SHARON Claridge has been voted in as the first chairwoman in North Leigh’s 112-year history.

She had stood out since becoming the Millers’ secretary two years ago and replaces Ed Martin, who will remain on the club’s board.

Although not the first chairwoman in the Southern League, Claridge does join an exclusive group alongside Halesowen Town’s Karen Brookes and Blackfield & Langley’s Claire Sinclair.

She said: “It has been a very strange period since March, not just for the club but pretty much everyone.

“An unbelievable amount of work has been going on behind the scenes to not only ensure we have a club to welcome fans back to but also to really try and take that next step.

“We’ve seen the importance of building a team just as good off the field as it is on and are now in a fantastic position for the first time in a long time.

“I am so delighted to be at the helm and help steer the future of this historic club and to know how much support I have got.”

Outgoing chairman Martin said: “Since joining as club secretary in 2018, Sharon has been at the heart of everything.

“She is one of the most hardworking people I’ve ever met and would do anything for this club.

“The UK lockdown has brought with it a real opportunity to assess our long-term future and untapped potential.

“We have some really big plans for North Leigh over the next few years and the key to that is going to be organisation.

“This is something I’ve found challenging since moving back to the West Midlands in November, but I’m still committed as ever to North Leigh.”

On the field, Craig Dore’s squad continues to come together.

Forward Lance Williams has agreed to re-sign for the new Southern League Division 1 Central season, while midfielder Harry Grant is back for a third campaign.