THE VICS COLUMN – Ian Egerton and Pete Tonge reflect on how far the club has come in two years

THE fans of Northwich Victoria Football Club are reflecting on the past few years as it was just over two years ago that we were put into administration, and looked to be going out of business.

This followed years of financial woes and mismanagement by previous owners, and the loyal fans decided it was time to take matters into their own hands.

The Club had plummeted from being a well-respected and the longest serving Conference National League Club side to settling in the North West Counties Premier Division, five leagues below in little over 10 years.

Led by the late Derek Nuttall who started the initial meetings, two Club stalwarts in Brian Turner and Dave Thomas pulled the small group of fans together and managed to raise enough money to buy the Club out of administration, paying off all of the previous regime’s debts as was required by the FA.

The Club was now fan-owned, and fan run and the hard work of running the new look Northwich Victoria Football Club had started.

The first season, 2017/18 was a tough challenge with crowds still low due to uncertainty, and local companies still aware of their past history and failed promises by previous owners.

The 2018/19 season started and crowds were on the rise. Results were also improving as Steve Wilkes had spent the summer working tirelessly to bring in a squad of players that would challenge and a FA Vase run started.

Starting with victories against highly fancied Maltby Main and then Cammell Laird and Prestwich Heys before beating Newcastle Benfield.

This was a special match and suddenly brought the fans, the team players and management together as one.

The belief was there and Northwich Victoria were back.

> Read the previous Northwich Victoria Column

The FA Vase run went on, with another memorable away day at Histon, followed by an amazing home quarter-final 3-1 victory against Sholing FC in front of a crowd of 719 fans. Northwich Victoria were just one step away from Wembley but the lads fell heart-breakingly short, losing on penalties.

The Wembley dream was over but Northwich Victoria had won the hearts and support of Northwich once more and more importantly during that run the crowds had grown to an average of 150 in the League and by the end of the season the Vics finished fourth and had won its first trophy as a fan run club as we lifted the Mid-Cheshire Senior Cup.

The new season is barely a month old, and crowds are still rising slowly with fans old and new coming to watch.

Why not come down and see for yourself and meet Tricky the cat and the Northwich Victoria family.

Saved by the fans...Run by the fans.