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Sydenhams to end sponsorship of Wessex League after 17 years

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Ringwood Town playing in Sydenhams Wessex League action.
Ringwood Town playing in Sydenhams Wessex League action.

SYDENHAMS has announced that its sponsorship of the Wessex League will end after the next season.

The builders’ merchant – a Poole-based company which has 35 stores throughout Hampshire, Dorset and the surrounding areas – has sponsored the league since 2003.

Sydenhams Group managing director Lee Wright said in a statement: “It has been a privilege for Sydenhams to have worked with the Wessex League over the past 17 years, but we have now taken the difficult decision that 2020/21 will be our last season as a sponsor.

“The league has meant a huge amount to us all at Sydenhams, and we would like to take this opportunity to applaud the exceptional work of the Wessex League and everyone associated with it.

He added: “We are truly honoured to have been part of something so special for nearly two decades and wish you all the very best success for future.”

Nick Spencer, the vice-chairman of the Wessex League, also thanked the company for helping the league over the years.

He said: “The league and its member clubs have benefited immensely from the sponsorship by Sydenhams Ltd, during an unprecedented 17-year partnership, making it possible for the league to develop and be considered by many as one of the best step five/six leagues in the country.

“The decision is disappointing, although understandable in the current economic crisis brought about by the coronavirus pandemic.

Spencer added: “In thanking Sydenhams Ltd for their sponsorship, on behalf of everyone involved with the league, I would like to recognise the support from Ray Pride (Sydenhams finance director).”

Christchurch FC manager Ollie Cherrett told the A&T that he believes the league has got stronger because of their sponsorship over the years: “All clubs and leagues rely heavily on sponsorship and like everyone at this difficult time I am sure was a difficult decision for them.

“The league has got stronger and last season's title race was best for years although we were unable to finish it, unfortunately. Hopefully, this will help the league secure a new sponsor.”

Brockenhurst manager Pat McManus also commented on the move saying the company “will be a hard act to follow”. He told the A&T: “Obviously it’s a shame Sydenhams have withdrawn their sponsorship from 2021, but it’s not wholly unexpected based on the economic landscape.

“Their long-term support for the league and by proxy its clubs have been unrivalled compared to other leagues at this level.

“However, based on the notice given, I trust the officers of the league to acquire a replacement which hopefully proves to be as successful.”

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