BARROW AFC chairman Paul Hornby says he wants to rebuild trust with supporters after 'mistakes' in appointing the club's two previous managers.

Mark Cooper has been confirmed as the Bluebirds' new boss on a three-year deal.

The former Forest Green boss arrives as successor to Rob Kelly, who took on the baton mid-season after a torrid start to the League Two campaign under David Dunn and Michael Jolley.

"I think it’s huge," he said.

"There’s loads of upsides on this appointment and it shows how far the club’s come that someone like Mark Cooper would come here.

" It’s crucial for us as owners.

"We inherited Ian Evatt, and made two mistakes with the next two appointments.

"It’s important we show the fanbase we’ve learned from our mistakes.

"We’re very self-critical, we know what’s happened in the past, we knew recruitment had gone wrong and it’s about building a bit of trust that we do know what we’re doing, and we want the best for the club.

"From a board point of view it’s got to work, but also for a statement of intent - bringing Mark Cooper to Barrow shows the fans where we want this club to be."

Hornby reiterated his gratitude to Kelly and said he would 'remain a good friend of mine'.

"I only spoke to him the other day and he said, ‘Phone me any time, I’ll always be a sounding board’," said Hornby.

"'He said, ‘I can’t stay as a No2 because I’d be a ghost’.

"He could have stayed, picked up the money until it was awkward and we had to do something.

"He’s experienced in football to know we had to give Mark the best possible chance.

"He was gracious enough to say that.

"But what a guy – honest, genuine, don’t find it in football often.

"If it wasn’t for him we wouldn’t be in the Football League now. The whole town owes him a debt of gratitude."

Last month the club said new contracts had been offered to Brad Barry, Joel Dixon, Kgosi Ntlhe and Jason Taylor

Hornby said there had been no progress on those yet.

"That’s developing all the time," he said.

"I’m speaking to their agents, some are trying to play the long game, but we can’t wait forever – you either want to be at Barrow or you don’t, and buy into the programme. If not, thank you and we’ll see you again."