BURNHAM United AFC chairman Matt Counsell has announced that he will be standing down at the end of the current season.

In a letter addressed to the committee, managers and players of the club, Counsell said: "I have enjoyed the nine years at the club, six as chairman, and am incredibly proud of what has been achieved by the committee in that time.

"However, over recent months several factors have come together which has led to me making the decision to stand down for the good of both myself and the club.

"In the last 18 months my career has been steadily growing, that has meant I have not been able to give as much time to the club as I once did, which means the club will not be able to continue to progress under my leadership.

"On reflection I knew deep down before Christmas that this would have to be my last season at the helm as I ultimately need to give more attention to my life away from Burnham United AFC, knowing what I am able to give moving forward isn’t what the club deserves."

Counsell has also been approached by officers at the Uhlsport Somerset County League about the vacant role of league vice-chairman, and he has chosen to put himself forward for the role.

He added: "The role will hopefully allow me to remain involved in football in a way that fits within my work/life balance far better than staying on at Burnham United AFC in a smaller capacity, as I know that if I do this I’ll get dragged in to doing more and more, leaving me in a similar position which I find myself in now."

"I hope you all understand my position and ultimately my decision as I need to put myself first after putting Burnham United AFC first for much of the last six years."

Counsell will continue in the role until the club AGM, scheduled for the week of May 20.

He concluded: "There is lots to be positive about the club, with the growth of ladies football, one of very few clubs in Somerset fielding four Saturday men’s sides, and lots of young talented footballers under the age of 25.

"This can be built on with the club adapting to the new challenges of modern team sport; the future is bright if people work together on the same agenda.

"I would like to thank you all for your support and look forward to seeing how the club grows as it moves into its next chapter."


TOMORROW'S football sees Burnham United travel to take on County League Division 1 leaders Mendip Broadwalk (ko 3pm).

Burnham's fine recent form (five unbeaten, three of those wins) has lifted them up to 12th, and clear of relegation danger, but they will be sorely tested by tomorrow's hosts.

Elsewhere, Burnham United Reserves host Division 3 rivals Combe St Nicholas, while in the Weston-super-Mare & District League Burnham United A are away to Uphill Castle A, and Burnham B entertain Wrington Redhill A.

Also in the Weston League, Wedmore go to Portishead Town A, while Huntspill Crowns visit Axbridge Town.