Alex Hay has described the difficult decision he faced leaving Chester but said the offer to return to Tranmere was too good to turn down.
The chief scout was a popular figure at the Swansway Stadium during a three-year stint and was singled out for his incredible work ethic.
And the former Rovers striker was keen to thank the club and supporters for making him feel so welcome, and helping him develop.
“It does feel like a family and it was difficult for me to leave,” said the 32-year-old.
“Obviously having the opportunity to make the step up wasn’t a difficult decision but leaving everyone behind at Chester certainly was.
“The people couldn’t have been nicer to me and they appreciated all the work that I had done for very little to be honest.
“From day one I was made to feel so welcome at the club.
“Neil (Young) made me a part of the staff and saw the potential in what I could do.
“I worked very hard during my time there but I enjoyed every minute of it.
“The first two years were obviously fantastic and title-winning seasons, the third one was a little more difficult of course.
“It’s been huge for my development and I don’t think you ever stop learning.
“You learn at every level and every time you move up you’re learning something new.”
Hay will assume a new role at Prenton Park as chief scout after departing the Blues last week.
But he said Chester is a club that will always bare happy memories after contributing to two championship-winning campaigns.
“Chester has been a big part of my growth and I will always have fond memories,” he said.
“I’m excited to be stepping up to League Two now but everything I’ve learnt at Chester can be used at every level of football.
“I think just maintaining themselves in that division is what they’ll be looking to do now.
“We were a bit lucky with the reprieve but I think we deserve the luck for all the hard work that has gone in over the years.”