Development team management change

Thursday 2nd June 2022

After a hugely successful 2021-22 season, which saw him guide Royal Wootton Bassett Town Development to the Wiltshire Senior League Premier Division title, manager Steve Yeardley has taken the decision to stand down due to work commitments. Assistant manager Steve Shaw has also decided to relinquish his position.

The club are pleased to announce though that Ben Jarrett and Craig Jones have agreed to take over the Development team, and the duo will be joined in the dugout by Jonathan Davis.

Jarrett returns to the club where he was formerly a player, having featured for Bassett as a youth before breaking through into the Reserve and First teams in the mid-2000s. He subsequently went on to play for Purton, Clanfield and Wroughton.

Jarrett gained his first managerial experience in local Sunday league football before making the step up to manage Wroughton – alongside joint-manager Jones – last summer. The pair enjoyed a solid season in charge of the Weir Field side, guiding Wroughton to a tenth place finish, winning 15 games, losing 13 and drawing four.

Many thanks go to Wroughton for their cooperation and understanding over the past week in which talks have been held with the pair.

They will be joined in the dugout by Jonathan Davis, who has featured as a player for the Development team in each of the past two seasons, having previously played for the club's First and Reserve teams in the 2000s.

With the change in managerial team, the club would like to express their sincere thanks to Steve Yeardley and Steve Shaw for all their efforts since taking over the Development team in August 2019.

Their record has been outstanding. Over the course of 65 competitive fixtures, Yeardley and Shaw led the Development side to 46 wins, nine draws and just ten defeats.

And they were duly rewarded by steering the team to the 2021-22 Wiltshire Senior League Premier Division title – a feat that was also influenced by Mark Simpkins as coach.

While moving on from management, Bassett are pleased that both Yeardley and Shaw will remain with the club. Yeardley – Bassett's all-time leading men's appearance maker – has agreed to take on a position in a player development capacity, while Shaw will continue to remain involved with the club's thriving Veterans' Section.

Meanwhile, Simpkins has been promoted from his role as Development team coach to that of Head Coach across the club's Senior Men's Section. In his new position, Simpkins will have responsibilities covering the Men's First and Development teams as well as the Under 18 Floodlit side.


Pre-season training for the Development Team – as well as the Men's First Team – will begin on Thursday 23 June at the Gerard Buxton Sports Ground.

All players, new and returning, are welcome to attend as the build-up to the 2022-23 season gets underway.

Last modified on Thursday 2nd June 2022 at 17:58.