Chairman's Christmas Message

We are fast approaching the end of 2008, and on behalf of the Committee, Management Team, Coaches and Players, I would like to take this opportunity to thank the Sponsors, Supporters and Helpers for their tremendous support for 2008.

What an end we had to last season winning our last two home games against Deveronvale and Fraserburgh by the odd goal in five. This was just what was needed to end the season on a high and send the supporters home with a smile on their faces.

During the close season it was decided that the North Stand needed a complete refurbishment. John Briskham undertook the project manager responsibilities for this, and I must thank him for all his efforts in getting it completed on time and within budget. I also have to thank all the other committee members and helpers who gave up their time at weekends and evenings to assist in this project. I believe we now have a stand that WAFC can be proud of.

We also did some significant work on the pitch, again to a tight timescale. The header drain behind the bottom goalmouth was renewed and has highlighted the need for regular drain maintenance, and more work will also be needed in the next close season. A specialist contractor was also contracted to improve the below surface drainage of the pitch. This required specialist machinery that effectively lifted the turf like lifting a carpet and laying it down again afterwards. This has greatly improved the drainage and this season, despite all the rain, the park has remained playable with no surface water. We hope that this will result in fewer cancelled home fixtures due to inclement weather.

We are now sitting with 3 more points than we had at this time last year and I am sure by the end of the season we will be up there amongst the mid section solidifying our position as a mid-table Club, continually aiming to improve. We enjoyed a record trip in the Homecoming Scottish Cup, as the farthest North to far­thest South Club in the first round. Our national coverage from the "Sun" newspaper was tremendous and welcome as was their support for the team bus when we got Edinburgh City in the second round. Another fantastic journey saw us manage a draw in atrocious conditions which took them back to the Harmsworth Park for the replay. Alas it was not to be but what a fantastic experience it was, one we wish to repeat and improve upon in the coming years.

One very pleasing aspect is the positive feedback from supporters in the way the team plays football and I want to assure them we are not in the league to make up numbers, we want to be up there competing with the top teams. I look forward to seeing you all in 2009.

Wishing you all a Very Merry Christmas and a Prosperous New Year.

Colin Stewart

Chairman, Wick Academy FC