Soham Town Rangers super fan Mark doing his bit for the cause... behind the bar!

Soham Town Rangers New Pub Landlord Mark Bailey, with Saffron Baliey, Adam Bailey and Leah Badcock

Soham Town Rangers New Pub Landlord Mark Bailey, with Saffron Baliey, Adam Bailey and Leah Badcock - Credit: Archant

SUPER fan Mark Bailey is so dedicated to Soham Town Rangers FC that he left his job to take over the running of the club’s bar and social club.

Mark has been an ever-present fixture in the stands at Julius Martin Lane since the 93-94 season and has seen the Greens through the highs and lows of promotion wins and cup final defeats.

At the start of the 2012-13 season, he agreed to take over as club secretary, itself a demanding and time-consuming task, but when the club came looking for a new bar manager at the end of last season, he once again heeded the call, despite never having pulled a pint in his life.

Dad-of-two Mark has previously been a Sky digital installer, welder, and Plumbase employee, among others, but admitted that he never really enjoyed his work.

Now, with the new season just weeks away, Mark is hard at work pulling in new punters to the club and his charisma has seen membership of the social club rocket from 40 at the start of last season, to 222 and counting.

He has enrolled son Adam, 14, and daughter Saffron, 16, to help out with cleaning and trusty barmaid Leah Badcock has helped Mark hit the ground running.

“I think never having pulled a pint in my life has really helped,” he said. “I haven’t been trained to run a bar do it in a certain way. I’ve been able to bring a fresh approach to it and I think my inexperience has been a positive in this case.

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“I’ve really enjoyed it so far and I hope that I can keep at it for as long as I can. There is a really nice atmosphere around the place and I’ve had a lot of support.”

Mark, from Soham, has added some new ales to his selection, including the increasingly popular Doom Bar, and also has plenty of live music acts planned for months ahead.

And first team manager, Steve Fallon’s favourite tipple? “He prefers a soft drink,” added Mark.