NON-LEAGUE FOOTBALL: Promotion hero Ben Seymour-Shove is back at St Ives Town as the club’s first summer signing

Ben Seymour-Shove has returned to St Ives Town. Picture: DUNCAN LAMONT

Ben Seymour-Shove has returned to St Ives Town. Picture: DUNCAN LAMONT - Credit: Archant

The scorer of the most famous goal in St Ives Town history is back.

Saints chief Ricky Marheineke has made local lad Ben Seymour-Shove his first summer signing ahead of the new Southern League Premier Division Central season.

The popular wideman hit the unforgettable extra-time winner when Saints beat AFC Rushden & Diamonds in the Southern League Division One Central play-off final of 2015/16 to earn promotion to Step 3 for the first time.

Seymour-Shove, who also struck the club’s opening goal at that level on the first day of the following season, left Saints to join Cambridge City midway through last term.

But boss Marheineke is only too pleased to welcome Seymour Shove, who works for the club’s football and education programme, back into the Saints fold.

Marheineke said: “I’m delighted to have ‘Shev’ back at the club. I’m sure he’ll be rejuvenated and relishing the challenge of helping us to kick on again after a tough season.

“The move away probably came at a good time for Ben and for myself. We’d worked together for a long time at two different clubs and sometimes people need a change.

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“I respected his decision to move on, but the door always remained open and we’re all pleased that Ben has come back through it.

“He stepped down a level with Cambridge City, but there’s no doubt in my mind he should be playing at Step 3. He’s also a St Ives boy who cares massively about the club.

“It is not easy to find wide players who are capable of creating and scoring goals, but Ben does both and it’s a great start to our recruitment.

“We’re working hard behind the scenes to give the squad a new look for next season.”

Marheineke revealed he could bring in as many as eight new players this summer. Mildenhall right-back Joe Hood is another player to be linked with the club.

Saints, who begin pre-season training on Tuesday (July 3), finished third-bottom of the Southern League Premier Division last season – an outcome which would normally have led to relegation.

However, they were spared the drop by a reshuffle of the non-league system which meant only bottom side Dunstable went down.

And even though there was little to cheer on the pitch last season, Saints are celebrating a big prize.

The club received £5,000 at the Southern League annual awards bash last weekend for boasting the most improved social media and club website output of any team in the league last season.

Chairman Gary Clarke praised programme editor and webmaster Dave Hook, and photographer Louise Thompson after receiving the accolade.