Captain Ben Mee has left the club, as well as James Tarkowski, who both helped the club win the Championship title in 2016, while Aaron Lennon, Phil Bardsley, Erik Pieters and Dale Stephens have also departed.
However, Cork has won promotion from this level with Southampton 10 years ago, playing in all 46 games as Nigel Adkins’ Saints finished runners-up behind Reading, while Jay Rodriguez was part of Owen Coyle’s play-off winning squad in 2009, Ashley Barnes was with the club in 2014 and 2016 as they twice won automatic promotion, and Matt Lowton, in his first season with the club in 2016, won the Championship title as Burnley ended the season 23 games undefeated under Sean Dyche.
Cork, 33 on Saturday, has agreed a new two-year contract with the club, and after the pain of relegation back in May, he is looking forward to a new era under new Clarets boss Vincent Kompany: "I'm really excited to go again, it was massively disappointing last year, we worked so hard the last few weeks of the season to try and stay up, but unfortunately it didn't happen.
"But it's a great opportunity to try and get promoted in a tough league.
"It's a new challenge, the Premier League has been tough, the last 10 years, you don't get anything for staying up every year, and hopefully we will be up at the other end of the table trying to win matches.
"The last time the club was in this league, they got promoted, and the last time I was in this league with Southampton, we got promoted as well.
"Hopefully there are a lot of experienced players who can help the young players that come in to know what it takes to go up.
"There will be good times and bad times but it's about trying to keep everyone level and hopefully that's what we'll do.”