Football dressing rooms are sacrosanct places. What goes on in there, stays in there.
But Chester FC should be willing to open the doors to theirs to all.
Because what visitors will see is the embodiment of what being a fan-owned football club is all about.
Back in the summer then first-team manager Jon McCarthy was keen to improve the home dressing room.
He turned to retired joiner John Needham, who is one of a number of volunteers that help keep the club running day to day.
To say the 71-year-old from Plas Newton rose to McCarthy’s challenge is an understatement.
Because the finished product would not look out of place in the Championship or even the Premier League.
It is that impressive.
But what makes it all the more impressive is the fact that John carried out the work completely free of charge – and solely for the benefit of his beloved Blues.
The lifelong supporter sourced the materials and, with the help of contacts in the trades, including the club’s former head of youth development Bernard Concannon, who runs Chester Polishers, rebuilt the dressing room from scratch.
It took 400 hours, from start to the finish, with the only cost to the club coming when employees and volunteers had to spend a short time outside after he accidentally set the fire alarm off!
Other than that, there were no hitches, and little wonder that Marcus Bignot, who replaced McCarthy in the Chester hotseat in September , says John has gone ‘above and beyond’.
“At the start of the season Macca (McCarthy) asked if I could improve the dressing room,” said John, who has been following the Blues for 62 years and volunteering with the club since its reformation in 2010.
“He wanted it to look more professional, and make it look better for when we have players coming down here who we want to sign on the dotted line.
“So I said, ‘leave it with me, Jon’, and I raided the internet to see what dressing rooms were like at other clubs. The ones in the first and second divisions were no better than what we had before so I had a look at Premier League and Championship clubs.
“After that I set to in the South Stand, ordered some plywood, and started making them.
“It all went very well, there were no mistakes along the way, and we’re all happy with them.”
That includes John’s wife Marion, who also volunteers at the club as well as being its company secretary.
But there was an incident during the process when she had to make a surprise visit to her husband.
“I worked all that time making the dressing room and not once did the fire alarm go off,” laughs John, who celebrates 50 years of marriage to Marion in 2018.
“I was on holiday while everything went away to be painted but when I came back I had to put the backs on them again. I was making the dust and I saw this little red light jumping back to and on, on the ceiling. I thought, ‘what on earth is that?’
“Well, my missus came across and said, ‘do you know everybody is standing outside in the car park because you’ve set the alarm off!’”
But, joking aside, no-one can have any complaints.
“I’ve always been brought up to do a job to the best of your ability,” continued John, who has also built the club a new trophy cabinet and new kitchen next to the boardroom.
“I wanted the dressing room to look right as much as anyone else at the club wanted it to look right. You have a built-in pride which you can’t get away from when you’re a joiner.
“You want your next job to be better than your last job.”
And his next job?
“Marcus said to me, ‘now you’ve finished the home one, when are you doing the away one?’” laughed John.
“I told him to get on his bike!
"But I did really enjoy doing it.”
And Blues boss Bignot, who captained QPR in the Championship during his playing days, is truly grateful.
Bignot said: “People who know me will know I’m obsessed. I’ve been known to put out the kit and set up the dressing room, because I take massive pride in the home dressing room.
“Fortunately I’ve come into a football club where you get a gentleman like John who has gone above and beyond pride.
“I’ve been in many dressing rooms up and down the country, and I’ve been fortunate to play most of my career in the Championship, and it is up there at Championship level in terms of design.
“It goes some way, I’m telling you. When you walk into that dressing room as a player... it just adds to it.
“I think we all know where we want to be one day but you have to set the standards and get the infrastructure right – and John has set the bar way and above.”