WHEN Edin Rahic ruled City, history was irrelevant in his eyes.

Pictures of past glories were removed – one of Stuart McCall that had dominated the Valley Parade reception ended up stuffed in a cupboard.

Anything that had happened before his time was a distraction for the former chairman; some clutter getting in the way rather than inspirational imagery for those around him.

The story goes that when Ryan Sparks first arrived as the media manager three years ago, Rahic told him to forget what had gone on before.

“There is no history in Bradford City Football Club,” he had apparently said, “the history starts now.”

Thankfully, that is an attitude that was left in the past once Rahic walked away. The only history City are keen to wipe out now is the decline of the past few years.

The present club want to give the heroes that have gone before a proper respect within the stadium.

As Derek Adams is handed the task of shaping the major rebuild on the pitch, work is already well underway off it.

Images recalling iconic moments like promotion, Wembley and Wetherall are back in pride of place.

And the suites dedicated to McCall and John Hendrie, that were looking so tired and neglected, have been given some much-needed TLC.

Chief executive Sparks said: “Obviously, the most crucial part of the club is what happens on the pitch but it doesn’t hurt to look after what you’ve got.

“When I talk about creating a culture, it’s almost for staff as well. I’ve notice there’s an extra spring in the step when people walk in every morning now and a level of pride that potentially wasn’t there before.

“People run harder and go further for you then. They can see it’s not just empty words in newspaper articles.

“They can start to see changes that are positive and not just for changes sake.”

The McCall and Hendrie suites had been barely touched since they were unveiled 16 years ago.

To Sparks they looked soulless, “given up on” – which was why revamping both was such a priority of the stadium’s inner restoration and refurb.

The fact that City have been so willing to improve the room created as a tribute to McCall’s achievements shows there is no lingering bad feeling from his sacking in December.

There is still so much to do. The boardroom and JCT 600 suites on the top floor of the main stand are next on the agenda and City hope to have another block of new seating completed before next season kicks off.

Bradford Telegraph and Argus: A mural of David Wetherall's celebration after his goal against LiverpoolA mural of David Wetherall's celebration after his goal against Liverpool

“I’ve had a few questions about why we didn’t do other areas first like the Bantams bar,” added Sparks. “We will get to there.

“But these are our main corporate seats and we were starting to lose interest and bookings. We were suffering commercially in those areas because the facilities weren’t up to scratch.

“It isn’t just the pretty pictures on the walls but the heating, the air conditioning – there are deeper problems.

“There is huge scaffolding at the minute on the back of the main stand. We’re suffering with water coming through the roof and it’s potentially damaging the facilities.

“It’s something that we wanted to rip the plaster off and deal with. But what it has done is provide a blueprint for the rest of the stadium and how we can approach redecoration everywhere.

“We will move round the ground. These things are really important and go a long way with people.

“I know how it used to be as a supporter going as a young lad to watch my club and seeing development and change. It almost inspired me and we’re trying to transfer that.”

Reminders of what City can achieve – Premier League, League Cup final, FA Cup giant-killings – help with creating that sense of self-identity and reminding the younger element that life down in League Two will not last forever.

Sparks said: “When I came here, everyone talked to me about the Chelsea game and Arsenal and David Wetherall scoring against Liverpool.

“But if you didn’t know, you wouldn’t know what we were talking about.

“We want to convince the next generation of Bradford City fans, aged six, seven or eight, to watch us for the next 70 or 80 years.

“That’s why we wanted to get the imagery up so they can see what it means and what this club is capable of.

“It’s a reminder that this club have had success and we’re not just taking part. It’s important that we show them that.

“It instils a little bit of pride into what we are trying to do now.

“It can be quite exhausting. It’s very long for the people here who put in the hours.

“But it’s my belief – and Derek shares it from a football perspective – that the grit and graft you put in now, you’ll reap the rewards in the end.

“We’re hoping that at the end of next season we can sit back and say that we’ve made some really big strides on and off the field. You get what you deserve.”