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CHIPPENHAM TOWN: Bluebirds should stay local for next boss, says Perrin
FORMER Chippenham Town boss Darren Perrin has played down the possibility of a return to the Hardenhuish Park hotseat - but has urged the Bluebirds to get back in touch with their local roots in their hunt for Nathan Rudge's successor.
The Bluebirds have started their search for a new manager following Rudge's shock resignation on Wednesday morning, his former assistant Steve Winter taking caretaker charge for this weekend's Calor League Southern Premier Division clashes against Hitchin Town at home and local rivals Frome Town away (Monday).
Inevitably, having not yet having returned to football management following his departure from Frome Town at the end of last season, Perrin's name has been linked with the permanent vacancy.
But while admitting he is ready for a return to the game, the man who guided the club to the Southern League play-off final and FA Cup first round proper during a tumultuous 18-month spell between July 2005 and January 2007, insisted he was not actively pursuing the role.
"I've had no contact with Chippenham, they've had no contact with me and, to be fair, I wouldn't expect them too,'' Perrin told the Gazette & Herald this morning.
"I only learned this morning that Nathan (Rudge) had left. It's nice to be linked but it's all news to me.
"I certainly don't see me contacting them and I'm not arrogant as to believe they will contact me. At the end of the day, they know what I'm capable of doing and have done at clubs like Chippenham, Paulton Rovers and Frome.''
Perrin succeeded former Swindon Town striker Steve White at Hardenhuish Park in July 2005 and, in his first season in charge, not only masterminded the lengthy cup run but also took the Bluebirds to a second successive play-off final, where they were beaten 3-2 by a late Bedford Town goal.
He fared less well in his second season and his spell ended in acrimony when he was suspended from hie role in January 2007 after four successive defeats.
Around three weeks later, he was officially sacked and replaced by his assistant Adie Mings, later accepting an out-of-court settlement with the club.
He added: "I loved my time at Chippenham. It is a good club and a big club and although it ended somewhat bitterly, it was a happy time at the club and for me.
"We got to the play-off final and the first round proper of the FA Cup and there were some good times.''
Perrin did however, admit the start of the football season had reignited his desire to return to the game.
He was surprisingly axed by Frome Town in March after a successful three and a half year spell in which he guided the Robins out of the Southern League's Division One South & West and into the Premier Division in his first full season in charge, following up with 12th place in the top flight in the next campaign.
He added: "I've had a nice break from football, which I've enjoyed and I've probably recharged my batteries.
"I am looking to get back into it, if the right apportunity comes along at a club that shares my ambitions, but I'm not in a rush to do so.
Bluebirds chairman Neil Blackmore has already received interest in the Town post, while Winter - who ironically played under Perrin at Hardenhuish Park in 2006 - has also indicated that he'd like to succeed Rudge.
Perrin though hopes his former club won't look too far afield for their new man.
"I hope whoever the club go for, they get it right,'' he added. "I hope it's a local person. I do feel they need to try and find a local manager to get the identity of the club back a bit.
"A lot of local lads have departed and you need to get those lads back playing for their local big club.''
NEWS OF A FORMER LOCAL MANAGER THROWING HIS HAT INTO THE RING FOR THE BLUEBIRDS' JOB TOMORROW MORNING AT GAZETTEANDHERALD.CO.UK/SPORT AND HAVE YOUR SAY IN OUR ONLINE POLL ABOVE THIS STORY
DON'T FORGET TO FOLLOW ALL THE ACTION FROM TOWN'S LEAGUE CLASH WITH HITCHIN TOWN AT HARDENHUISH PARK WITH SPORTS WRITER DAN BARNES AND BLUEBIRDS LIVE ON SATURDAY AFTERNOON
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