HARROGATE TOWN have announced they will take a “massive leap” and become a full-time club next season.
The ambitious National League North outfit finished fourth last term before missing out on promotion in the play-offs and currently sit tenth after a promising start to the campaign.
With league rivals AFC Fylde impressing since moving to full-time in the summer, Harrogate will now go the same way after lengthy discussions.
The Sulphurites installed a new 3G pitch at their CNG Stadium in the summer and boss Simon Weaver expects the move to a profesional model to further push the club on.
The income associated with a 3G surface have helped Town and Weaver says the club have everything they need to make full-time a reality and improve their promotion prospects.
He said: “We have spoken about if for a while, but now we have the infrastructure in place to make this step up. We already have a professional mindset here, and I want every player to also have that mentality of being a full-time footballer.
“As a club we have been preparing for this transition for a while, and as such it is important for us to be honest and open with everyone involved as early as we possibly can.
“Making our intentions known now gives our players, staff and supporters the best possible opportunity to adapt and prepare for the exciting change that is ahead of us.
“All the players have reacted positively to the news, and we are confident that each and every member of the squad will remain 100 per cent committed to the cause for the duration of this season.
“We’re a close-knit, ambitious group right across the club and this further signals our intent to do things the right way.
“Ultimately, there are a number of clubs at this level that are already full-time, professional clubs, and you can clearly see the benefit of working with players on a daily basis. For me, you can’t underestimate how much of a massive leap in the right direction this is for our football club.”