It's not been quite as busy a week at Chester FC .

But, then, that was always going to be a tall order given the amount of business that was done in the days immediately after the end of the season.

However, a fair bit has been going on across the Vanarama National League since our first Conference Call of the summer ...


Wrexham manager Dean Keates stated last week that he was 'fairly confident' the final two senior players he had offered contracts to would put pen to paper.

But Russell Penn scuppered those hopes when he turned down the fresh terms offered to him by the Dragons in favour of re-signing for Gatehsead , who are nearer to his family in York.

But Keates did receive a boost when goalkeeper Chris Dunn agreed a new one-year deal.

Wrexham goalkeeper Chris Dunn

Barrow AFC

There was a shock when Barrow boss Paul Cox included the name of captain Danny Livesey on the list of players he will be releasing.

The vastly experienced centre-back won five awards at the club's end-of-season presentation evening after leading the Bluebirds to a seventh-placed finish.

But Livesey has been shown the door along with another surprise departee, Shaun Beeley, as well as Andy Coughlin, Lindon Meikle and Inih Effiong.

Barrow, who still have former Chester hitman Ross Hannah under contract, have offered a new deal to Elliot Newby and have taken up contract extension options on Moussa Diarra, Alex Ray-Harvey and Paul Turnbull.

Tranmere's Jay Harris and Barrow's Danny Livesey

Hartlepool United

Cox, meanwhile, has been linked with the vacant manager's job at Hartlepool, who were relegated alongside Leyton Orient from League Two last weekend in the most dramatic and cruelest of fashions after Newport County scored late on to stay up.

It is the first time in 96 years that Pools will be playing outside of the Football League and that will decrease their chances further of keeping hold of star winger Nathan Thomas.

Middlesbrough are believed to have moved ahead of Sheffield United in the race for his services.

Barrow boss Paul Cox
Barrow boss Paul Cox

AFC Fylde

From a club going down to one coming up.

Fylde, who are said to be interested in released Barrow right-back Beeley, have announced their retained lsit.

The Vanarama National League North champions have released former Chester defender Dom Collins as well as Richie Baker, Tom Kennedy and Steve Williams, exercised the option of extending James Hardy's contract, and confirmed they are in negotiations with the rest of their out-of-contract players.

That list does not include Andy Bond, Dan Bradley, Brendon Daniels, Sam Finley, Josh Langley, David Morgan, Danny Rowe and Rhys Taylor, who are all under contract for next season.


Conference Call reported last week that the Cards had released long-serving manager Garry Hill.

And since then they have appointed former Southampton youth coach and England Under-17 assistant manager Anthony Limbrick as Hill's replacement.

Limbrick is said to have impressed at his first press conference...

But you would never have guessed from this photo...

Torquay United

Fresh from securing their survival, the Gulls have offered new contracts to player-of-the-season Luke Young, captain Courtney Richards, Brendan Moore, Sean McGinty, Ruairi Keating, Dan Sparkes and Aman Verma.

But top-scorer Brett Williams, along with Giancarlo Gallifuoco, Shaun Harrad, Lathaniel Rowe-Turner and Myles Anderson, have yet to be given fresh terms to mull over.

Ben Gerring and Charlie Duke have been released.

Aldershot Town

To the other end of the table, and losing play-off semi-finalists Aldershot have agreed contracts with Mark Smith, Cheye Alexander, Nick Arnold, Jake Cole, Will Evans, Shamir Fenelon, Jake Gallagher, Idris Kanu, Jim Kellermann, Matt McClure, Bernard Mensah, Manny Oyeleke, Scott Rendell and Callum Reyno.

But it is unlikely the Shots will be able to re-sign Kundai Benyu. Tottenham Hotspur, West Ham, Aston Villa and Celtic among the clubs interested in signing him once his deal with Ipswich Town expires in the summer.

Best of the rest

Maidstone United, who are going full-time next season, have made striker Delano Sam-Yorke's move from Woking a permanent one and agreed a new one-year contract with defender Seth Twumasi.

But the Stones have yet to agree deals with Tom Mills (glazier), Alex Flisher (carpenter), Bobby-Joe Taylor (railways) and Reece Prestedge (plumber), who are weighing up whether to give up their day jobs.

Jamie Coyle and Anthony Acheampong have already left the club with the former subsequently taking over as boss of Welling United.

George Porter and Daniel Johnson have signed new contracts with Bromley .

Sutton United have signed experienced midfielder Kenny Davis from Boreham Wood .

And Dover Athletic have offered fresh terms to Sam Magri, Ricky Modeste, Mitch Walker, Richard Orlu, Tyrone Sterling, Jamie Grimes, Aswad Thomas, Ross Lafayette and Bondz N'Gala, as well as exercising their contract extension on Mitch Pinnock.