New chairman Bignall is ready to roll

By David Watters

Mike Bignall is looking forward to leading Runcorn Linnets into the EVO-STIK League as the Cheshire club's new chairman.

A compliance monitor for a leading mobile communications company and a member of the Trust board at the fan-owned Linnets for the last 19 months ago, Bignall, pictured, was unveiled as the successor to Mark Buckley on Tuesday following his recent resignation for personal reasons.

Linnets officials also named Jon Urquhart as vice-chairman with immediate effect after the elections for both positions were unopposed. As deputy chair, Urquhart takes over from Paul Eastup after he cited his business commitments for standing down. Eastup will stay on the Trust's board to continue his work with the club's finance team and other duties.

Since successfully standing for election at the December 2016 Linnets AGM, the 44-year-old Bignall has taken a keen interest and a full and active role in the operational side of the club, coordinating new sponsorship opportunities and attracting new partners.

Bignall is also the licensee at the new EVO-STIK League West club's Millbank Linnets Stadium and the club's new chairman outlined his ambitions for last season's North West Counties League Premier Division champions in a statement on Tuesday announcing his apppointment.

He said: "It's with mixed emotions I take on the role of chairman. Mark has done an amazing job to get the club this far over the last two years and I was saddened to see him step down. But I can't wait to start working with Jon and the rest of the board, and of course the management team, players and supporters. We have an amazing club and a lot to look forward to."

Urquhart, 41, a lifelong supporter of the Linnets and a manager in the warehousing industry,, is also the first team's kit manager. Co-opted earlier this year for a second spell as a member of the board, he believes that exciting times lie ahead for fans following their 2017-18 title success and promotion to the Northern Premier League.

He added: "Continuing the hard work and endeavour that Mark and Paul put in is not going to be an easy task but it is a challenge that I am really looking forward to getting my teeth into, alongside the new chairman Mike, who I have known personally for a long time. Hopefully we can work together to bring continued success to the club, both on and off the pitch."

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