WHAT a superb letter from Dr A Bell (Mail, February 26).
It encapsulated the feelings of so many people in the town who have grown up with Hartlepool United Football Club, through a little bit of thick and a big helping of thin, giving unwavering support in the hope that one day we may grace the higher echelons of the football league.
Who could forget, as Dr Bell states, the Brian Clough era or our very first promotion under Gus McLean.
A team which included the late Terry Bell, a truly gifted footballer and a fantastic header of a football.
We have seen some great players come through the ranks.
They have given the club great service before moving on to greater things, and providing the club with much-needed transfer money, including Keith Houchen, Don Hutchinson, the Linighan brothers and, for me, the most gifted player to ever wear the blue and white shirt – Mark Lawrence.
But for a badly-broken leg received during a kick-about with his mates, he would surely have played at the highest level.
Some great cup matches over the years.
The Gary Gibson era – with players of the calibre of Joe Allon, Paul Dalton, Rob McKinnon, and Brian Honour – briefly yielded some golden memories for us.
The IOR era coincided, without doubt, with the most successful, exciting period in club history.
Which begs the question why has it allowed our proud club to fall into its current perilous state?
Why was Colin Cooper allowed to bring in several players who were well past their sell-by date?
He should have gone after last season’s brush with relegation when we lost seven of the last nine games.
This man was responsible for showing the door to Richie Humphreys, Simon Walton and Andy Monkhouse, three players with whom we would not be in such a laughable league position.
Players with heart and no little skill.
Richie would have run through a brick wall for this football club.
Walton showed his worth when he ran the show in midfield for Stevenage a couple of weeks ago.
Monkhouse had probably his best season for us last year, the only one in the side with any heading ability and still showing an eye for goal.
Which is more than can be said for some of those currently in the side.
On the subject of heading ability, let me make mention of Nish, Bjornsson, Harewood, Morgan, players who, in my opinion, are all unable to head a ball – surely a pre-requisite for a centre forward?!
IOR pulled out of the proposed takeover, and rightly so.
However its statement on the issue bore no clues as to what will happen if no new suitors are found.
Relegation to the Conference League need not be the end of the world.
But no new investment certainly will be, with the only outcome being plunged into the abyss where the likes of Darlington and Stockport reside.
As Dr Bell succinctly states, the end of our Saturday afternoon hopes and dreams.
I, for one, could never watch football or support another team elsewhere.
This club is in my blood.
The demise of the club will at least allow Hartlepool Borough Council to sell off the ground for yet more housing, before wasting the money on what I consider to be another harebrained scheme.
Stuart Drummond had his detractors but I believe it was a big mistake voting the current lot in his place.