Gateshead to step down to a part-time outfit

Gateshead will move to a part-time set-up while new ownership is sought, after potential investors withdrew following discussions with the National League.

The would-be buyers “failed to satisfy various aspects of the competition’s requirements”, a club statement said.

Current owners Richard and Julie Bennett will continue their ownership but the football operation will no longer run on a full-time basis.

Richard Bennett said the interested party “withheld important information”.

“First and foremost in our minds is the long-term future of the club and Julie and I have decided to continue our ownership until such time as a credible buyer can be found,” Bennett said.

“Someone who, in our opinion, is right for the club.”

The husband and wife duo took over from Graham Wood in May 2015, with the aim of returning The Heed to the Football League for the first time since 1960.

They maintained the club’s full-time status, but promotion has eluded them as did an FA Trophy final this past season after Bromley beat them in the last four.

“We simply cannot afford to continue running the club on a full-time basis in the meantime and regrettably cuts in all areas of expenditure are a necessity,” Bennett continued.

“Naturally, we will look to remain competitive at the highest level of non-league football but we’ll need to become one of a growing number of part-time clubs in the national division.”

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