CHAIRMAN Paul Hilton is confident Radcliffe will kick on under Lee Fowler – whenever Boro get the chance to resume action.

After taking over in February 2020, the former Wrexham and Huddersfield man has endured a tough 13 months at the helm, seeing two campaigns cut short by the Covid-19 pandemic.

But Hilton has seen plenty of positive signs after an overhaul of the squad with planning in full swing for the 2021/22 season.

“I can’t imagine what it’s been like for Fowls to build a team during all of this and it’s a credit to his drive and determination that even in the short amount of game time we were allowed there were some real seeds of growth appearing in what was an almost entirely new squad,” Hilton said in an open letter the club’s supporters.

“I’ve no doubt that you will agree that we were becoming an extremely entertaining side and I’m confident that this time away has given Fowls the chance to evaluate and prepare the tweaks that will push us on again when we eventually get back to it.”

Hilton hinted that fans may not have to wait until the new season to see their side in action with the club eager to get going as soon as possible. “I am happy to say that despite the challenges there is much to look forward to,” the Boro chief added.

“Planning for 2021/22 season has begun, friendlies are being confirmed and there is the small chance that we may even get a game or two in before the pitch remediation work has to begin, so cross your fingers on that one – it would be great to see the place buzzing again before the summer.”

Despite income streams being hit hard, Hilton is planning to roll over season tickets to next season in a show of thanks to fans for their ongoing support during what has been an extremely tough time for all clubs and society as a whole.

“Earlier during the pandemic I explained that the hard work to make the club sustainable over the last few years had fortunately helped steer us away from the peril that some of our fellow clubs immediately faced during this period, and due to that I was not comfortable nor was it ethical asking for donations from our supporters during a time where our whole community was in need,” Hilton said in his address on the club website.

“My view has not changed – although I will admit it has been a struggle and huge thanks must be paid to the Premier League, the Football Foundation and Bury Council for the grants and support that we have received as we endure such an incredible loss of income – those grants have been pivotal to our survival.

“Planning also means making some decisions, and one significant decision to consider once we knew that the season would again be curtailed was how to resolve the 2020/21 season tickets.

“I have watched on with interest to see what other clubs’ (much-varied) approaches have been and worked on a few ideas myself, but ultimately only one solution actually feels right therefore I am delighted to confirm that all season tickets from 2020/21 will be rolled over to cover 2021/22 at no further cost.

“I would like to extend a personal thank you to our season ticket holders for committing to this club last season in such a period of uncertainty – and I hope that we can repay that faith on the field in 2021/22.”