Former North Melbourne skipper Andrew Swallow has opened up about the club’s near-move to the Gold Coast.
Before the AFL’s 17th club became the Suns, North Melbourne was considered as a side that could be relocated to the Gold Coast.
Swallow says he would’ve “definitely” welcomed the change had it happened, but understands why the club chose against it.
“We obviously came up and played games there for a few years and we really loved it,” Swallow told SEN’s This is Your Sporting Life.
“I remember talking to a lot players at that stage and everyone who was in their first or second year was really keen to go up to the Gold Coast with that warm weather.
“I didn’t really have any attachment to Melbourne at that stage so I would’ve been very happy to move, but the guys who’ve been around for a long time obviously have family and friends and didn’t want to move.”
Swallow says former club President James Brayshaw was a big factor in the move not happening.
“It probably would’ve happened, but James Brayshaw and the guys he put together really took a stand,” Swallow said.
“Otherwise we would’ve been up there.”
The West Australian local believes Brayshaw did an amazing job turning the club around.
“I think the work that James and the guys that he put around the club at that stage did have gotten the club to where it is at this stage,” Swallow said.
“At the start of my career we had horrendous facilities, old portables that I think burnt down at one stage and you had homeless people sleeping in the carpark so it was pretty tough, but you sort of just didn’t know any different.”
Swallow is currently playing for the Aspley Hornets in the NEAFL alongside fellow ex-AFL players Ben Warren and Jake Spencer.
Originally published on SEN.com.au