HARWICH and Parkeston's Mike Wallace wants to help his club both on and off the pitch after being appointed in a new director of football role.

While continuing as first-team assistant manager, he is taking on new responsibilities to take some of the heat off chairman Tony Armstrong, vice-chairman Chris Smith and secretary Andy Schooler.

He will work on areas such as marketing and publicity and become a go-between between the different facets of the club.

The end result, he hopes, is that Harwich become the "heartbeat of the community".

"It's not going to affect my role with the first team," said Wallace, who works alongside manager Kieron Shelley.

"But we want to build the club both on and off the pitch and this new role will hopefully help in that respect.

"It'll give me a chance to oversee the different facets of the club, not just the first team, and allow me to draw on my sport development degree, having previously worked in sport development roles.

"I'm going to get involved with marketing and publicity, making sure the club gets maximum exposure on social media, and I'll be working closely with people like Tony.

"I want to take some of the heat off him and together we can work on ways to help develop the club off the pitch, so it becomes the heart of the community.

"And in terms of things on the pitch, it's all part of our plan to merge and integrate the different parts of the club - the first team, reserves and youth section.

"I'll be working with (reserve-team manager) Gavin Hewitt and his assistants, Matt Valentine and Greg Borthwick.

"We want to ensure every area of the club is moving in the same direction and I'll basically be the go-between.

"We want to take the club as far and high as possible."

Harwich returned to step six football last season and finished an impressive fifth in Thurlow Nunn League first division south.

They hope to build on their success and be among the title-challengers next term.

Wallace has high hopes and wants everyone connected with the club to feel a sense of pride - not just the first team.

"Kieron and I knew when we arrived that this wasn't going to be an overnight project and hopefully this is another step in the right direction," he said.

"Whether you're an under-eight player at the club or a first-teamer, everyone will have the same opportunity and pathway and we want all our players, of whatever age, to have the same sense of pride when they wear the badge.

"Anyone interested in getting involved at the club can contact me on 07507 862997."

Meanwhile, Harwich have confirmed a couple of new recruits for next season.

Former Brantham Athletic man Sean Gunn is joining, as is Sam Cripps, from Coggeshall United.

They follow in the footsteps of Kevin Coyle, Michael Murray and Adie Cant.

Harwich's first pre-season friendly is at home to FC Clacton on July 2.