Port Vale: Ticket strife for Vale 'lifers'
SUPPORTERS who bought tickets to watch their beloved Port Vale for life have been warned they could lose their money.
At least 15 fans took up Vale's offer to buy lifetime tickets in 2005. Depending on their age, they paid between £1,500 and £8,000 to secure a seat at Vale Park for the rest of their days.
Club administrator Gerald Krasner says preferred bidder Keith Ryder will be under no legal obligation to honour the tickets if he buys the club.
However, Krasner says he will raise the issue with Ryder to see whether a compromise can be found.
He explained: "In law these supporters don't have much of a leg to stand on, but on our list of things to discuss with the new owners will be how he wants to deal with this issue. It will come down to what it would cost for these tickets and also what is right and proper."
Geoff Howell, aged 69, and wife Sheila were the first fans to buy the lifetime tickets.
They also invested £20,000 in club shares which they have already lost because the club is in administration.
However, in the case of the tickets, Howell believes life should mean just that.
"We paid £3,000 between us for the tickets," he added.
"It gave us our seats, but we also did it because we wanted to help the club.
"The price was on a sliding scale, depending on your age. So, had I kicked the bucket early on, I would have lost out."
The retired chemist, who is from Stafford, hasn't missed a Vale home game for 58 years, while he and Sheila have also worked as volunteers for the club.
Howell hopes Vale's potential new owner will see a moral case for honouring the tickets.
He added: "Fans who bought these tickets to get behind the Vale shouldn't be punished for supporting their club."
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