TIM Harris is hopeful Newport fans won’t hold it against him after he yesterday ended a thirty year love affair with the club, writes Michael Pearlman.

The former County player, manager, caretaker boss, director of football and general manager is leaving Rodney Parade to take over as manager of hometown club Gloucester.

Harris admits that the timing of the move is less than ideal, going as far as to call it a “nightmare,” and also admitted he wouldn’t have even considered leaving if it wasn’t for the fact Gloucester are in a “catastrophic,” state.

And the former Merthyr manager also confirmed he feels the Exiles could no longer afford to keep him on board in a part time capacity.

“As I explained, I think I could only have given more to Newport if I’d have given up my day job and gone full time, which wasn’t an option,” he said.

“The timing is certainly not good, it is a bit of a nightmare really, but unfortunately, you can’t always do things exactly when you’d want.

“Ideally this would be a move made at the end of the season, but I didn’t have that luxury.

“But whether you leave by choice or are pushed, there is never a good time to leave a football club, especially not one so important to you as Newport is to me.”

Harris couldn’t help but get misty-eyed over the memories created by last season’s promotion to the Football League.

“That day at Wembley will live with me forever; I remember sharing more than a few tears after the game with Flynny (Mike Flynn) because we both knew exactly what it meant for the club.

“It was a reward to all those passionate supporters, so many people involved with the club and especially the Ray Taylors of this world, amazing supporters of the club no longer with us.

“Everyone played their part and to complete the dream we had when I returned to this club, to do it, it would be hard to ever top that as a special, special occasion.”

Harris is certain he is leaving to go somewhere where he’s needed more.

Newport County are having a great season, irrespective of the disappointing last two results,” he said.

“It’s a catastrophic time for Gloucester and they need my help and it’s a great challenge for me.

“But in terms of what more I can do for Newport, I think in terms of the hours, I’d have to give up the business and that just isn’t an option.

“The future at County is bright under Justin Edinburgh and I will greatly miss being involved.

“Words can’t express how I feel about the club. Maybe in a few days I’ll find the right words, but it’s too hard right now. Enjoyable wouldn’t do justice to my time at the club.

“It’s been tough and I’ve loved every minute of it.”