THE Wigan Athletic family is in mourning after the death of Jack Sudworth, 75.
Mr Sudworth enjoyed a long-standing association with Latics, going back to their non-league days.
After originally serving as a director, Mr Sudworth wrote the actual application that saw Latics granted Football League status in 1978, canvassing for votes among the existing members to get the club elected.
After Latics were finally given the nod, Mr Sudworth resigned his position as a director to become the club’s new commercial manager. One of his many achievements in that role was to help the club win the ‘Best Programme in the Football League’ award.
He was also involved in the setting-up of Junior Latics before instigating and mobilising the ‘Save Our Soccer’ campaign that kept football in Wigan when there was a real threat of it being relocated.
“In the early 1990s, when the club was struggling financially, he organised a public meeting at the Mill at the Pier to bring together like-minded supporters who would unite to ensure the survival of their football club,” his son, Chris, explained.
With the setting-up of the Wigan Athletic Shareholders and Supporters Association, Mr Sudworth helped show there was enough of an appetite for the game in Wigan to fight for, which paved the way for Dave Whelan to take the club on to the next level.
“Always a joy to speak to regarding anything Latics, he was knowledgeable about the game, a real raconteur and a true gentleman,” Chris added.