NORTH Leigh are searching for a new main sponsor after it was ruled that Bridle Insurance could no longer support the club, writes Michael Knox.

Bridle Insurance, based in the village, are owned by long-time North Leigh supporter Stewart Donald, who is the chairman of ambitious Vanarama National League club Eastleigh Town.

The football authorities regarded Donald’s involvement with both clubs as a conflict of interest.

So Donald, whose family have been connected with the Evo-Stik Southern League club for more than 20 years, has been forced to withdraw his company’s shirt sponsorship, which started last season.

His parents Ian and Jan are presidents of the club.

The dual interest came to national attention when the Millers were drawn against Eastleigh in the fourth round of this season’s FA Cup.

There was no fairytale result for the Millers, with the Hampshire club winning 6-0, but Donald donated the gate receipts to the west Oxfordshire club.

However, North Leigh enjoyed a highly successful first full season under manager John Brough.

In addition to their historic FA Cup run, they finished just one place out of the play-offs in Division 1 South and West and crowned their campaign by winning the Oxfordshire Senior Cup.

“We need to replace that large chunk of sponsorship if we are to compete with other teams at the top end of our league,” said Brough. “We must be able to attract players to maintain the club’s progression.

“I know we struggle for big gates at Eynsham Park, which makes it all the more important that we get plenty of sponsorship.

“We are looking for local companies to become associated with a highly successful club – and we want that success to continue.”

North Leigh chairman Pete King said the club had several smaller sponsors, adding: “We can’t praise the Donald family enough for their support over many years.”

“We are now looking for other companies to back the club.”

Those interested can contact King on 07974 991269.