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Page last updated at 10:15 GMT, Monday, 2 November 2009

Baldwin quits as Histon chairman

Gareth Baldwin
Histon have achieved multiple promotions under Baldwin's leadership

Gareth Baldwin has stepped down as Histon chairman after 17 years at the Glass World.

The 41-year-old has helped guide the club from the Eastern Counties League to the verge of the Football League.

Director Tony Roach takes over as chairman with Baldwin taking the role of vice-chairman.

Baldwin told BBC Radio Cambridgeshire: "I've been blessed with some wonderful memories and had the privilege of working with some tremendous people."

Baldwin's wife Lisa is leaving her role as club secretary and vice-chairman John Webster has also decided to leave his post.

Histon claimed a best ever finish of third in the Conference last season, but lost out to Torquay in the play-off semi-finals.

A number of star players left the club during the summer, along with influential coach John Beck, who departed in unexplained circumstances.

But with the club in a period of consolidation and reorganisation, Baldwin says now is the right time to step down.

"I've got a very senior position within my business and a little girl who's not yet two," he said.

"I spent nearly a week in hospital earlier this month and I thought it was much more serious than it eventually turned out to be - that was a bit of a warning."

Despite their enormous success, Histon have struggled to attract crowds large enough to sustain a large Conference-level wage budget.

Defender Lanre Oyebanjo spent last week on trial at Peterborough with the Stutes keen to cash in on their prize assets.

Nevertheless, Baldwin says he feels nothing but pride with what has been achieved during his tenure.

"In my 17 years and eight months I've left a legacy which I'm very proud of and I hope people are proud of that as well," he said.

"The ground is unrecognisable from when we picked it up, as is the team and the crowd, but we couldn't have done that without our sponsors and volunteers."

The Stutes local rivals Cambridge United are on the look-out for additions to their board following the departure of George Rolls and Terry Baker in August.

Baldwin has enjoyed close connections with the U's in the past, but says he intends to take a break from football.

"In the New Year I will assess what I want to do, but I have a lot of drive and a lot of passion and a lot to offer," he said.

Meanwhile, Tony Roach says he hopes to build on the success of the past few seasons.

"It's been a bit of a shock to the club because Gareth has done such a fantastic job, but I hope I can build on what has been achieved," he said.

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