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Tony Hemmings played the non-league circuit for a number of years with the likes of Hednesford, Macclesfield and Ilkeston, and also played for Chester City.
He is still involved with football at 41 as assistant manager at Gresley but that has not stopped him planning for the future, and carving out al alternative career – as he told Givemefootball.
Q: What have you been studying?
A: I am currently at Derby University and am studying for a BA Hons in Applied Community and Youth work. I am hoping to qualify and gain my degree next year.
Q: Will this help you in your current work?
A: Yes. I am a student officer at Bunton College and my job is looking after the welfare of the students and that involves a wide range of skills and abilities from tutorials, sexual health, road safety, liaising with the police, organising trips out as well as sports such as football and netball.
Q: How did the PFA help out?
A: I am an ex-player and needed information. So I asked about the courses and they spoke to me about my options, sent me the form and generally were very supportive. I got 50% for the course plus the same for books, stationary etc. I would send in the receipts and the PFA would refund the monies.
Q: Any advice you would give to current or former players?
A: My advice, especially in the current climate is to get as much support as possible. Use the PFA as there are some great guys in the service who will give you support when you really need it.
I have only been in the job a couple of years but am re-training and learning new skills and the PFAS are advocates of new skills.
Q: How important was the financial assistance given by the PFA?
A: It was a godsend. I have a young family to look after and I wanted to study at the same time as I was holding down a job. The help allowed me to take the money side out of education and allow me to access this qualification.
Q: Will the qualifications help you?
A: it will give me security in my post. It has opened new awareness for me and the qualifications will give me confidence when putting in for jobs. I was at level 4 but this degree will bring me up to level 7 and 8.
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According to those in non-league circles the Football Conference have asked for opinions on the Chester situation from all Blue Square Premier clubs earlier this week.

If Chester are removed from the league and their results expunged it will, of course, affect each club in a different way.

For example Gateshead Football Club, who lost all six points to Chester and are fighting relegation, and Luton Town who only picked up two from six and are pushing for promotion, would both benefit more that others.

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Former Chester City goalkeeper Phil Palethorpe has left Welsh Premier side Airbus UK Broughton to join Cammell Laird after failing to challenge first-choice keeper Kris Rogers for the gloves this season, according to reports in the local press.

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Chester City’s youngsters will now travel to face Marine in the next stage of the FA Youth Cup.  The match will be played at College Road later this month.

This was the reward for a well earned one nil victory away at Nantwich Town

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Chester City begin their second spell in non-league football with a trip into the unknown.

Chester’s 2009/10 Blue Square Premier campaign opens with a trip to Grays Athletic on Saturday, August 8. A club Chester City have never faced before in their long and illustrious history.

The return of the mouthwater international derby comes on September 26, when the Blues travel to Wrexham’s Racecourse Ground with the return fixture at the Deva Stadium on February 13.

The Blues finish their campaign, providing they do not reach the playoffs, at home to Crawley Town, another team they’ve never played before.

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