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Page last updated at 11:14 GMT, Wednesday, 1 September 2010 12:14 UK

Port Vale chief executive Bill Bratt steps down

Port Vale
Bratt headed the supporters group that took Vale out of administration in 2003

Port Vale chairman Bill Bratt has stepped down from his role as the club's chief executive.

Bratt will remain as chairman but will no longer be responsible for running the club on a day-to-day basis.

Vale have announced that they are actively seeking to replace Bratt and will advertise the position nationally.

"It was a very difficult decision because I love the club, but it's time for somebody else to step into the role," Bratt told BBC Radio Stoke.

"Over the last twelve months my health hasn't been too good, I haven't been able to do as much as I wanted to and I think it's the right time someone came in and took the worry off my shoulders," he continued.

I've been thinking about stepping down for the last three months - Mr Newton, nor anybody else, has got anything to do with this

Bill Bratt

"There will need to be somebody in the role who can take the club forward off the pitch and there will be a lot of criteria that we need to discuss with that person, but we're looking to the future now," Bratt added.

The Port Vale chairman moved to dismiss speculation that his resignation was linked to the takeover speculation that has engulfed the club for several months.

Last month the board rejected an offer of investment from New York based businessman Mike Newton which would have seen him become chairman.

"I've been thinking about it (stepping down) for the last three months," Bratt continued. "Mr Newton, nor anybody else, has got anything to do with this, it was going to happen whatever.

"At the moment it's a 60 hour a week job and I do other things at night but what we need now is a decent professional in the job," he added.

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