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AT THE end of the match at Rainworth Miners’ Welfare on Saturday, I went into the hospitality suite with our club secretary, Dave Crampton, to pass on the detailed statistics from the game so that he could file his report to the East Midlands Counties League.

Three wonderful old ladies, who had earlier supplied us with our delightful tea and sandwiches at half-time – along with the iced buns that are the prerequisite at children’s parties or adult football occasions – were sitting happily with three large glasses of wine.

Their working day was over, as was their umpteenth season as volunteers at Kirklington Road, and they were happily grumbling together about the standard of refereeing that had seen their beloved Wrens slump to a 12-0 home defeat.

That sums up a proper football club. You can keep your Manchester Uniteds and your Chelseas. Those three grandmas from heaven sum up what football means to me.

Every club needs people like that. And Manchester United and Chelsea have got people like that behind the scenes, in fairness.

But now Newark Flowserve are taking a step closer to the big time, and the club need to be as strong off the field and as they clearly are on it.

It is all very well for the team to go banging in 12 goals and playing football of the gods, and the people of Newark will love them for that. But now we need the people of Newark to come along to our club and volunteer their services in order to be part of the glorious success story that is happening at Lowfields.

My working career as a sports journalist always prevented me from supporting or belonging to one football club. But during my 25 years as Sports Editor of the Newark Advertiser, I was frequently asked the same question: “Why haven’t Newark got a football team that puts the town’s name on the footballing map?”

Now we have. And it is the dawn of a great and golden future for football in the town. At last.

Now we need more of the good people of the town to come along and earn their glasses of wine at the end of the day.