opponents in the friendly calendar.

The game has been added to the fixture list, click the link below.

Click here: 2005/06 Fixture List

Club Structure

Monday 06 June 2005 - 12:00 am | Added by: Admin to First Team, Club News | One comment |

There has been a lot of speculation recently with regard to the club structure and complaints regarding lack of information.

The Club will be making an official statement in due course when everyone is back from holidays and had an opportunity to meet and finalise details.

However, following the previous premature release that I gave regarding Dean Cracknell signing for us and the problems this caused for Dean at that time, I do not wish to confuse the situation by releasing small snippets of information but would rather present ideas and plans for the future as a whole. In the meantime we apologise to supporters for the above mentioned lack of information from the Club.

John Newman

500 Club Winning Numbers

Friday 03 June 2005 - 12:00 am | Added by: Admin to First Team, Club News | No comments |

This week's winning numbers in the 500 Club draw are as follows:

1st prize ?100: 263
2nd prize ?50: 210

Pre-Season Friendlies Confirmed

Thursday 02 June 2005 - 12:00 am | Added by: Admin to Club News, First Team | One comment |

Following much recent speculation, Aylesbury United can today confirm their intial list of pre-season friendly matches

The Ducks' will take on League One Swindon Town in their curtain-raiser to the season, whilst Danny Nicholls' former employers Northampton Town also visit.

Matches will then be played against both Oxford sides - League Two United home and relegated City away.

To finish up is a 'first' match with Aylesbury Vale FC, who were of course Haywood United this time last year, at their ground at Haywood Way.

The pre-season schedule is as follows:

Sat 16th July 3pm - Swindon Town - Home
Tue 19th July 7.45pm - Northampton Town - Home
Sat 23rd July 3pm - Oxford United - Home
Tue 2nd August 7.45pm - Oxford City - Away
Sat 6th August 3pm - Aylesbury Vale - Away

It is possible that another couple of friendlies will still be added to this list, with the dates of 26th/30th July vacant. Secretary Peter Ash is busy as ever in consultations with various clubs in the local area.

The new League season kicks off on Saturday 13th August, and Southern League fixtures are anticipated for release on Thursday 14th July.

The pre-season friendlies have been added to the fixture list, click the link below.

Click here: 2005/06 Fixture List