A small group of Bury fans are in the process of creating a new club.
This is despite the original Bury Football Club, founded in 1885, still existing.
The 134-year-old club is facing a winding-up petition in the High Court, launched by Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs (HMRC), due to unpaid debts. The case was adjourned on October 16 and is due to re-commence this Wednesday (October 30).
In a statement yesterday afternoon, supporters from the Bury Phoenix group said: “The latest adjournment from the High Court is merely postponing the inevitable and its supporter base will wait no longer.”
Supporters face an anxious wait as Bury saw an application to begin 2020/21 in League Two rejected in September. If the club is liquidated, then a phoenix club will start in the North West Counties League – the ninth tier of the English football pyramid.
Following a failed eleventh-hour takeover bid by sporting consultancy firm, C&N Sporting Risk, Bury was expelled from the Football League on August 27 as the club failed to provide the necessary assurances to the English Football League (EFL) that they could meet financial commitments.
The move to start again has on the whole been welcomed by supporters and some of its former stars.
Former goalkeeper, Cameron Belford responded to the news with a muscle emoji and a football.
— cameron belford (@cambelford) October 26, 2019
Speaking after a 6-6 draw in a legends match against Radcliffe last Sunday, former midfielder Neil Danns described Bury as a “town that really gets behind its football team.”
Supporter Chris Murray praised the wider impact of the football club on the community, as it provides the “small fanbase with something to talk about.”
Attacking owner Steve Dale, supporter Jamie Hoyle said: “His actions as chairman have destroyed the livelihoods and ripped the heart out of our community. A phoenix club is the only way we can guarantee football in Bury next season and I fully support their aims.”
Jon Tonge, who first watched Bury aged seven in 1970, also attacked the role of Mr Dale, describing him as “diabolical” and a “chancer.” He added that it was because of Dale that Bury FC had “no realistic prospect” of beginning next season in a higher division.
Amid speculation regarding the emergence of a phoenix club, Bury FC issued a statement on their website on Friday.
“The Club would like to make clear the following and quash any rumours. Bury Football Club is not dead as some are asserting and will again be playing football.
“Steps are being taken to address the recent wrongdoings to our Club, the truth will prevail. Our pitches at Gigg and Carrington are in first-class order ready for next season, work will start on our Stadium once the Day/Loan situation is resolved.
“The legal cases against people are ongoing but looking very positive, alas not as quickly as we would like.
“The winding-up order should never have been issued and would have been dismissed on the day but unfortunately, HMRC had not finalized processing the returns and an adjournment was granted to accommodate this, it will be dismissed this week coming.
“The press made the above sound like others were involved, it was a quick court hearing and lasted minutes no other party influenced the case or made a claim.
“Our Club has no affiliation with these alleged Phoenix/Start-ups.
“The Club can also confirm it has never been involved or been consulted in recent fundraising allegedly for our Club or indeed has it benefitted from any fundraising by Forever Bury or any other entity, we are unsure where these proceeds go but it isn’t to help Bury Football Club, so please be advised if that is what you thought.”
Image courtesy of Bury FC via Twitter, with thanks.