FIXTURES
All clubs have received the FA survey and been able to give their views on how this season should end. But it is the FA who will make the final decision which is not expected for several weeks.

It is interesting to note that the National League are now facing problems as future government support will be in the form of loans rather than grants. The National League North and South divisions have been suspended for two weeks with immediate effect.

CANARY PODCAST WITH FREDDIE CARDY
Marac and I recently caught up with Kane Smith for the Canary Club Podcast, and both parts of the interview are available to listen to now:

In Part 1 of our interview with Boreham Wood flying wing-back Kane Smith, Kane discusses the season so far at Meadow Park, including the club’s record-breaking FA Cup run and defeat to Millwall, the loss of Sorba Thomas to Huddersfield and playing against former teammates in the National League. Kane looks back on injury woes and play-off heartbreak, as well as talking about his team-mates and manager Luke Garrard amongst many other talking points. Listen below…

In Part 2 of the interview we look back on many fond memories from Kane’s three years at Hitchin Town FC, as well as even going back to his youth at Rushden and Diamonds. We ask about the differences between playing at Step 3 and the National League as well as his trials at a number of clubs, including West Bromwich Albion. Finally, Kane tells some hilarious stories from his Hitchin days, as prompted by Brett Donnelly- the driving test bet, the Benidorm arrest, and much more! Here it is…

If you would rather listen to this another way, Ollie Bayliss will be playing out the full interview on his Non-League Show on Sunday afternoon (2pm-4pm), which you can listen to on BBC 3 Counties Radio. We really appreciate Ollie’s support, and we hope you enjoy listening!

BRIAN SMITH
Sadly Brian Smith died just before Christmas at the age of 90. He played 55 games for Hitchin between 1952 and 1958 scoring 17 goals. He was president of the South Midlands League and was well known in local football circles. We send our condolences to Brian’s family.

ACADEMY UPDATE BY MICHAEL JONES
All Academy players have continued their education online with our education provider SCL. This allows all players to complete their assignments from home with the support of our tutor Matthew Winch.

The training element of the course has been in the form of fitness classes specific for footballers and this is all completed online. As well as these classes we have also introduced Psychology sessions into our normal week. The idea behind this is to help our students and staff with their mental health as well as prepare them for difficult scenarios in life and hopefully improve their general health and wellbeing.

We are also in the process of organising guest speakers to talk through their experiences, so they can inspire and encourage our group of players and staff to excel.

Recruitment for the 2021/22 season is still continuing, if you are interested in applying for the Academy or want further information on what we offer please use the links below.

Education information
https://www.wearescl.co.uk/pro-direct-hitchin

Register for a trial
https://www.northhertsarena.co.uk/next-trial-dates

GROUND UPDATE
Steve Barker and his team continue to keep the Top Field pitch in order. They had to prepare the pitch for the recent Luton Under 21 game with Fulham and then do the repair work afterwards.

We have taken the opportunity to have contractors carry out essential maintenance on our floodlights during the lockdown.

LEN LEROUX
Len Leroux our former ground and Supporters Club chairman continues to make good progress in his recovery from Covid-19. I spoke to him on Friday and he again sounded better than the previous week although he still gets easily tired after any walking. But he is definitely improving and we all hope he is back to normal as soon as possible.

BY ROY IZZARD