Bedlington Terriers appoint Ian Skinner as their new manager

Bedlington Terriers manager Ian Skinner.
Bedlington Terriers manager Ian Skinner.
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Bedlington Terriers have recruited a new manager to take over at the Northern League division one club.

Ian Skinner has been appointed to following Keith Perry’s decision to retire after 20 years at the club, during which time he won every major honour in the Northern League.

Skinner, who has previously been with Ashington, Brandon and Esh Winning, was assistant manager at Durham City until mid-March, when he and manager Adam Furness parted company with the Citizens following a 6-1 win over Bedlington.

And the former City man is under no illusions as to the task ahead.

He said: “When the opportunity to manage Bedlington Terriers came about it was something I gave a lot of consideration to.

“I live local to Bedlington and have seen some of the past glories and successes that this club has had over the years.

“The last couple of years have been difficult for the club, but the challenge of helping to take the club forward appealed to me.

“I believe that with a mixture of experienced players alongside some good younger players we can help move the club forward.”

And both Tony Burgess and David Leightley, who helped the club win a relegation battle last season, have agreed to stay on and work with the new manager.

Terriers chairman Ronan Liddane said: “I want to take this opportunity of thanking Tony Burgess and David Leightley for there outstanding contribution last season keeping Bedlington Terriers in the top flight of the Northern League, and I am delighted they have agreed to work with Ian.

“It was a critical part of the plan for the future of Bedlington that both lads stayed on.”

Burgess joined Bedlington Terriers from Ashington Colliers and has proved a huge success in his first season and will be the assistant manager.

Leightley stepped up from a successful period running the under-18s and is taking the role of head coach.

Liddane added: “David has been instrumental in bringing the youth through into the first team squad and they all now have Northern League experience, which can only bode well for the future of the Terriers.”

Skinner said: “I am looking forward now to meeting the players, planning pre-season and hopefully putting together a side which will take the club forward, which will then help attract the people of Bedlington to come out and support the Terriers in the 2014-15 season.”