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Lifeline History

Lifleine

Notts County players showing support for Lifeline in 1987.

Image by: Nottingham Post

PUBLISHED

17:13 8th March 2012

by Dane Vincent

A look back at the story of Notts County Lifeline...

Monday 15 September 1986 was one of the most significant occasions in the long history of Notts County. 

This was the night that 1,500 supporters packed into the Astoria Ballroom with hundreds locked outside as they gathered to hear of the financial crisis that threatened the future of the club.

The club had been struggling financially for a long time and it was only the financial support of then chairman Jack Dunnett that enabled Notts County to continue. 

At the time of the meeting the club’s debt had reached £1.8million, which would not have been dissimilar to the figure involved when the club went into administration in 2003.

Just as there was tremendous enthusiasm shown by Notts County fans during the 2003 crisis, so it was then. 

The players were all on the platform, led by captain Steve Simms, pledging their support and listened to the speeches from amongst others Tommy Lawton, Don Masson and Jimmy Sirrel.

To rousing cheers, Sirrel said: "With the passion you are showing tonight there is no chance the club will die."

John Mounteney, the former Notts County vice-chairman said on the night: "We are staggered to find so many people turning out for Notts County. The club belongs to you. 

“We as directors are just stewards of an institution that has been running 120 years and it is our duty to preserve it for the generations of supporters to come."

And so Lifeline was launched with John Mounteney as chairman, backed by the tremendous enthusiasm from Neil Hook and Les Bradd, who together soon had a membership approaching the maximum 2,500.

Over 25 years later, Lifeline still boasts over 2,000 members, with supporters helping the scheme pump over £100,000 into the club each year, meaning that it has contributed over £2million since its formation in 1986.

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