The clubs longest serving employee.
Les Hart was born in Ashton in Makerfield in 1917. Les started his footballing career at Earlstown White star but he was quickly scouted and a number of Clubs were after his signature including Liverpool but he signed on the dotted line for Bury F.C, taking over the spot from Irish International Bill Gorman at right back.
Les made his debut against Tottenham Hotspur on the 17th December 1936. Les became Team Captain for 12 seasons and in 1948/49 season he skippered a side that found themselves four points clear as leaders of Division 2. Les played against other footballing greats including Tom Finney, Sir Stanley Matthews,Bill Shankley, Bob Paisley, Frank Swift .
In 1953/54 season he hung up his boots but he had had the foresight to plan ahead and he gained his footballing coaches badges, and phisiopherapy diplomas at Lillishall. Les worked at Bury F.C. as first team trainer/coach, and became the clubs phisiopherapist .Leeds United offered him a position as Head Coach but he turned it down to stay at his beloved Bury.
In season 1969/70 he was asked to take up the position of manager and he steered the club to a record 8-0 win against Tranmere Rovers. In 1971 he reverted back to his job as phisiopherapist. Les retired on the 29th March 1980 after 44 years at one club, Les decided the time was right to look after his wife May,who had suffered from ill health for some time. Les was a gentleman of the game both on and off the pitch and the players loved him. It was sad that he did not receive a testimonial from the club or some other form of recognition, however the south stand has recently been re-named The Les Hart Stand as recognition of the life he spent working for the club.
The National Football Museum at Preston however have recognised his life at Bury, by staging an exhibition and displaying his ashes in their hall of fame, in recognition of his contribution to football and in particular to one club.Bury.
Les died in Bury on the 20th August 1996. Probably Bury’s most loyal servant ever.
Up The Shakers!!