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    Linnets Legends - Stan Storton

    In the series so far we have looked at two former Runcorn managers, John Williams and player manager, Mark Carter. The third in our look back at Linnets Legends is Stan Storton. One of our main criteria for our legends has been the bringing of success to the club and Stan certainly came into that category.

    The Stortons originated in Keighley West Yorkshire, near to where I have spent all of my working life. Stanís brother,Trevor, was until last season still managing in the Unibond League at Bradford PA, (although it was his successor who guided them through the play-offs into Conference North.) Stan started his playing career as an amateur with Huddersfield Town, where he won an England Youth cap. At 17 he signed as a professional for Bradford City, where he played for seven seasons prior to moving via Darlington and Hartlepool to Tranmere, where he played for four seasons. He then became player/coach and then manager at Ellesmere Port before joining the Linnets.

    Stan himself was a very successful manager, not just at Runcorn but at other top non-league clubs. He joined us in the latter part of 1972/73 and managed the club for six years until his departure in 1979. His time at the club was undoubtedly helped by his captain, Alan King, who we looked at in our last article. During Stanís reign the Linnets were one step from Wembley on three occasions in the FA Trophy. Each time we were the better team, but lost to Stafford twice and to Altrincham. It seemed that we would never make it until at last John Williams took us there in 1986.

    Under his guidance, the Linnets supreme triumph was winning the Northern Premier League in 1975/76 (what a year that was, as my daughter was also born in the February!), the Cheshire Senior Cup was won in 1973/74 and 1974/75 and the NPL Challenge Cup was added to the list of honours in 1974/75. Stan had brought new success to the club. It was the first league championship since the Cheshire League in 1962/63 and only our fourth in total up to that time (although we did, of course, go on to win the NPL again in 1980/81 followed the next season by our greatest ever triumph of winning the Alliance Premier League, later to become the Conference.) Many of the players from that era feature in Linnets Legends Ė Peter Duff, Alan King, Barry Whitbread, Barry Howard to name just some who helped Stan achieve the success he did.

    When he left us, he briefly joined Bangor City and then Northwich until he beacame a very successful manager with Telford during the 1980s, in the days when they seemed to be giant killers every year in the FA Cup. Players such as Dave Mather Ken McKenna and Kevin Charlton were his stars.

    So Stanís six year period of honours entitles him to be a Linnets Legend,


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