Meliden FC chairman Steve Boyle talks about the club’s aims to Grassroots North Wales

Meliden FC chairman Steve Boyle

When Meliden FC begin the new 2021-22 season a lot will have changed since they last kicked a ball.

For one thing, they will be part of a brand new football pyramid, competing in the tier 4 North Wales Coast East Premier Division.

And a lot of new names have come on board at Meliden, experienced figures working behind the scenes to build the club a bigger future.

Grassroots North Wales spoke to chairman Steve Boyle about the latest developments at The Mine.

GNW

When did you take over as chairman? What state was the club in when you took on the role and what have you accomplished since?

Steve

I took over as club chairman in 2018 but have been involved with the club for 15 years as a volunteer covering a few different roles.

The club has never been cash rich but over the last few years things have got better for us through certain businesses helping with donations and the fundraising we do ourselves, so I think we are in a better place today than when I first came in.

GNW

You’ve brought in some very well known names in local football to develop the administration side of the club. Tell us about some of them

Steve

Graham Cartlidge

Pete and myself knew we had to bring in someone with experience to help us and Tony O’Reilly was recommended to us.

The changes in the way we now operate and think are down to him. We’ve appointed Graham Cartlidge as vice-chairman and Mike Mainwaring as secretary. Tony advised me to speak with them as he felt they would benefit Meliden.

From my conversations with Graham I knew he was the right person for the vice chairman role. With his knowledge it will benefit both the club and me. The same goes for Mike as secretary and Ron Squire as our media officer – the four of them have given me new optimism for the future of the club.

Media man Ron Squire

GNW

Peter Evans recently stepped down as secretary for unavoidable reasons. Tell us what Peter has meant to the club over the years

Steve

Where do I start with Pete? The first thing to say that he is Mr Meliden and without him I would not be here today chatting with you. When the club was on the brink of folding it was Pete who sorted things out just like he did when he took over as manager. I will always be grateful to him.

GNW

What are your hopes for the 2021-22 season? Are you happy with being in tier 4? How do you feel you will compete at this level?

Steve

My first hope for the 2021/22 season is that we can get back to playing competitive football safely. I’m more than happy to be in Tier 4; it’s a very strong league with good sides who will test us.

I have chatted with Gaz Jones (manager) and he has informed me that he has identified players he would like to approach and he feels if they are successful in bringing them in we will have a competitive side to make a challenge.

GNW

You will have seen the fairy tale achievements of neighbours Prestatyn Town since 2005 in rising up from tier 3 to at one-time being an established tier 1 Welsh Premier club. Have PTFC inspired you and do you feel you could ever match some of their achievements?

Steve

There is no other answer but yes – Prestatyn Town have been an inspiration for their achievements to lots of clubs and it would be a dream come true for Meliden to reach the heights that Prestatyn Town did and credit must go to Steve Jones and Tony Thackeray and the other chairman who backed the club but unfortunately we don’t have that at Meliden.

You never know hopefully one day someone might come in and back Meliden to reach the top tier in Welsh tootball or I might win the Euro Millions myself.

GNW

Are there any players at Meliden we should watch out for in the season ahead? Someone who might light up tier 4?

Steve

Meliden (orange and black) in action during a friendly back in November. Picture: Damon Mead

I think this is more of a question for Gaz and but I will say we have a group of lads at the club who have played at a higher level and are better than Tier 4 and I grateful that they are signed for us.

GNW

How is your ground The Mine looking? Are there plans to develop it to enable you to compete at a higher standard?

Steve

The ground has not changed in years Dave, we hope to have a section of hard standing down for pre-season.

I add that this is one of the things Tony has been working on; he has had a few meetings on the development of the ground and we have a plan in place to how we would like to see a new-look Mine but once again it is all down to funding and the location of the ground might hinder our development but only time will tell.

More Meliden action courtesy of Damon Mead

GNW

Do you feel there is potential in the Meliden area to get good support at matches?

Steve

We have a fairly loyal support from the village but it leads back to the previous question how can we improve those facilities for the fans experience to attract more people to watch as people don’t like standing in a field in bad weather.

With bringing in Mr Squire we will be using more social media to advertise games along with fixture posters and engaging with the village more directly and with the number of local derby games we should see larger crowds.

GNW

What are your aims for Meliden FC – Short term and Long term?

Steve

Short term is to grow each year and be up there challenging. We have drawn up a 5 year plan to where we would like to be and that ends with promotion to tier 2.
Look at clubs the likes of Gresford, Guilsfield and Ruthin. To me personally I can not see any difference between them and us you have to believe in what you are doing and keep moving forward. As you said it happened for Prestatyn Town why not us.

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