BetVictor Isthmian League East Thurrock United are calling on their fans to rally round and safeguard their long-term future.
Supporters are being asked to attend a meeting his week to consider a whole range of issues, starting with the appointment of a new chairman.
The Rocks have called the meeting after suffering two major blows this season, the passing of the club’s popular former owner and saviour Ben Bennett in December and John Coventry’s announcement last week that he was bringing his thirteen year reign as manager to a close at the end of the season.
According to a club statement, former Rocks player and manager Colin McBride will chair the meeting at Rookery Hill on Wednesday night to discuss the club’s options. A close friend of the Bennett family, he will work to ensure the isthmian League Premier Division club has a “sound future”.
The Rocks statement read: “Without doubt the past couple of years or so has been an extremely trying time for the football club.
“The illness, and subsequent sad passing of our much loved Ben Bennett, has taken its toll on us all, and has led to conjecture about the continued existence of East Thurrock United Football Club.
“Now, following last weeks announcement, we also know that John Coventry will be stepping down as manager after twenty years service to the Rocks.
“John departs with our sincere thanks, and our very best wishes, and states that he is committed to working with us over the coming weeks to ensure the smooth hand-over to the new management. As John says “It’s what Ben would have wanted”.
“We wish to stress here and now that we are totally committed to honouring the memory of Ben, and the dedication shown by John Coventry, by ensuring that the club continues and thrives as a lasting tribute to these two gentlemen, along with the many other stalwarts who have contributed to the club over the past fifty odd years.
“We can now announce that Colin McBride has taken on the mantle of working with the Bennett family to ensure that East Thurrock United FC has a sound future.
“Colin is a long-time close friend of Ben Bennett and his family, and a former Rocks player himself, who has many close friends at the club.
“A past manager of Thurrock and Hornchurch Football Clubs, Colin stepped in a few years back to save Hornchurch from going under, and remains very much involved there.
“Basically, Colin knows what running a Non-League club is all about, and we are pleased to have him helping us at this time.
“However, as well as John Coventry, there are likely to be several other people also stepping down from their roles at the club at the end of the season, meaning we will need people to come on board to work with us and play a part in our off field team.
“We need to find a chairman, football secretary, treasurer, plus additional people to ensure the smooth running of the club, particularly on home matchdays.
“In addition to those admin roles, if we are to consider maintaining our current Isthmian Premier status, then we really need to attract additional financial support and sponsorship. We are prepared to consider any proposals or ideas you may have.
“Please don’t hold back, NOW is the time to pull together and get involved, so please, either come forward at the meeting, or message us on our club Twitter or Facebook.