Steve likely as new U's chief executive

COLCHESTER United look set make an internal appointment, to succeed Marie Partner as Chief Executive, with Steve Bradshaw the likely candidate.

Carl Marston

Colchester soccer

By Carl Marston

COLCHESTER United look set make an internal appointment, to succeed Marie Partner as Chief Executive, with Steve Bradshaw the likely candidate.


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Bradshaw is the current Chief Executive of the Colchester United Community Sports Trust, and he could well be the choice of chairman and owner Robbie Cowling to continue the good work of Mrs Partner.

After 21 years of loyal service to the U's, beginning with a job in the ticket office, Partner left the League One club on Friday in a surprise move.

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Speaking to the EADT last night, Mrs Partner said: “It was not a decision that was long and drawn-out. It was decided fairly quickly.

“I think in a way, 21 years is a long time to serve to one business, so it was never going to be the right time to leave. But I believe now is the time that will suit all parties best.

“Friday was a very, very sad day for me, but I made sure that I worked up until the last hour on Friday to maintain the professionalism that I have tried to put into the club. I have left a nice, clean desk for Monday morning!

“I've gained a huge amount of experience working for the club, especially in the last six years with the preparations for the club's move to a new stadium.

“I don't know what job I will do next, but it would be a shame to lose all that experience. I'm keeping an open mind and my options open going into the new year, but first I'll be having my first holiday of the year!” added Partner.

Always a popular figure at Layer Road, and more recently at the Weston Homes Community Stadium, she had a great relationship with all the managers (16) and chairmen (five) that have been involved with the U's over those last 21 years.

And several of those ex-Colchester personnel have been quick to send her messages of good luck.

“I've been flattered by all the kind messages that I've had. Managers Phil Parkinson and Geraint Williams were quick to ring me on Friday,” revealed Partner.

“Several players also sent me messages, like Kevin Watson and Karl Duguid. It's nice to know that I haven't gone unnoticed!

“I think that we have broken the backbone of most of the teething problems that have come with the move to the new stadium, and I'm very optimistic for the future.

“I also plan to keep coming back to watch some games, as a supporter,” concluded Partner.

The U's should announce the appointment of a new Chief Executive this week, with Bradshaw tipped for the position.

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