BUTE'S football fans have been celebrating this week after Rothesay Brandane's Caledonian League promotion place was finally confirmed beyond all doubt - three weeks after the team completed their 2007-08 campaign.
A nail-biting week for the club began not on the football pitch but at a meeting of the Caledonian League's executive council in Glasgow on Thursday night, when Brandanes officials were summoned to defend themselves against a complaint from Cambusbarron Rovers, who lost out in that unforgettable promotion decider in Rothesay on April 26.
Cambusbarron had complained to the Caledonian League that the result should be reversed because of the alleged conduct of some of the Rothesay supporters during the match, but after hearing from both clubs, the committee was told by the match referee that any such conduct did not, in his opinion, have a material effect on the result of the game, and officials dismissed the Stirlingshire side's appeal.
With that hurdle cleared, the Brandanes' attention turned to the on-field fortunes of Stirling University, the only side with even a remote chance of overhauling the Rothesay men.
To do so, Stirling had to win all three of their remaining matches and overturn a goal difference of eleven in the process - and while there were some sweaty Rothesay palms after the first of those games saw the students defeat Rhu 5-0, the challengers' hopes evaporated when they lost out in a ten-goal thriller against newly-crowned Westerlands on Saturday, the Glasgow club triumphing 6-4 to finally end Stirling's faint hopes of going up.
Promotion and relegation has not yet been decided between the Caledonian Premier and First Divisions, so the Brandanes still face a wait to see who they'll be playing against next season, but some of the possible outfits coming to Rothesay in 2008-09 could be St Mungo's FP, Hamilton, Glasgow University, Giffnock, East Kilbride, Bearsden and last year's Division Two champions Newton Mearns Rovers.
At the end of their fourth season in the Caledonian League, the Rothesay Brandane committee, players and everyone associated with the club would like to thank their main sponsor, Maxwell Taylor of the Golfers Bar, and all other friends and sponsors for their continued and valued support.
The club's AGM will be held on June 19 - in the meantime, if you fancy taking a look back at a memorable season for the Brandanes, the club's website (www.webteams.co.uk/brandanes) features all the reports from this season's games, together with a wealth of other information about the team.