Grantham Town manager Carlton Palmer and club chairman resign
Grantham Town issued a statement on Tuesday night to confirm that both manager Carlton Palmer and chairman Darren Ashton have stepped down from their positions at the football club.
Palmer took the decision to step down off the back of the announcement of Mr Ashton's departure.
Palmer said: “ I joined Grantham Town to work with and alongside Darren. Darren and I had a clear vision for the football club in the short and long term.
"Darren has showed great loyalty in me over recent weeks when results have not gone our way.
"Our aim was to remain in the league this season and build a platform to go forward, which involved use of the younger players within a budget. We have used several of the under-23 players and have signed some very good young players for the future.
"The loyalty shown in me by Darren I feel needs to be reciprocated and therefore with great sadness I have also decided to tender my resignation with the club.
"I would like to thank the supporters, my team and the playing staff for all of their efforts. I wish Grantham Town Football Club all the very best for the future."
The club expressed its thanks to Palmer for his hard work and dedication over the last few months, and wished him all the best for the future.
Following Mr Ashton's exit, Gingerbreads vice-chairman Sophie Cope will take over as interim chairman.
Sophie said: “I would like to place on record my sincere thanks to Darren for coming on board at arguably one of the most difficult times in non-league football, with the uncertainty around Covid and a time when all football clubs were subject to restrictions, playing behind close doors, putting huge pressure on clubs; the football club would not have survived without Darren’s commitment to the club.”
On Wednesday, Mr Ashton released the following statement: "It comes with great sadness that I'll be stepping down as chairman with immediate effect. My time as chairman has been eventful, to say the least. I've always had the club's best interests at heart and that's why I felt it was time for a change.
"I've left the club in a better state than I found it and stuck it out when a lot of people advised me to walk away.
"Grantham Town FC has great potential to move up the leagues with its facilities but it needs to bring the fans back in the gates. I tried this with the appointment of the manager and some good signings, but unfortunately it didn't work out.
"I said after the appointment of Carlton that he would be my last manager and I've stuck to my word. I still think Carlton was the right appointment and I know he would have kept us in the league, as for me we are in a false position with the way we have been playing. In football, you need that bit of luck which we haven't been getting.
"Carlton and I had a vision for the long term in bringing in experienced players as well as developing the youth through our academy that Louis and Mark [Bland] have done a fantastic job.
"Unfortunately, we didn't get to see our long term goal through."
After a few weeks of negotiations behind the scenes by Mr Ashton, the club are close to finalising a deal to bring on board new investors who will take control of the club in the coming weeks once all paperwork and FA approval has gone through.
Mr Ashton said: "I have been working behind the scenes to secure a new board of investors that I would be confident could move the club forward and in that, I am confident I have made the right choice.
"I wish all at the club the very best for the future and to the fans that continued to back me, I will always be grateful."