Yeovil Town officially went into hibernation on Tuesday night within hours of the coronavirus crisis leading to the National League season being suspended indefinitely.
The Glovers announced the immediate suspension of all operations and the furloughing of all players and staff to stave off widespread redundancies.
Under the government’s coronavirus job retention scheme, all staff will be entitled to 80 per cent of their wages.
Staff at Huish Park had already been asked to take a 50 per cent pay cut last week following the suspension of the National League campaign until 3 April nearly two weeks ago.
STATEMENT | Club operations now in hibernation.
More information ? #YTFC ?
— Y e o v i l T o w n (Stay ?) (@YTFC) March 31, 2020
A statement on the club’s website said: “As widely reported all our football and non-match day conference activity effectively ceased in early March due to the present exceptional circumstances.
“Since that time our staff have been unable to work and we have therefore decided that rather than be forced to make widespread redundancies, we will furlough all club staff and players to enable us to retain them via the support of the government’s coronavirus job retention scheme.
“As a result of this decision, which is in the best interests of the club (including its players and staff), all club activities are now in hibernation although social media and website updates will continue via our volunteer network. Purchases from the online shop can still be made but obviously will not be processed/dispatched until the furlough period ends.
“As soon as matters change, we will issue further updates, but for now we thank all our fans for their ongoing support. We hope that everyone reading this statement stays well and complies with government advice so that we can all return to normal as soon as possible.”
The National League’s decision to suspend indefinitely comes after all Non-League football at Steps 3 to 7 was terminated with immediate effect by the Football Association last Thursday, a decision which sparked huge controversy after the season was also declared null and void with no promotion or relegation.
National League Statement | Competition Suspended Indefinitely
— The National League (@TheVanaramaNL) March 31, 2020
Non-League’s top tier must still decide if it will follow suit and expunge all the results in the National League, National North and National South. Any decision is complicated by the National League’s links to the professional game through promotion and relegation from the English Football League.
Make sure you get your copy of The Non-League Paper this week for all the latest news in one place on the impact of the coronavirus crisis on society and football’s fightback.
In shops on Sundays and Mondays, it’s always available as a pound-busting digital edition and full replica of the printed paper. Save cash on single issues, even more on longer deals and the pages still rustle too!
Images courtesy of @YTFC/Twitter