This weekend marks Brian Cosgrave’s final game Gosport Borough`s secretary as the curtain falls on 27 years in the role.
This Saturday will mark the end of an era. Not just because Gosport play their final game in the National League South but because it will be Cosgrave’s final home league game as secretary.
Cosgrave, has been in the post for 26 years since joining the club from Locks Heath FC in 1990 and is only the second secretary the club has ever had after he took over from Bill Adams, who had been in the chair for 46 years.
The long-serving secretary finally decided to call time on his career earlier this season, although not making his decision public until recently. He now plans to spend more time with his wife Jenny and to his other hobbies.
In his time as secretary, Cosgrave has been part of several important phases in the club’s history, including The Boro’s previous relegation to the Wessex League in 1992, the gradual re-building of the club during the 1990’s before their eventual rise back through the leagues from 2007-2013 and the FA Trophy and FA Cup successes in 2014/15. Sadly, his final season is tinged with sadness with the heartbreak of relegation from the National League.
He has been the one constant during many successful and turbulent phases of the club’s recent history whilst many managers from Roger Buckland, Roger Sherwood, Barry Cook, Mick Marsh and of course Alex Pike have been in the dug-out. Many generations of players have been signed and released by him.
He also won and commanded the respect of not just everyone at Gosport Borough but in local football and in the wider non-League community and has been the recipient of numerous awards for services to football. Another is on its way when he accepts an award from Gosport Borough Council for services to football.
As well as doing secretarial work, Cosgrave also had a hand in many other jobs and aspects of day to day life at Privett Park – more recently known as the Aerial Direct Stadium.
The hunt is now on for his replacement, the successful candidate set to become only the third secretary in the club’s 73-year history.
One internal candidate is currently in talks with the club’s directors but applications are also being invited from anyone outside the club wishing to accept the role for the 2017/18 season. Cosgrave would mentor the successful candidate and help them settle into the role.
Gosport Borough would like to extend its sincere gratitude to Brian Cosgrave for his many years of service and wishes him a happy retirement. One thing is safe to say, the club will never be the same again.