Total nonsense to suggest that the NPL running a central division has any consequences at all for football in the north east. trouble is the NL hierarchy going back 30+ years has always considered itself superior and more valuable than any other league, its member clubs, the FA, the world in general. It isnt - it's purely a vehicle for managing a set of fixtures.
Precisely this. The haughty attitude of the league has always mystified me. Watching the FA put it in its place, as it has done over the past couple of seasons, is very satisfying.
Mike Amos, the previous league chairman, is mostly to blame IMO, the bad rep of the NL was mainly down to his attitude towards the FA. There was a period of TEN years when the Northern league failed to promote a single club, even in 2003-04 when mass promotions were needed in order to create what is now Step 2. And its obvious the FA have not forgotten that.
As for the "consequences", well the only one I can think of is that the best of the first division will be able to progress in the pyramid without being held back. In the next few years, I expect the likes of Bishop Auckland, Consett, Shildon and Hebburn Town to make the step up further populating the NPL with more Northern clubs. This in a way is going to go some way to repair the damage done in the previous three decades.
The list below says it all, only NINE clubs in 30 years promoted from the Northern to the NPL, Spennymmor United in 92-93 not included as they had switched to the Northern Counties East League
CLUBS PROMOTED FROM NORTHERN LEAGUE TO NPL SINCE 1988
1988-89: Bishop Auckland & Whitley Bay
1993-94: Blyth Spartans
1996-97: Whitby Town
------------ (Phase 1 - Creation of Conference North & South) ------------
2003-04: --- No promotees, mass promotions from NCE and NWC to make up shortfall
----------- (Phase 2 - Regionalisation of NPL Division 1) ------------
2006-07: Newcastle Blue Star
2007-08: Durham City
2013-14: Spennymoor Town
2016:17: South Shields
------------ (Phase 3 - New Step 3 and New Step 4 Leagues) ------------
2017-18: Marske United & Morpeth Town (Shildon missed out on PPG)
2018-19: Dunston UTS
------------ (Phase 4 - New NPL run Step 4 League) ------------
2019-20: --- Top three to be promoted ---