The Ryman Football League
Published 7th June 2012
......the Ryman League Division One South club’s new chairman following long-serving Joe Brownett’s decision to step down after twenty-three years, at the AGM.
Johnson, a former referee born in Kettering, Northamptonshire and having moved to Kent in 1987, joined the club a little over two years ago; previously a long-serving referee known to many across Northants, Kent and the Home Counties as he refereed at Contributory League Level and indeed at Whitstable where he was best known for sending-off an Oysterman in a Kent County FA Final to which he was reminded at the AGM!
Since his retirement from refereeing almost six years ago has coached, mentored a assessed referees before ‘Gamekeeper turned Poacher’ on his arrival at the Belmont. His black & white no nonsense style of officialdom wildly remembered by many a club and player, especially in Kent earned him the respect of others but not necessarily many fans!
One of his proudest of many memories within Referee circles was his ‘late call’ to duty as 4th Official for SKY TVs live coverage between Fulham – Aston Villa.
Having joined the ‘Board’ of Whitstable Town as vice-chairman, he quickly incorporated the secretary’s role two seasons ago stepping into the breach by the departure of the then secretary as a stop gap measure; prior to becoming a Director of the Isthmian Football League Ltd only last year.
Johnson offered reassurance at the AGM that the foundations laid by his predecessor would be continued, however as with any new appointment change would be imminent; on Gary’s agenda is…..
The reformation of the Supporters Association
Establishing closer links with the business hub & Community of Whitstable & nearby conurbations
The rejuvenation of the Clubs principle income stream – the Club House
Enhancing & developing of Youth Football within WTFC
Plus much more!
Much emphasis was put on collaboration & unity in building closer links throughout the club and the Town.
Naturally delighted with his appointment, he continued as to how exciting he believed the Clubs Future was under the stewardship of the Football Manager Justin Luchford who is completing a re-structure of the Football Management of which further news to follow.
The club which offers its ‘product’ within the Ryman League South, is to continue to field a reserve team within the Kent League whilst also directly running both an under-18s and under-15s within the Kent Youth League next season.
Johnson was delighted to confirm the First Team shirt sponsors for next season as D&J Tyres of Herne Bay, a family run business and trading since 1968.
(Is this a unique move for this level of former referee in becoming chairman of a Step 4 club?)