Season 2006/07 News Archive

Tunbridge Wells today secured the services of experienced Striker Paul McCarthy for the upcoming season, according to assistant manager Steve Gibbons. McCarthy agreed to come to Culverden after talks with manager Martin Farnie, who he rejoins at The Wells after playing under Farnie at Dartford. "Macca is an experienced campaigner in the Kent League and has enjoyed successful spells at Dartford, Cray Wanderers, VCD and Slade Green," said Martin tonight. "He offers us something different up front as he is mobile and has a good footballing brain, I am sure he will fit in nicely as he is also a hard-worker."

Goalkeeper John Whitehouse has opted to ply his trade at a higher level with Isthmian League Chatham Town, while Midfielder Abdul El Ferdi has also left and Forward Dave Hassett links up with Greenwich Borough.

It was confirmed at the AGM that former England, Tottenham and Brighton star Gary Stevens has been appointed Director of Football at Tunbridge Wells.

A 4-2 win over Ryman Premier side Tonbridge Angels at Culverden this afternoon saw an under-strength Tunbridge Wells lift the Courier Cup for the first time outright. Second half goals from Adrian Hatcher, Tom Fuller, Alex Rich and Chris Stoate secured the victory.

Trevor Gray has been named as the new Reserve Team manager at Culverden, taking over from Mike D'Arcy who has opted to step down. D’Arcy will work alongside Gray for the short term. Gray brings in ex-Wells man Carl Wells and Noel Bradbury in coaching capacities to assist him.

Alan Burns has moved from reserve team coach at Tunbridge Wells and become the club’s head coach. Burns holds a UEFA B coaching badge. Former first team manager Mike McKeown returns to Culverden in a new position as chief scout.

Tunbridge Wells were left clearing up the mess following a break in at Culverden Stadium last Saturday evening. In an idiotic attack, the clubhouse has been left damaged - with walls and new playing kits stained with food and drink along with the theft of other equipment. The vandals didn’t steal any of the trophies in the trophy cabinet, but left the Courier Cup covered in cleaning fluid. Thursday evening's U18s John Ullman Cup tie against Kennington, and Saturday’s FA Vase game against Farnham Town will still go ahead.

The Wells would like to hear from anyone who can donate pitch equipment, which was stolen, and anyone with information on the raid should contact Tunbridge Wells Police Station.

On Sunday the 22nd October there will be a veterans game at Culverden to celebrate the 100th Birthday of ex-Wells Physio George Piper. George is always there at match-days and was the Physio when the Wells last won the league in 1985. Any gate money and donations received on the day have been offered to George but he has declined and would rather the proceeds go to a local hospice so it would be good if people could show their support. The match will be between Tunbridge Wells Vets and Tonbridge Angels Vets - Martin Farnie will be putting together the vets side for The Wells and wants to have as many players from the league-winning side as possible.

10/10/2006 - CLUB STATEMENT
Tunbridge Wells FC has for many years been run by a committee of hard-working volunteers who, by their efforts, along with numerous other parties, have maintained a football club playing at Culverden Stadium. It has been decided that although results at First Team level are vitally important, the structure of the club needs to be amended in order that the club can strengthen and develop further, with the intention that the First Team can aspire to climbing the non-league pyramid. The initial step has been to reduce the committee to a board of six, with each individual having their own specific role. Each member of the “board” will develop their own “team” to assist and work alongside them.

The new board consists of:
Norman Sales - Chairman
Judy Farnie - Vice Chairperson
Barry Whitlock - Secretary
Brian Luxford - Treasurer
Gary Stevens - Director of Football
Phil Dowrick - Chief Executive

With change there is invariably a period of uncertainty, adjustment, and much behind-the-scenes activity. Tunbridge Wells FC is no exception to this. To keep all the club’s fans, followers and interested parties informed TWFC would like to clarify a number of matters:

1. The clubs First Team shirt sponsor from last season, McGinley, finally agreed in mid September 2006 to remain with the club for the 2006/07 season with an option on the 2007/08 season. Their valuable financial contribution will be paid by instalments across the current season with an agreed percentage set aside for club and facility development with the remainder made available to assist with player expenses. This has inevitably reduced the Managers budget for the First Team and as a consequence a number of players have left the club.
2. The impact of reducing the weekly budget has affected the First Team in the early weeks of the current season far more than TWFC and the Manager had hoped. This along with a number of senior players being unavailable for selection for various reasons has lead to some disappointing results. However, in the medium term the club will benefit from the current restructuring and the inevitable promotion of youth through the club.
3. TWFC’s association with Foresters FC, arguably Tunbridge Wells most progressive youth football club in recent years, will in time benefit both clubs as young local players start to filter into the newly formed Under 18 side playing in the Kent Youth League. This in turn will provide players for the Reserve side and ultimately the First Team. Also Foresters FC will be more able to retain their better players with the incentive of them progressing to play for Tunbridge Wells FC, their home town club.
4. We also have an Under 16 and Under 15 team playing as Tunbridge Wells FC this season, administered by Foresters FC, with the intention that an Under 14 and Under 13 team will also play as Tunbridge Wells FC in the 2007/08 season, again administered by Foresters FC.
5. We have also formed a Ladies team which is playing in the Sussex Ladies League, Division 2, and is currently administered by Foresters FC as they have girls playing in Under 10 and Under 14 teams which will in turn feed into the Ladies team.
6. The actions in points 3, 4 and 5 above significantly increase the number of TWFC club members and associated members which in turn increase the potential and benefits for Tunbridge Wells FC, Foresters FC and the players and followers of both clubs alike.
7. Several meetings have taken place between Tunbridge Wells Borough Council and representatives of TWFC with a view to improving the facilities at Culverden Stadium in various ways. Tunbridge Wells Borough Council would very much like the club to have a higher profile and generate more interest and involvement of the town’s population. The Borough Council are keen to assist wherever possible and a positive relationship exists.
8. TWFC is keen to initially develop a training area at Culverden Stadium which would be used by the clubs various sides as well as local schools and organisations and also other clubs as a facility they can hire.
9. A survey of the entire Culverden Stadium site has been commissioned and, as recommended by Tunbridge Wells Borough Council, an appropriate consultant has been appointed to determine possible facility improvements before presenting them to the Borough Council.
10. The proposed new changing rooms are now approved and funding is being sought in various forms including grants in order to assist completion. This will form part of the overall facility uplift.
11. TWFC is currently applying for FA Charter status which will again be an advantage in the medium long term.
12. The perimeter of the pitch is now 70% boarded and numerous new advertisers have signed up to have the banner strategically placed at Culverden Stadium
13. The pitch itself had several thousand pounds spent on it in the summer and we are hopeful that it will provide a better playing surface for a greater time period this season.
14. Discussions with a shirt sponsor for the Reserves, Ladies and Under 18 Youth sides has now, in principal, been agreed and further revenue steams are being discussed and developed.

Hopefully this provides an insight into the current situation and work carried out and ongoing. We are hopeful that in two to three years’ time we will look back at 2006 and realise what great progress has been made.

All support is most valuable and we very much hope our regular supporters continue to be so and a greater following is generated. Any additional assistance you can offer would be welcome and your constructive thoughts and ideas will always be considered.

James Graham has followed Jamie Lover by moving from Culverden to moor up at Erith Town (the Dockers).

06/11/2006 – ALAN BURNS LEAVES
In a huge blow for Tunbridge Wells FC Alan Burns has resigned his position as Head Coach. At this time we are unable to bring news of any replacement but are truly grateful for all that Alan has done for the club. With Mike D'Arcy he produced a fine crop of reserve players last season, a number of whom are now playing first team football. Player testimony bears tribute to his fine ability as a coach and motivator.

Martin Farnie has used his Dartford connections to sign centre forward Jimmy Carter. The move has come about to enable Carter to regain full match fitness after he missed half of last season through injury, and then suffered a further setback in the summer. Once fully fit again he is expected to re-join Dartford, whose manager Tony Burman told Darts supporters to "please be assured that Jim is very much in my plans."

14/12/2006 – PETER WAGER, R.I.P.
It is with sadness that Tunbridge Wells FC learned of the death of Peter Wager - aged 78 - on Tuesday, December 12th. Peter had been ill for some time prior to his passing away. Peter had enjoyed a very long association with both Tunbridge Wells FC (most recently as Honorary President) and the Kent League as President. He was well known and respected throughout the non-league game due to his connections on the various committees administered through the Football Association. He will be sadly missed by many people and, as a mark of respect, Tunbridge Wells will hold a minute silence before their home game with VCD Athletic on Saturday. Other Kent League clubs across the county will also hold a minute's silence prior to their next home games.

03/01/2007 – NEW GOALIE SIGNS
Martin Farnie has resolved The Wells' goalkeeping problems by signing Glen Winter-Nolan from Chatham. Glen has been a member of Chatham's first team squad this season along with former Culverden favourite John Whitehouse. It is thought that Jim Simpson will be out injured for a couple of months.

Andy Boyle has returned to Culverden Stadium and becomes the third player in as many weeks to make the journey from Chatham Town. Boyle is fondly remembered from his previous time with Tunbridge Wells when he played at the centre of defence and also had spells as a central midfielder with great success. Central midfielder Jim Lyons also joins The Wells on a month’s loan from Chatham Town.

Manager Martin Farnie has again been busy this week with players coming and going. Richard Radbourne has joined the club. A central midfielder, earlier this season he captained high-flying Greenwich Borough, and will add further strength to an increasingly experienced central spine to the team. Also signed is Brad Sandman who was with Maidstone last season and plays in defence. The 37 year-old brings much needed experience which will benefit the youngsters at Culverden. The signing of keeper Stuart Robbins, however, has come too late for him to appear in tomorrow's match at Erith Town, and Alan Rogers will play after the release of Glen Winter-Nolan back to Chatham.

Additional signings to come will include Dave Hassett and Abdul El-Ferdi who are to return to Culverden after a spell with Greenwich. Martin Farnie explained "I am looking to build for next year now. Richard Radbourne is a very good player and he is looking to be with us next year too. These signings are players who have not been beaten up this season and will freshen things up a bit."

23/01/2007 – CLUB STATEMENT
Tunbridge Wells FC wishes to advise that the EGM set for Monday 12/02/2007 has been postponed, pending clarification of those constitutionally entitled to vote at such a meeting. Following events, and the damaging press coverage last week, Norman Sales and Judy Farnie, as trustees of Tunbridge Wells FC, are happy to report that Gary Stevens is still on the committee as an elected member and remains Director of Football.

19/02/2007 – GEORGE PIPER, R.I.P.
It is with sadness that The Wells learned of George Piper's death. Aged 100, George was a long-standing servant of the club, and was its Physio well in to his 70s. A minute's silence was held at all Kent League matches over the weekend.

09/03/2007 - STEVENS WIN THE DAY
Gary Stevens carried last night's vote at the EGM by a whopping 62-8 and will now take overall control of Tunbridge Wells FC in the summer. There is a large amount of documentation and reporting to wade through between now and then and we shall endeavour to keep everyone up to date with progress.

"Firstly I was delighted with the attendance at the EGM of Tunbridge Wells FC on Thursday 8 March 2007 which allowed a vote to take place in line with the clubs constitution and rules. My proposal was voted for at a rate of 8 to 1 in favour and I’m delighted to now have the opportunity to deliver.

"My proposal covers many areas of the club including - but not solely - the pitch, changing rooms, club house, car park, entrance and of course the status and standing of the First, Reserves, Youth and Ladies teams.

"It will certainly take time and a lot of hard work and resources but when we look back at March 2007 in years to come we will all see the progress made.

"An initial frustration is that certain legal matters must now be completed before my initial investment into the club can commence but this should only be a few weeks. I have, however, already started to move certain matters forward and believe good early progress can be made on a number of fronts.

"The exiting Committee/Board have been tireless in their work for the club and have valuable roles to play going forward - as have the current members, players, coaches and management.

"Everyone associated with the club will be kept advised as we move onwards and upwards in a controlled and business-like manner both on and off the pitch."

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