Russell and Strike help with Blues ground plans
Two of Helston’s first team players are involved in the club’s bid to make improvements to the ground at Kellaway Parc.
Chris Strike and Tom Russell, co-owners of St Ives-based architectural services company, RA Design, have given Helston with advice about planning permission, and helped source a provider for the proposed 50-seater stand and new floodlights at the club's ground on the outskirts of the town.
If permission is granted and funding secured, the Blues can apply for promotion to the Peninsula League premier division.
Of course, there's the small matter of winning the league to worry about first.
But with Helston sitting second in division one west eight points behind leaders Godolphin with two games in-hand, there exists the very real possibility that Blues fans could be watching top tier football next season.
“The club are going for lots of different grants,” said Strike.
“It would enable us to enter lots of different competitions, and obviously we're looking for promotion this season so it would mean a lot to the club. Not a lot of clubs have much money, so we're just trying to help out in any way we can.
"After being here for so many years it’s nice to be involved. If you want to progress into the next league you need this: you need lights and a stand with a minimum of 50 seats.”
In the past, concerns about light pollution have led local residents to oppose the Helston's plans, but a meeting suggested by Strike and Russell and subsequently held at the club appears to have assuaged most of those fears.
“I consulted a planning officer and he suggested we speak to the neighbours about the lights, invite them to an open meeting and get them onboard," said Strike. "One of the local councillors turned up and as far as I’m aware it was a pretty positive meeting.”
If the plans go half as well as the club's current league campaign then Helston supporters have plenty to look forward to. There's a real sense around the place that the club is moving in the right direction - both on and off the field.
Both Russell and Strike were quick to praise manager Sid Taylor for the sense of togetherness he’s fostered amongst his players.
“Sid and Richie [Richie Full, first team coach] have been amazing really,” said Russell. “The team morale at the club is the best I’ve ever seen.”
Strike agreed, saying: “I think a lot of it’s down to Sid.
“I played with him at Falmouth and St Blazey, and he’s just one of those people you can’t help but get on with. He’ll admit himself he’s just learning as a manager but you can’t not get on with Sid really."
Helston play St Ives in the quarter finals of the Cornwall Charity Cup on Saturday. Kickoff is at 1.30pm.