A GROUP in favour of football fans having a say in how their favourite club is run says it is behind Northwich Victoria Supporters Trust.

Supporters Direct spokesman Kevin Rye told the Guardian that backing from more than 100 Vics followers to pursue plans for a new club in the town, should the existing one cease to be, is a positive sign.

He said: “The decision made by supporters of Northwich Victoria is a powerful statement about what a football club really is.

"Is it a ground? Is it an owner? Or is it the fans, the community, the history? I think we all know the answer to that.”

Last Thursday, trust members voted for a rules change that gives the independent fans group the flexibility to form a new club should the need arise.

At an open meeting the same evening, supporters told the trust’s board to draw up a business plan as a contingency.

“Our fundamental aim is to ensure the continued existence of Northwich Victoria,” said trust board member James Wood.

“We are still prepared to help, but the club’s owner would need to show everybody that he has a credible plan for the future that includes supporters having a say in how the club is run.”

Another consequence of Thursday’s constitution change is that the trust can explore a possible community share issue as a means of raising money.

That could be to buy a stake in the existing club, or to help pay for a place to play for a new one.

Supporters-owned clubs FC United of Manchester, a rival of Northwich in the Evo-Stik Northern Premier League this term, and Wrexham have launched similar schemes recently.

“We hope that, whichever route the trust takes, the end destination is lasting ownership of Northwich Victoria by a community that has sustained it since 1874,” added Mr Rye.

“We will continue to work closely with the trust to help them to achieve that.”