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Bishop’s Stortford get new manager search under way after Steve Smith announces decision to step down at end of season





Bishop’s Stortford have begun the process of finding a new manager after Steve Smith announced he is to step down at the end of the season.

The club’s majority shareholder will continue to work behind the scenes and remain on the board of directors, but said the decision to end his time in the dugout was “in the best interests of myself, my family and the football club”.

Smith, who will have been in charge for 252 games, led the Blues to the Pitching In Isthmian League, Premier Division title last term and a return to step two of the non-league pyramid.

But being placed in Vanarama National League North, rather than the South, has led to an extremely tough campaign that has resulted in relegation.

“After many weeks of thought and following discussions with my family, I can confirm that I have decided to step down as first team manager at the end of this season,” said Smith.

“It is a decision I arrive at with some sadness, but I feel that it is in the best interests of myself, my family and the football club.

Majority shareholder Steve Smith is to step down as Bishop’s Stortford manager at the end of the season. Picture: Gerred Gilronan
Majority shareholder Steve Smith is to step down as Bishop’s Stortford manager at the end of the season. Picture: Gerred Gilronan

“It has been an incredible honour to manage this wonderful club, but I feel the time is right for a new direction on the playing side which means a fresh face with fresh ideas in the changing room.

“I will, of course, still be a part of the football club behind the scenes and will assist the new manager in any way I can whilst recognising they deserve the freedom to implement their own plans.

“The board have already short-listed several candidates and the interview process to select my successor is already under way. We look forward to bringing you that announcement soon.”

The Blues, who are scheduled to visit Rushall Olympic tonight (Tuesday April 9), travel to Buxton on Saturday (April 13).

Smith will then take charge of his final match when they entertain Curzon Ashton on Saturday April 20.

“It has been a tremendous few years and I cannot step away without offering my heartfelt thanks to the officials and volunteers behind the scenes who do so much work, often unseen, to make our club such an outstanding place to be a part of,” said Smith.

“Thank you also to all the lads who have played for me during the past few years, many of whom have been with me for several seasons now. It has been my pleasure to be your gaffer.

“And last, but not least, thank you to our fantastic supporters. You have always turned out in your numbers and travelled the length and breadth of the country to support us. Together we have created some incredible memories.

“To be able to celebrate the club’s first title in 30 years with you last year was a special moment that I will forever treasure.”



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