Bury Town chairman Russell Ward has tough task on his hands appointing new Blues boss

Russell Ward

Russell Ward - Credit: Gregg Brown

Bury Town chairman Russell Ward admits he has a tough decision on his hands after narrowing down the shortlist for the club’s new manager to three.

The Ryman League Premier Division club put assistant boss Ben Chenery in caretaker charge after Richard Wilkins’ departure following 14 years in the hotseat at Ram Meadow.

“We had 17 applicants for the job and I have now whittled that down to three,” revealed Ward.

“The interviews will now take place and we will hopefully be in a position to make an announcement by Wednesday lunchtime.

“I’m quite happy to say that Ben Chenery is still in contention. He’s been in caretaker charge, has helped us sign several players and has done his chances no harm.

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“It would be wrong to appoint him without hearing what the other candidates have to say though.”

Ward continued: “We’re a well-established non-league club, but we’re certainly not one of the big guns. That’s why I have to say that the standard of the applicants has really taken me by surprise.

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“Some ex-pros with really good credentials have shown interest and it’s going to be a really tough decision.”

Former Chelmsford City assistant manager Chenery, 37, worked as number two to Wilkins last season. The former Cambridge United and Luton defender and has already helped the club sign 12 players this summer.

Goalkeeper Ben Garnham was the latest to commit to the club yesterday, Ward saying: “That’s an absolutely massive signing.

“He had offers elsewhere, but we managed to persuade him that things are going to be okay here next year.

“Our record over the past few years speaks for itself – we’ve had two promotions and won numerous cups.

“Last year was a blip, but I think that’s all it was. We’ve learned lessons and, with a lot of hard work behind the scenes, I firmly believe we can get back on track.”

Upon leaving the club in May, Wilkins said: “The restraints now in place at the club, in my opinion, make the manager’s role untenable. Many quality players moved on at Christmas due to financial issues.”

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