Conor Washington has paid tribute to St Ives Town’s former managers Jez Hall and Warren Everdell after the duo stepped down last week.
The Peterborough United striker, who came up through the ranks at the club, before moving to Newport County in 2012, said: “What they have done for St Ives is an incredible achievement by two great people as well as great managers. They gave me a chance as a 16-year-old and I am still hugely grateful for that. I really enjoyed my time playing under them and they are a great loss for St Ives.”
After 12 years and with St Ives Town playing at their highest level ever, Hall has admitted his sadness after he and Everdell stepped down as joint managers of the Southern League Division One Central club.
The Hunts Post was contacted by a number of Huntingdonshire football people who all wanted to pay tribute to the pair who led the club from the depths of Division One of the United Counties League to this season’s successful first season in Step 5.
“I am very sad to be leaving after all this time, but we just felt the time was right to move on,” said Hall. “We have left with the team in a good position, they showed they were more than good enough to remain at that level, and with a couple additions could improve next season. We have so many great memories and have enjoyed these fantastic times.”
In their 12 years at the helm, Hall and Everdell used 186 players in 629 games and since 2007 have reached 15 cup finals winning eight of them.
It was the then chairman Nev Nania – now the joint manager at Godmanchester Rovers – who lined the duo up for the job in 2002 when the club was one place off the bottom of Division One of the UCL. Success after success followed with 2007’s monumental feat of winning the treble of the Hinchingbrooke Cup and Huntingdonshire FA Senior and Premier cups all in one week. There were also some great runs in the FA Vase with the club reaching the last eight of the national competition in 2012.
Promotion to the Southern League was achieved with a second-place finishing in the Premier Division of the UCL last year.
Also stepping down at the club for is coach Errol McCammon and secretary Simon Clark. Hall said: “Both of them have played a massive part in our success here.”
Nania, leading the tributes, said: “They have been the bedrock of the club,” while former Huntingdon Town manager Ricky Marheineke said: “What Jez and Warren have achieved over the past 12 years is amazing. I have watched the club grow both on and off the pitch.”
Everdell, who has been playing and managing for 34 years, said: “It was a difficult decision but I just felt I needed a break. I know I am going to miss it but I don’t know yet how much I am going to miss it.
“We have thoroughly enjoyed out 12 years together and it was good to go out on a high.”
The club has already started looking for a new manager and the director Gary Cole confirmed interviews for the post will begin soon.