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Darlington Football Club

Ray Simpson / 17th April 2017

Statement from the Darlington FC board of directors

Statement from the Darlington FC board of directors

Statement from the Darlington FC board of directorsThe board of Darlington FC regrets to announce th...

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Statement from the Darlington FC board of directors

The board of Darlington FC regrets to announce that Richard Cook has decided to resign from the Board after the fans’ forum this coming Friday 21st April 2017. This is despite many messages of support for the Board in relation to recent events regarding the play-offs, and the unequivocal support of the Supporters Group as majority shareholder.

Richard, who holds a senior role in a major international organisation, feels that he is unable to balance both his working and family commitments with the cultural fit of being a director of the football club. The events at Fylde and the vitriol in the last few days, particularly on social media targeted at individuals who only offered professional services on an unpaid volunteer basis, was disgraceful and completely unjustifiable, and so Richard's decision comes as no surprise.

Director John Tempest said; "I would like to thank Richard for everything that he has done for the club, most notably in getting us back playing in Darlington. This was a tremendous achievement, and one which I suspect might not have been achieved but for Richard's leadership. He remains a loyal and passionate supporter and has offered to provide assistance to the club around future infrastructure investment  and sponsorship opportunities.”

Wayne Raper, Chairman of the Supporters Group said: "The DFCSG would like to place on record the tireless work in adversity which Richard carried out to return the Football Club home. Richard was seen by the DFCSG as a vital member of the Club board with a broad skill set which was a huge asset in achieving the objectives of both the DFCSG and DFC and will be extremely difficult to replace. We hope that Richard will continue to attend games in future and will be afforded the warm welcome he deserves.

"As a fan-owned and funded club not only do we need to respect the players and coaching staff but also the Board and all volunteers. Without that respect, it is difficult to see how we can move forward."

It has also been agreed that Jonathan Jowett will be stepping down as a director of the club and his role will change to that of Company Secretary. Jonathan will continue to ensure that appropriate standards of governance are applied as we develop relations with our shareholders and fans. Jonathan will also oversee our response to FA match incident investigations and more pressingly our appeal to the FA of the decision by the National League to prevent us participating in the play-offs.

In that respect, we will be filing our Notice of Appeal by 5pm on Thursday 20th April, and intend to post it into our website at the same time so that fans can see the arguments we are putting forward to the FA.

We will now be working with DFCSG to review the constitution of the Board of Directors, as we launch details of future plans at the forthcoming Fans Forum.