Fans have been left shocked on Thursday night as Spennymoor Town manager Jason Ainsley leaves after 14 years and 11 trophies.
He was the longest serving manager within the top six tiers of English football, but now, he feels it’s time to call it a day.
The decision to make the change was agreed mutually by Jason and the Chief Executive earlier this week, and the club plan to talk more with their now former boss in the next few days.
📰 NEWS | Jason Ainsley leaves role as Moors boss.
Enormous news this evening as we announce that our manager of the last 14 years is leaving his role.
Full article, including comment from CEO Brad Groves, below 👇
— Spennymoor Town FC (@SpennymoorTown) December 10, 2020
Brad Groves, Chief Executive of Spennymoor Town FC, said: “Jason and I have been in agreement for a long time that there would be a clear moment where this change was needed; it has always been in the long term plan for the club.
“With the scale of our ambition and the multi-million-pound investment I have made in the club, there is now increased pressure on performance across the board. With the additional pressure the Covid-19 pandemic has brought, that moment has arrived quicker than we thought.”
The club statement continued as the Spennymoor manager leaves after 14 years: Jason will now be taking some time away from football to spend with his family. He also holds a senior role as Head of Key Stage Four at Mortimer Community College.
Once he has taken time to recharge his batteries, he plans to resume work within Mr Groves’ group of companies in a sporting role yet to be finalised.
14 years. Over 750 games. One man. One club.
— Spennymoor Town FC (@SpennymoorTown) December 10, 2020
Mr Groves continued: “As someone who said he was not sure he had what it takes to be a football manager when I joined the club, Jason has achieved some incredible things at the helm of the team.
“There are obvious ones like the FA Vase, the amazing trip to Guernsey, the FA Cup First Round Proper and all of the silverware. But there have been so many late comebacks, memorable performances, and crucial wins too. That is testament to the character he instilled in his players year after year.
“There is no doubt he will go down in history as one of the most influential and loved people ever at this club. He is already a legend within Spennymoor and is a cherished friend of my family, which will always be the case.
“This is not the end of Jason’s story with the club. There will be plenty of opportunities for supporters to see him and his family in person at the match in the future to show their gratitude for what he has done for Spennymoor.
“We are already in discussions for him to use his expertise and keep his passion for football and Spennymoor alive in other ways with us. But, for now, I am pleased he is taking some time for a well-earned rest.”
Assistant Manager Tommy Miller will take over as Interim First Team Manager on a full-time basis, starting this Saturday with the away trip to York City.
The structure of the management team of the club is under review during the interim period.
Jason was in charge for more than 770 games and won 11 trophies with Spennymoor Town during a charge up the non-league ladder where he guided the Moors to four promotions and the pinnacle of semi-professional football. The club now sits at the highest level in its history with the ambition and infrastructure to continue to chase further promotions.
Spennymoor Town’s media team will be sitting down with Jason over coming days to record his thoughts on bringing the curtain down on an extraordinary era of success and pride for both the club and himself.
Simon Weaver, manager of Harrogate town, who currently sit 17th in the League Two table, is the new longest serving manager, in charge for 11 years and 201 days.
As mentioned, fans were left shocked as the Spennymoor manager leaves after 14 years and 11 trophies…
Thank you for everything @Jayainsley7, were some unbelievable times and some testing times and you will always have a special place at the club and in many supporters hearts. ♥️ You’ll not need a wallet in Spenny for a drink which is just aswell since ya lost it 10 year ago 🤣🍻
— 🐯Spennymoor FC – Kirk Merrington Branch🐯 (@SpennyKM) December 10, 2020
Had the pleasure of working with @Jayainsley7 winning the FA vase and promotion being the highlight, he is one of the good guys, he should be proud of his time at the club, congratulations mate #holdyourheadhigh
— gavin fell (@gavlafell) December 10, 2020
Best of luck jay! @Jayainsley7 youve been amazing!! So sad to see you go!! Will always be JASON AINSLEY’S BLACK AND WHITE ARMY!!! XX
— nicolsmith_x (@nicolsmith1996) December 10, 2020
Quite surprised at the news tbh! Good luck @Jayainsley7, you’ve achieved great success at Spenny.
— Michael Boyle (@Michael_boyle2) December 10, 2020
Shocked, what a superb and loyal manager – Darlo fan
— Chris Wilkinson (@Chrissyrunner) December 10, 2020
First met @Jayainsley7 in our Fa Vase game, when we lost on penalties . Kept in touch ever since, with battles crossing at Grantham along the way.A great lad and how much he has achieved for your club is something to be proud of. Hopefully will be back in football soon👍
— Adam stevens (@Astevo1975) December 10, 2020
What a legacy you @Jayainsley7 have left at the club. For 14 years as manager and before that as a player, you have devoted your time to the club and brought this club into a totally new chapter and a level of the pyramid fans could only have dreamt of. You are a legend JA ❤️⚪⚫
— Niki Lawson (@lawsa1_988) December 10, 2020
@Jayainsley7 thank you for all you have done. A legend at the Moors.
So many great memories you have provided for us
— Spennymoor Town FC London Branch (@SpennymoorTownL) December 10, 2020
Thats a shock!
All the best for the future Jason, in whatever you do
— Claret & Blue Pixels (@Dazzla84_SSFC) December 10, 2020
What a journey j you should be very proud of your achievements if I have half the memories you have had at spenny In management I will be delighted I am sure there will be a statue built at the ground for you fully deserved #spennylegend 👏
— keith graydon (@KeithGraydon) December 10, 2020