Burnley town leaders excited about what the future holds as 'phenomenal' football club strikes Premier League gold again
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Burnley Council chief executive Mick Cartledge will retire this summer following 21 years working with the council in various capacities.
While this is the fourth Clarets promotion he has had the pleasure of witnessing, he feels there’s something a little bit different this time around.
“This season there has been even more of a buzz around the town. The way the players have played, the manager, just everything – it’s been so positive.
"For me there's a real feeling, yes, we’ve been promoted, but it’s not about going up and trying to survive; it’s a completely different feeling.
"And the international interest as well; the way Burnley can become even more global as a brand – it’s just a massive opportunity going forward.
“People always think Burnley is a bigger town than what it is because of the exposure we have had so far – but this really will be global, and we can all capitalise on it. It really is a massive opportunity”
Lukman Patel, who will take over from Mick following his departure, said seeing the football club and town continue to go from strength to strength in such a diverse and unifying manner made him incredibly proud.
"It’s a fantastic boost for the town. It lifts everybody. The town has gone from strength to strength in recent times.
"I want Burnley to be a place that other places aspire to be and that our residents are proud of. And that’s something I want to see going forward. And today [at the parade] is the beginning of that. We have a Premier League club and we are a Premier League town.
"The football club has a massive part to play [in bringing people together]. When I came to Burnley in 2015, never in a million years did I think we would be chanting the name of a Muslim footballer, Anass Zaroury, and to see that as a Muslim myself has been breathtaking. The manager, and the owners, have done such a fantastic job to create such a diverse team, and that is something that brings the whole town closer together. Diversity is a strength, not a weakness, and it is so incredible to see Burnley leading the way. It makes me very proud.”
Burnley brand manager Rachel Bayley added: “This is absolutely amazing for Burnley. We’ve had a killer few months in Burnley, and we just know it’s going to keep on getting better. We’ve had film crews filming us, we’ve now got the Americans filming us; and it’s just pretty mind-boggling that Burnley is going to be on the map everywhere globally – as it should be.
“We’re done with being humble, we want to shout about our successes, and the parade was a great way to do that.
"It’s crazy the amount of development going on, whether it’s Newtown Mill, Pioneer Place, the college; it feels like there is something announced every week, and it’s just fantastic for the town.
"I think everybody needs to embrace the fact we’re moving onwards and upwards and forwards.”