Leiston defender Brown and Walsham striker Wood join ambitious Stowmarket Town

Andrew Wood celebrates a goal for Walsham.

Andrew Wood celebrates a goal for Walsham. - Credit: James Ager

Stowmarket Town look like being a force to be reckoned with next season as their recruitment drive ahead of their first campaign at Thurlow Nunn Premier Division level, gathers momentum.

Ollie Brown, in action for Leiston last season

Ollie Brown, in action for Leiston last season - Credit: Picture: Steve Waller

Manager Rick Andrews, who led the team to promotion last season, has pulled off a double coup, signing prolific Premier Division striker Andrew Wood from Walsham-le-Willows and bringing in Leiston full-back Ollie Brown, who played 56 games for the Ryman Premier Blues in league and cup last term.

Former Bury Town forward Wood has joined Andrews’ promoted side after several seasons with Walsham, while Brown, who had a trial at National League Premier side Dagenham & Redbridge last season, has elected to drop down two divisions for personal reasons.

On Wood, who scored 25 goals in 33 games for the Summer Road club last season, Andrews said: “Andrew has always scored goals in a team which, no disrespect to Walsham, has not had the best of times over the last four years.

“That is encouraging for me and he has two great feet, is good in the air, quick, and several defenders I have spoken to have said that he is a real handful.”

On Brown, Andrews added: “That came out of the blue, but Ollie is going to be a parent shortly and the Ryman League can be quite intense in terms of travelling – it does not suit everyone’s personal life.

“He (Brown) wants to spend the first year with his daughter and was prepared to take a step down for a season and that works for us as I think he is the best wing-back in the county.”

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Brown’s long-term future is unclear with Andrews himself admitting that the former Needham Market man may only be spending a short time at Greens Meadow.

“It depends where we are this time next year,” explained Andrews, who has also signed Angelo Harrop and Scott Mitchell.

“Maybe he’ll love his football here and he could stay longer, but he is definitely good enough to play in the Ryman Premier Division.”

He added: “If we hit the ground running and are in the mix at the top next season, then I’ve made it crystal clear to the club that I would like to go up and the ball is already in motion to ensure the ground would be suitable for the next level up.”

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