Published: 10:00, 21 April 2021
| Updated: 11:10, 21 April 2021
Former QPR player Lee Barnett has agreed to join Ramsgate as their assistant manager while the boss has gone full-time.
Barnett will work alongside first team manager Matt Longhurst and coach Liam Taylor as they prepare for the 2021/22 Isthmian League campaign.
Speaking of the appointment, manager Longhurst said: “Lee is a great addition. He has worked with me at all my previous clubs but work and family commitments didn’t allow him to come into Ramsgate when I first came in.
“He really understands the way I work. He is a big character to have around the club he will bring additional experience at this level as a player and coach, which will enhance the group off the pitch as well as on it it.
“Barnett was a key component in building fantastic dressing rooms particularly at Corinthian and Erith and Belvedere where we spent longest together.
“His pedigree of previously being a professional player at QPR having a set back then a prolific spell as a player in this level of football so he can pass this knowledge on to the likes of Josh Ajayi who are in a similar position now.”
It’s been a busy time behind the scenes at the Southwood Stadium.
Experienced coach Paul Meade, a former Gillingham youth player, has also joined as under-23 player co-ordinator to help facilitate the players progression from under-16 to the first team.
Longhurst himself will be going full-time at the club, working not only as the first team manager but also community officer, overseeing close to 1,000 youth team members.
He will work closely with chairman James Lawson and the board to help grow the club on and off the pitch. Longhurst will also be running the club’s new apprenticeship scheme.
He said: “It’s an exciting time to be part of the club. It’s growing quickly and since I’ve been here it’s am amazing to see how much work has gone in and the rewards we are already seeing.
“The hard work now starts in continuing what we have started and I thank James, Ian and the rest of the board for the opportunity to help grow the club on and off the pitch.”
The club, meanwhile, have also announced that they have been granted permission for the installation of a 3G pitch at their stadium, which should be ready in time for the new season. Work is set to get under way next month.
Permission has also been granted for the installation of hard standing to the north of their pitch and new fencing.