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Vanarama Conference Premiership

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Conference may need new sponsor

The Conference may be looking for a new sponsor with the future of Blue Square Bet in doubt.   The future of Blue Square Bet , who are in their sixth season of sponorship, is being reviewed by owners Rank Group.   The business is running at an operating loss and Rank wants to concentrate its resources on its bingo and casino activities.

Pie high

Kidderminster Harriers have defended their £4 pies against criticism that they are the most expensive football grub in the country.   However, the club argues that the 'home baked' cottage pies are a meal in themselves.

Bargain basement football

The recent financial troubles of Hereford United raise questions about just how much it does cost to run a club in the lower divisions, interpreted here to mean League 2 and the Conference.

Consider wages first.   I have been told not that a not untypical wage in the Conference is £500 a week. Interestingly that is equivalent to the median gross (before tax) wage in the UK which was £501 a week in 2011 (and probably hasn't changed much since then).

Can Hereford United avoid administration?

As it so happens, I had a pleasant day out in the mild autumn weather in Herefordshire yesterday.  The road signs at the county border showing a bull and a 'we can' slogan got me thinking about the fate of Hereford United.   When I got home there was an e-mail directing me a statement by the club about its financial plight.

Bulls hit financial trouble

Relegation from League 2 to the Conference has produced financial challenges for Hereford United and part-time football is one of the options being considered.  However, most Conference sides are now full time and such a move could undermine a push for promotion.   The Bulls are currently 12th out of 24 teams.

When does prudent become stingy?

When does prudent become unwisely stingy?   That is the question being posed about new Conference outfit Hyde United.   They were 33-1 outsiders to go up last year and it seems that their own game plan was to avoid relegation.

A certain financial caution is understandable.   The club was wound up because of tax debts of about £120,000 in September 2009.  But then £8,000 was raised in a bucket collection at Manchester City.  This funded an appeal and the judge found in their favour.

Kettering quit Conference

Kettering Town's debts have led them to resign from the Blue Square Bet North where they had been relegated.  They will play in the Southern League Premier next season.

The club's debts total £1.2m.   Former chairman Imraan Ladak and other directors owed money have agreed to write off their loans and to leave £402,000 outstanding.   Creditors will get about 10p in the pound as part of a three year company voluntary arrangement.    

Minstermen on the up

York City languished in the Conference for eight years, showing what a difficult league it is to get out of. But now they have escaped in some style, winning the FA Trophy and promotion through the play offs from the Blue Square Bet Premiership.

New shirt deal for Kiddy

Kidderminster Harriers have signed a new shirt deal with tool hire firm Hire-It! based on the Worcester Road.   The firm will replace OGL Computer on the front of the shirt until the end of the 2013-14 season after a five figure deal was secured.

Darlo to play at Shildon

Darlington are to ground share with Northern League Shildon next season.   This will involve a ten mile journey from Darlington for fans.   The other venue considered at Bishop Auckland would have involved a similar journey.