Jeune: Poppies won’t wait until last minute on ground issue

Kettering Town fans will know whether they will be watching their team at Latimer Park again next season before the end of the current campaign, according to chairman Ritchie Jeune
Kettering Town fans will know whether they will be watching their team at Latimer Park again next season before the end of the current campaign, according to chairman Ritchie Jeune

Ritchie Jeune insists Kettering Town won’t wait “until the last minute” as they bid to firm up where they will be playing their football in the medium and long-term.

As a new year dawned, the Poppies chairman delivered an update on the club’s ground situation after they were given a season-long lease to remain at Latimer Park last year.

Jeune revealed the club are trying to “engage with all parties” in an attempt to remain at the Burton Latimer venue, although other options are being explored.

But the Kettering chairman is adamant that the club don’t want any “mad rushes” as he seeks to ensure there is some stability once the current Evo-Stik Southern League Premier Division season is over.

“What we are not going to do is leave it until the last minute which we have done previously,” Jeune said.

“We want to know where we are going to be. We don’t want any uncertainty or any last-minute mad rushes.

“We have set a date internally for when this needs to be resolved and that is definitely before the end of the season.

“As it stands, we are probably an outside bet for the play-offs but this was always going to be a building year. It will be next season when we would like to push on and, at the very least, get into the play-offs.

“But, to do that, we want to ensure we keep players and any off-field uncertainty won’t allow that to happen.

“We are the sub-lease holders but the lease is held by someone else and that is managed by a management agent so there are a lot of people involved.

“We are trying to engage with all parties and, of course, what happens doesn’t just affect us but also Burton Park Wanderers as well.”

Jeune also confirmed that the Poppies, who are two points off the play-off places ahead of this weekend’s trip to Slough Town, can be promoted to the Vanarama National League North or South if they remain at Latimer Park.

He added: “Being promoted and staying at Latimer Park is not a problem.

“There’s more covered seating required but that’s the only element that we can’t fulfil at this moment in time.

“The key thing for us is knowing where we are going to be in the medium and long-term.

“We don’t want to go on having the same conversations.”