Ray Moreland’s vision for Lilywhites

NEW Mossley Football Club chairman Ray Moreland says “sustainability” is key to the Seel Park club’s prosperity going forward.

Mossley AFC Ray Moreland

“In non-league you are always trying to get a pint out of a half pint glass,” explained the 66-year-old who is a senior partner in a Stoke-on-Trent criminal law firm.

Mr Moreland, who was raised in Uppermill, had been a Mossley director for the last five years and vice-chairman for the past 12 months.

He is looking forward to continuing the good work started by predecessor Gary Dean.

Mr Moreland, who lives in Market Drayton, Shropshire, said: “I am looking forward to help the football club continue to go forward. It is exciting and a new challenge

“Gary was a breath of fresh air bringing new ideas and working hard to make Mossley a community friendly club.

“His departure took us by surprise, but his business is flourishing, and he has other interests to pursue.”

Mr Moreland, who watched first football as a boy at Mossley, brings expertise in football administration to the table at Mossley.

He previously had three years as a director of Halifax Town but quit after his warnings about the way the club was being run were ignored.

“I could see what was coming and 18 months later that was proven when the club went out of business,” he said.

“That is why I won’t allow that to happen at Mossley. The aim has to be to run a sustainable club that is here in five, 25, 50 and 100 years.”

Mr Moreland was a decent footballer in his day, a full back who played for Halifax Town’s youth team, Cambridge University and Newmarket Town in Eastern Counties League.

He was also a class one referee and officiated in the Mid-Cheshire League.

Callum Irving, who was only elected to Mossley’s board of directors in July, has become the new vice-chairman.

The 38-year-old, a freelance football consultant, used to be employed by the Football Association as a senior regional manager looking after eight counties in the North East and Yorkshire.

Mr Irving, who lives in Top Mossley, is keen to use his extensive contacts within football to help the club become a 12-month a year business.

He has already had a meeting with the Football Foundation and the immediate aim is to secure funds to improve the changing facilities.

Mr Irving added long-term the dream would be to have a 3G surface which can accommodate all the team – juniors, academy, Under-21s, girls, women and seniors as well as being available for community use.

He said: “We need a vibrant club and one which people will come to, not just on game day.

“There is an under supply of 3G surfaces in the borough. It is incredibly early days but we are on the road. It is up to us to make a good case that we should have one.”

Mr Irving added there is a sizeable footprint at Mossley and potential to develop facilities.
Stephen Porter, 51, has been made a director at Seel Park.

The business development manager for a Blackburn based integral blinds firm, had previously served on the committee.

Mr Porter, who lives in Mossley, is the boardroom host on matchdays looking after sponsors and guests.

He said: “I love football, love my town and want to make a difference and help take Mossley to the next level.

“I want people to come to our matches rather than going to watch Manchester United and City.”

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