Mansfield owners get award after promotion success

John and Carolyn Radford celebrating Mansfield Town's promotion
Carolyn Radford (right), who became Mansfield chief executive in 2011, celebrated promotion to League One with husband and club owner John on 16 April [Shutterstock]

Mansfield Town owners John and Carolyn Radford have received an award from the town's mayor for moving the club from a state of "crisis" to promotion to League One during their 14 years in charge.

Andy Abrahams praised the spouses' charity and community work and the wider impact of the Stags' success, describing it as "stimulating the local economy and giving the town national recognition".

Town were in the middle of five consecutive seasons outside of the EFL when John Radford bought the club for £1 in September 2010, restoring their ownership of the One Call Stadium in 2012.

"You have achieved this because of your passion that comes from being part of this community," Town supporter Abrahams told the pair before Mansfield's squad and staff took part in an open-top bus parade around the town on Sunday.

Thousands of fans streamed on to the pitch at the club's home to celebrate the end of their 11-season stay in League Two when Nigel Clough's side beat Accrington earlier this month.

Mansfield's attempts to win promotion included a play-off final defeat at Wembley in 2022, missing out on automatic promotion on the final day of 2019 and falling short of a play-off place by a solitary goal in 2023.

They began a seven-match spell at the top of the table in February this season, only to briefly drop into the play-off places again with a three-match winless run including two consecutive defeats.

The win over Stanley was one of four straight victories which helped Mansfield finish third with an eight-point cushion over fourth-placed MK Dons.

"Your heart gets broken but we want to go for it every year," Radford told BBC Sport after Mansfield went up.

"We are not a club looking backwards. We are always looking forward. We wanted to get promoted, wanted to get to League One and we have."

Mansfield's only previous season in the third tier since 1992-93 came in 2002-03, when they were relegated before losing the play-off final the following season.