Hartlepool United legend Nicky Featherstone delighted with open top bus parade as he recalls 'unbelievable' scenes following promotion at Hull City

Hartlepool United’s open top bus parade has been four years in the making for midfielder Nicky Featherstone.

Friday, 25th June 2021, 5:42 pm
Updated Friday, 25th June 2021, 5:42 pm

He was part of the Pools side who were relegated from the Football League in 2017, now he’s played a crucial part in getting them back following Sunday’s play-off promotion final success against Torquay United at Ashton Gate. Leading to the first parade of this kind since the club’s 2007 League Two promotion season.

And just before joining his teammates on top of the open top bus and leaving a wet Victoria Park, Featherstone took a moment to speak to The Mail about what the occasion means to him.

“I'm looking forward to it, apart from the miserable weather to be fair, that could make things interesting” he admitted. “It's been a long time coming for me personally.

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"To get back to the Football League is where this club belongs so it's great to have the chance to celebrate that. Hopefully we can kick on from here and have more to celebrate next season.”

Featherstone is Hartlepool’s current longest serving player, approaching 300 appearances and has captained the side in Ryan Donaldson’s absence for the majority of the season.

But the 32-year-old has played down his club legend tag, despite the promotion.

“I'm not thinking about anything like that,” he smiled. “These lads have done brilliantly over the course of the season.

Hartlepool United bus parade.
Hartlepool United bus parade.

"If you'd said last year that we'd go up through the play-offs I'd say it's the best way to go up."

It’s Featherstone’s second play-off promotion of his career, having been part of the Hull City side that were promoted to the Premier League in 2008 as a fresh faced 19-year-old.

“I wasn't involved too much at Hull but I witnessed their play-off campaign first hand and played eight to 10 games and that was unbelievable,” he continued.

“But for us to do it at Hartlepool and for me to play a big part in it is massive for me and massive for the fans.

Hartlepool fans gathering in the town centre.

“The three games the fans got to see this season are probably the best three games that we've played to be fair and now to see them again around the town will be great.”

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Nicky Featherstone and Ryan Donaldson of Hartlepool United lift the Vanarama National League Trophy during the Vanarama National League Play-Off Final match between Hartlepool United and Torquay United at Ashton Gate on June 20, 2021 in Bristol, England. (Photo by Harry Trump/Getty Images)

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