Ashton & Backwell United appoint Tony Beecham as new manager

Ashton & Backwell United new coaching staff manager Beecham, Williams, Thomas and Perrett.

Ashton & Backwell United new coaching staff, from left to right, manager Tony Beecham, Jim Williams, Chairman Mike Thomas and Ryan Perrett. - Credit: Ashton & Backwell United FC

Ashton & Backwell United have announced Tony Beecham as their new manager to replace Charlie Rich.

Beecham joined The Stags after his departure as assistant manager from Hellenic League Premier Division side Hallen AFC in September.

In a twist of fate former manager Stuart Jones, who was replaced by Rich, and assistant Andy Hawkins were both appointed by The Armadillos the same month.

Rich left the club in July, signalling a number of difficulties in his reasons to leave the role, including losing nine players from last season’s squad and the distance of travelling to games this season.

He also cited the impact Covid had on The Stags pre-season, where only two games were played out of a programme of seven friendlies.

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Assistant Ricky Earrey also left.

But A & B have now also appointed Williams as their assistant manager and Ryan Perrett as their new first team coach.

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Williams rejoined St George Easton in Gordano last summer after five years with Cribbs as their assistant manager, under Beecham, to replace David James, who had stepped down to focus on the third team.

Williams led the side back to the Somerset League after five years in his first season in charge, where they secured promotion from the Weston & District League after finishing second in Division One.

Perrett arrives after leaving his role as manager of Parson Street Old Boys in the Premier Division of Bristol & Suburban League.

Chairman Mike Thomas said he was "very excited" with the hiring of the trio and confirmed caretaker managers Nic Smart and Matt Southern have gone back to their respective roles within the club as reserves manager and with the first team.

He added: "Tony was at the top of the list I drew up once we perceived Stuart's resignation. I approached Tony at the end of April/early May, unfortunately he wasn't available, he had given his word to another club and he went to Hallen.

"'I've kept my eyes and ears on the situation there. Once Charlie Rich left us, he was my number one target and we are very delighted to get him, Jim Williams and Ryan Perrett on board."

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