FORMER Gloucester Rugby prop Andy Deacon has left his position as Cirencester’s director of rugby.

The club revealed the news in a statement on its website this afternoon.

Luke Stratford (forwards coach) and Harry Cochrane (backs coach) will also not be accepting the club’s offer to continue in their respective roles for the 20/21 season. 

Deacon steps down after five years at the helm at the club. 

In the statement, Deacon said: “It was an extremely hard decision to make when I handed my resignation to the chairman and president, but I feel it is time to move on in my rugby career and hand over to a new face while I consider other opportunities.

“I have had a fantastic experience overseeing the senior rugby at the club, with many highs and a few lows, meeting some great people along the way and creating friendships that will last beyond my time at the club.

“After five seasons I believe a new face and voice will re-energise the players and I leave Cirencester in good shape with regards to the way it has been professionally run; the facilities and set-up are fantastic for any player and the strong youth section will deliver dividends in the coming years.”

“I wish all at Cirencester the very best when rugby is back with us and for the opportunity to have played a big part over the years. Thanks also to the Executive Committee for their full support, along with Alasdair Wood (team manager) who has been there with me throughout my time at the club. Good luck for the new season ahead."

Nick Theakston, president said: “I thank Deacs for everything he has done during the last five years. Over and beyond running the rugby side of the club, he has been a great team player and dedicated committee member. I wish him all good fortune in his next rugby role.”

Chairman Dave Reeves added: “Deacs has been a huge part of the club over the last five years and it will be sad to say farewell to such a fantastic character. 

“His selfless commitment, hard work, determination and above all humility are just a few of the many qualities he has bought to Cirencester in his role as DoR. Throughout his tenure he has maintained a professional and can-do approach to the development of the players and wider club; overseeing a significant period of change within the senior squad that he has tackled with his usual enthusiasm and no-nonsense style. 

“As a result, Deacs leaves the club in great shape, full of young and eager players looking to continue Cirencester’s success. The club and I wish him the very best of luck in his future endeavours and that the friendships he has forged during his time at Cirencester endure for many years to come.”