Bury owner says club has been sold as deadline looms

Bury- Bury handed 11th-hour lifeline by son of Alastair Campbell as former analyst at West Ham United makes takeover bid

Bury- Bury handed 11th-hour lifeline by son of Alastair Campbell as former analyst at West Ham United makes takeover bid

Officially the English League One club have until midnight tonight to avoid being expelled from the English Football League, the first time in 27 years that this has happened to any club in the top four divisions of the domestic game.

Jill Neville, the former Bury football club secretary who resigned last week after 35 years' service, wrote to the owner Steve Dale when she left, calling on him to surrender ownership and control immediately so that the club can remain in the EFL and be saved.

Bury won promotion to the third tier last season but in July were given a 12-point deduction after entering into a company voluntary arrangement to try to clear some of their debts.

They have had their first six matches this season suspended and were kicked out of the League Cup.

People who know Jill Neville well say that her resignation after so many years illustrates in itself her despair at the unprecedented predicament the club is in.

The League One club are yet to play a single game all season after running into financial difficulty, and are now at an impasse with owner Steve Dale yet to sell the club.

There has been talk of a possible take over which has yet to come to fruition and a short stay of execution could be granted today in order for a deal to be completed. EFL boss Debbie Jevans responded by saying the league could give Bury "another 24 to 48 hours" but only if a credible solution emerges on Friday.

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If that was to happen League One would be reduced to 23 clubs with the number of relegation places reduced from four to three.

Ipswich are due to host Bury on November 2 and travel to Gigg Lane on March 28.

'The EFL Board continues to be frustrated at the lack of significant progress that has been made by Mr Dale in providing the information required.

"The EFL will continue to provide all support available and will keep working to find a resolution to the ongoing issues ahead of the Notice of Withdrawal deadline, which remains at 11.59 PM on Friday 23 August".

In a heartfelt letter to Dale, a copy of which the Guardian has seen, Neville said Dale had never answered her questions about his "agenda, plans and vision" for the club, and that she feared that if he would not step aside, Bury would fold.

"Bury would then be free to make an application to the Football Association to re-join league competition further down the English football pyramid from season 2020/21".

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