Football team dubbed one of Britain's worst finally ends 26 GAME losing streak, but can they stay up?
Now that they have their first point of the season, New Mills are going to try and do the miraculous and escape relegation.
The Millers snapped a 26-game losing streak when they drew 2-2 at Witton Albion last week.
That disastrous run, which unsurprisingly puts them bottom of the Evo-Stik Division One North table, brought national media attention and the unwanted tag of the ‘worst team in Britain.’
But club secretary Sue Hyde says the reaction to their first point has lifted everyone at the club.
“It’s been fantastic to be honest,” she said.
“The support we’ve had from other clubs, the league, we’ve had media interest and we need to build on it now.
“Twitter went mad when we drew, it’s nice to know people are watching for our results, and it was a lovely atmosphere at Witton, the lads were applauded off the pitch.”
New Mills haven’t played since last Tuesday’s outing, with two games postponed due to the weather, and are due to travel to midtable Clitheroe on Saturday.
At least one person believes New Mills can escape the drop, despite sitting 13 points behind their closest rivals Harrogate Railway Athletic.
Hyde said: “Garry (Brown, manager) believes we can stay up – they’ve been working so hard with the team and they’re upbeat.
“The lads are all positive and we really are optimistic, they’ve actually been playing some nice football.
“It’s still mathematically possible, we have to play against a few of the bottom four or five a couple of times, so it’s there for us to take.
“Whether or not we can stay up I really don’t now, we’ll take it a game at a time.”
Supporter of 10 years and former treasurer Patrick Kenyon might not share the manager’s believe that relegation is avoidable, but he says the draw last week has raised spirits around the club.
“It’s created a bit of a buzz really,” he said.
“We came very close in November when we were 1-0 up in the last minute against Scarborough and managed to lose.
“The manager has never given up, he’s a positive guy.
“There are people saying we could stay up – the manager won’t give up which is right, but to me that’s not realistic.”
Kenyon was bemused by the club’s ascent to the national sporting consciousness, and felt other clubs with similar records got off lightly.
“They do say there’s no such thing as bad publicity,” he said.
“I think the one that was quite pleasing was the Telegraph article, it was quite positive, praising the people involved – that was nice to see.
“They seem to pick one team every year, and this year it was New Mills.
“There are teams with records as dreadful as ours this season.
“It’s created some exposure but ultimately you don’t want to be regarded as the worst team in Britain, which is a little bit unfair.
“Bashley in the South have lost all of their league games this season, but won in a cup, so maybe we’ve deflected the attention from them.”
Kenyon, who began supporting the club a decade ago having moved up from London, is a big believer in the importance of clubs like New Mills, even if they struggle.
“They’re at the heart of the community, you can probably say that about most clubs at this level – it’s about competiting at your level and providing facilities for local people.”