Barnstaple will be hoping for stability ahead of changes to the lower tier of the Devon Cricket League.

Just staying put is the best Barnstaple and Pilton can hope for this season – and that will be a challenge.

Relegation into the D Division East plunged B&P down to a level of cricket they have not played in since 1994.

Looming reorganisation of the league means no promotion from either D Division this season. The top three teams retain their places and the rest drop down into a proposed new E Division East populated partly by 2nd XIs.

That’s not an attractive proposition for a team playing B Division cricket as recently as 2014.

Relegation prompted the departures of Tom Popham – 399 runs last season – and James Thomas to North Devon.

Incoming are Jason Smith and Adam Page, a batter and bowler respectively from NDL side Bratton Fleming, and the return of keeper-batter Andy Barton after a break from the game.

B&P should get a full season out of off-spinner George McEndoo, who was worked tied for part of last season.

Captain Steve Moore can see a tough summer ahead, which he will be tackling with a young side.

Moore’s son Jack, just back from skippering Devon U15s in South Africa, will be handed an early slot in the batting order with a brief to accumulate runs.