THE 1874 COLUMN - a different perspective, by Matt Waters

AT 1874 we have many hard-working volunteers who dedicate so much of their time on a match day and during the week to help make our football club something to be extremely proud of.

As we reach nearly our seventh birthday, for everyone at 1874 and also in our wider football community, it is quite remarkable to see the progress we have made on and off the pitch in such a short amount of time.

This is down to a number of reasons.

The playing staff make a huge contribution to the club as it’s their success and investment into 1874 that makes us the club we are.

However, I’m sure everyone at 1874 will agree with me that it’s the volunteers that really makes us a community club.

Earlier in the year I wrote a piece on our football secretary Vicki England on all the hard work she puts into the club every day, however another volunteer that stands out to me is Toddy Barlow.

Whether it’s organising social events such as the bowls night or selling 50-50 and golden goal tickets, you’d simply never have guessed he’d supported another club for 60 years.

It’s this dedication and passion that makes 1874 a great football family.

When I spoke to Toddy on Saturday, he said: “It’s nothing short of a miracle to see how far we’ve come.

“Our fans are always there when we are raising money for charity. The work we do in the town with local charities is excellent.

“They always get behind any social events we organise and that’s what makes us a great club.”

For some, making the decision to support a new team after 60 years of support of another team may have been a difficult one, but for Toddy, that wasn’t the case.

“It was an easy decision for me to make,” he said.

“The support we’ve gained from all over the football community has been phenomenal.

“On match day the support we have is excellent and has only got better since we’ve moved to Northwich.”

In our short history, we’ve got lots to be proud of; the 2017/18 FA Vase run, winning the Macron Cup last season and our new away kit which is ranked 62nd in the world, but for Toddy he will never forget how it all started.

He said: “My highlight of 1874 so far is our first ever game versus Oldham Borough.

“We might not have won that day, but it’s the first time competitively we’d come together and looking how far we’ve come since is something to be extremely proud of.

“I want 1874 to be a club that is successful and stable in the future long after me, and I believe we’ve got something here that will be.”