YORK City bosses are planning a second dig at Bootham Crescent to search for the ashes of fans interred there. And this time, the Lord Mayor of York Cllr Chris Cullwick - who used to be the club chaplain - might come along to give them a helping hand.

A dig last month led by archaeologist Jason Wood located the ashes of what are believed to be seven City fans interred in urns or boxes.

Relatives were among the volunteers searching for the remains - resulting in some moving moments as the ashes were discovered.

But City bosses accepted that many more urns remain to be found - and pledged at the time that there would be a second dig.

Since then, a 'couple more' families have come forward to say their loved ones' ashes were interred at the ground, said the club's stadium development director Ian McAndrew.

In consultation with families, he is now making arrangements for a second dig. "That will hopefully be in 2-3 weeks time," Mr McAndrew said. "We are working on the plans."

Cllr Cullwick was chaplain at York City for many years - and even interred some ashes at the ground himself. Most were around the goalmouth, or else near the stands where the fans would have stood, he said.

Interment stopped may years ago when it first became clear that York City was looking to move to a new stadium, Cllr Cullwick said. He was still chaplain then. "And a number of families contacted me at that point to say how concerned they were," he said.

Without written records, locating the ashes has relied upon photographs, and relatives' memories.

But Cllr Cullwick said he was impressed by the efforts the club was making to try to locate and identify the fans' ashes. "I have been really pleased by the lengths the club is going to, and by the way they have tried to be aware of the sensitivities of families," he said.

"They have taken the attitude that 'these fans are our family, our supporters'. That's good to see."

The Lord Mayor added that he would be 'very interested' in going along for the second dig, provided his other commitments allowed.

  • If you believe the ashes of one of your loved ones were buried at Bootham Crescent, you can contact York City at enquiries@yorkcityfootballclub.co.uk