IT may seem like a minor change, but Bradford Park Avenue’s club historian Tim Clapham has explained the importance of the club reverting back to its old name, and how it will persuade disgruntled former fans to return to the club.

The Vanarama National League North side will have brackets in their title again and be officially known as Bradford (Park Avenue) AFC. The old coat of arms crest has been restored in the club badge to complete their historical look for the 2018/19 season.

The club were founded as Bradford Football Club in 1907, but as Clapham explained, the club became a limited liability in 1909 and changed their name to Bradford (Park Avenue) AFC.

This name remained until their liquidation in 1974, and returned when they were reformed as an amateur club in 1988.

A major change occurred a few seasons ago though, and Avenue became a community club. The brackets disappeared, along with some upset fans.

However, club owner Gareth Roberts is taking back control of the club, which had become community-owned in 2015.

Clapham said: “Many fans decided that they wouldn’t come and watch the team anymore when it became a community club. They said it wasn’t what they’d been brought up with.

“The concept works for some clubs, like FC United of Manchester, because they have a big fan base. We don’t have that here, so the idea was never really going to work.

“There was no need for the brackets to disappear when the club changed the way it was run either. It was a bizarre decision and upset a lot of people. Now it’s changed back, many have said they want to return again next season.”

Clapham believes the brackets are an important and unique part of the club’s history, and it seems the Football Association agree.

The historian explained: “Funnily enough, in every FA Cup or FA Trophy draw since we dropped the brackets, the FA have still had us listed with them in our title!”

History and tradition have been restored at Horsfall Stadium, and Bradford (Park Avenue) AFC are officially back.