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Long-serving midfielder Tom Loynes speaks about his departure from Sittingbourne

Tom Loynes says his decision to leave Sittingbourne is not one he’s made lightly.

Loynes was the Brickies’ longest-serving player with 150 appearances across two spells.

Tom Loynes has left Sittingbourne Picture: John Westhrop
Tom Loynes has left Sittingbourne Picture: John Westhrop

The winger had been out since January with a knee injury but feels ready to play and believes moving on gives him the best chance to do that.

Brickies manager Chris Lynch says Loynes has been “hasty” but the 27-year-old has decided to seek regular football elsewhere, joining Faversham.

“It was a very difficult decision and not one I’ve made lightly," said Loynes, who made his Brickies debut aged 18 under Jim and Danny Ward.

“But it’s one I felt needed to be made for me going forward.

“I spoke to my family and we all came to the same conclusion that it was best if I leave.

“I’ve wished the manager the best and he’s wished me the best and I hope the club is successful for the fans.

“People always say Sittingbourne fans are one of the best in non-league football, which is true.

“Who knows, our paths may cross again and I might go back for a third time but I felt the decision needed to be made.

“Down the line it may be right, it may be wrong, but you’re not going to know until you’ve made a decision.”

Tom Loynes in full flow during a game against Ramsgate Picture by: John Westhrop
Tom Loynes in full flow during a game against Ramsgate Picture by: John Westhrop

Loynes had spells at Whitstable and Ramsgate - again under the Wards - before Nick Davis brought him back to Sittingbourne.

Goals and assists from out wide made him a big crowd favourite and he’ll always remember his time at Sittingbourne.

Loynes said: “I’ve got great memories. I think I’ve played every position - including in goal after Adam Molloy got sent off in the FA Cup against Thamesmead.

“We played Staines away in the next round and I scored to make it 1-1 and then Joe Taylor hit the bar before they went up the other end and scored.

“When I came back to the club we had Lewes away and the fans didn’t know anything about it.

“I rocked up and scored and we drew 2-2 and some fans have said to me they hold that dearly.

“I’ve had some nice comments from fans who’ve thanked me for staying when things were difficult under Aslan (Odev) last season and others jumped ship.

“I’ve got a Sittingbourne shirt framed at the top of my stairs - that’s how much the club means to me.”

In-form Sittingbourne visit Burgess Hill this Saturday.

Read more: The latest sports news in Kent

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