LIFELONG Burnley fan Terry Crabb longs to celebrate his new role as director by watching the Clarets play top flight football again.
The 65-year-old first fell in love with his boyhood team in the late 1950s and revelled in the championship winning side of 1960.
Born in Burnley, Crabb grew up in the Harle Syke area of town, going to Heasandford Junior School, before leaving the area with his family at the age of 11. But he returned to the north west in the early 1970s, to see the Clarets go back to the big time again.
Now, with Burnley in the hunt for promotion to the Premier League, Crabb hopes he can once more prove to be a lucky charm, after applying to become the sixth member of the club’s new-look board. The appointment is awaiting Football League ratification.
Crabb admitted that joining a group of fellow Clarets was a big factor in his decision to make the leap from bond holder to director.
“That’s probably the forward most important thing for me to join the board,” he said. “It’s run properly by people who are either born in Burnley or people who are local to it now.”
Of his time on the terraces, Crabb said: “It was a privilege to see Burnley in the golden days of Adam Blacklaw, Alex Elder, Jimmy McIlroy, Ray Pointer and all the players in that team.
“We moved away when I was 11, steadily south, because of my father’s job. But we came back as often as possible to see my grandparents, so I would go to games then. In the early 70s and through the 70s I came back to live and work in Lancashire.
“But I moved away again in the 80s, and that’s when I ended up in Dorset.”
Crabb established Dorset Cereals in 1989 and sold the company in 2005.
During that time he met Prince Charles on a number of royal visits, and at Buckingham Palace after Dorset Cereals twice won the Queen’s Award for Export Achievement, although it did not emerge until later that His Royal Highness was a fellow Claret.
“Had I known there was going to be a connection in the future I might have mentioned something,” smiled Crabb.
Crabb is looking forward to a hands-on role at Turf Moor, although he admits he does not yet know exactly what it will entail.
“It’s too early to say,” he said.
“Hopefully I will be at the board meeting in a couple of weeks’ time and be able to have those discussions then.”