Gavin Chesterfield has been through just about it all at Barry Town United and following his side’s promotion to the Welsh Premier League in his 10th year at the club, we get a chance to take a look at the highs and lows he’s experienced managing the club.
Chesterfield was appointed in 2007, and at that point the future looked bleak at Barry, but despite the off field problems, Chesterfield went about his business in the most professional way and guided Barry to promotion in 2008.
Despite this, it was what was happening behind the scenes which stole all the headlines, with Barry on the verge of extinction.
But to Chesterfield that didn’t matter one bit and despite being withdrawn from the Welsh leagues all together in 2013, a fan-led fightback was launched – ‘Stand up to Barry’
Eventually, following a high court procedure, Barry would be reinstated into the Welsh Leagues and in the past four years there has been real progress and that is due to the work Gavin Chesterfield, the fans and secetary Dave Cole have put in to keep the club alive.
If you’re a Barry fan, you’d want Chesterfield knighted for what he has done for the club and the way he’s stuck by the club through thick and thin.
Now, at last, after all the worries – Chesterfield and his players can start thinking about the Welsh Premier League after returning following a 13-year absence – an absolutely startling achievement for everyone involved.
They can now hopefully look to the future, but there is no doubt the Welsh Premier League will be buzzing to welcome Barry back – they’re a club with culture and without the unbelievable work of Gavin Chesterfield it just wouldn’t be possible.
His dream has become a reality this season and if his players show the same desire and passion in the Welsh Premier League they’ll be an incredibly hard team to beat, especially at Jenner Park, with their vocal fans.
Its an opportunity for Chesterfield to kick Barry on even further now – he’ll want Barry competing with the likes of The New Saints again, and despite survival being the target, there is no reason why Barry can’t start looking at what Cardiff Met have done, in securing a Welsh Premier League play-off spot – a chance of obtaining European football and you can just imagine what it will be like, especially after all those years ago – in the glory days, when Barry beat Portuguese outfit FC Porto at Jenner Park.
(Photo credit: BarryTownUnted)