Martin Tideswell: Good news keeps flowing at Vale Park
TO have so much good news in seven days should have put a smile on the face of every Port Vale fan.
It has been a week of milestones which has delivered relief and happiness in equal measure.
The unveiling of the long-awaited Roy Sproson statue on Saturday was an event for young and old alike to savour.
Eleven years in the making, involving the efforts of hundreds of people, the finished product is an inspirational masterpiece.
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The fact that so many people were there to witness the ceremony spoke volumes about the high regard in which the Sproson family is held.
The York game itself was something of a damp squib – a poor performance and a game in which we were lucky to escape with a point, if truth be told.
However, that was swept under the carpet on Tuesday when news finally filtered through that the club had been bought.
Congratulations to Norman Smurthwaite and Paul Wildes and good luck to them in the coming months and years as they look to build the viable, successful business they are promising.
Having spent some time with Norman, it seems we may actually have owners who know a thing or two about customer service.
They've got a bargain and understand that the potential of Port Vale is massive – if they can a) increase the number of bums on seats and b) make Vale Park a thriving business venue when we are not kicking a ball about once a fortnight.
That Vale thumped sorry Bristol Rovers 4-0 just hours after the takeover had been confirmed really was the icing on the cake.
So where are we now, as a club, in the cold light of day?
We are out of administration and debt free. There are no loans involved in this buy-out.
The administrators will soon become liquidators of the old Valiant 2001 and some previous directors could well have to answer for their actions. W we have new owners who have pledged to take nothing personally from the club in terms of salaries or dividends.
We have a quality manager in Micky Adams and a good squad which is perfectly capable of achieving promotion and which will now be strengthened.
The fans have a voice in the supporters' club which the new owners have stressed they want to work with.
What's more, local lad Tom Pope is banging in goals for fun, while Roy Sproson watches over his beloved Vale Park.
Pride has been restored.