David Haythornthwaite will not try to buy Blackpool again as he focuses on mission to get AFC Fydle into the Football League
David Haytornthwaite believes he could now purchase Blackpool FC for less than he previously bid, but the AFC Fylde owner is fully focused on taking his club into the Football League.
Haythornthwaite tried to buy the Seasiders and end the Oyston family’s ownership of the club in 2006.
But he withdrew his £6.75m bid and his friend Dai Davies, now the Coasters’ president, convinced him to turn his attentions to the club then known as Kirkham and Wesham.
And with Fylde battling for promotion from the National League for the second successive season, Haythornthwaite’s aim of reaching the Football League by 2022 looks to be on track.
He told The Gazette: “I made two attempts (to take control of Blackpool) and I could probably buy it today a lot cheaper than I tried to buy it for!
“But I’m fully committed to Fylde. I have a project I’ve started here and I am going to see it through. I will not be making any bid for Blackpool.”
However, he is delighted to see the Blackpool fans – alienated like he was by the Oyston family – returning to Bloomfield Road.
“I think it is fantastic what has happened,” Haythornthwaite (right) said. “All the people getting back the club they love is fantastic and I wish them every success.
“I was fortunate enough to go out and start my own team but most people can’t do that. Now they have their club back and I’m happy to see the joy and excitement on people’s faces. It will be a great day for all of those Blackpool fans.”
Fylde manager Dave Challinor has been in touch with his counterparts at Bloomfield Road and said: “We played a midweek bounce game against them last week. We know Terry (McPhillips), Brabs (assistant boss Gary Brabin) and Dave Timmins (goalkeeping coach) well. I’ve chatted to them and you only need to see the lift there has been around the club, with the numbers they took to Accrington and the ticket sales for Saturday.
“From a football perspective it is good that the supporters have got their club back. It was something you would not want to see happen to any football club, so it is really good news that they can rebuild. It is really good news for football and for the area.”
Asked whether the Blackpool revival could have an impact on attendances at Mill Farm, Challinor said: “I don’t think there will be a huge one. We recognise we are still building a fan-base, but hopefully we have done enough to encourage people that we are a team they want to watch and support.”