The fact a year which brought just five wins was arguably better than the previous one says much about the depths from which Birmingham & Solihull hauled themselves in the last year.
If 2009 was their annus horribilis one couldn’t claim 2010 has exactly been an annus mirabilis, yet it has been an annus stabilis (though I suspect that’s not a word) and for many at Damson Park that is almost enough.
Under the off-field guidance, indeed generosity, of Chris Loughran, the club no longer needs to pick Peter’s pocket to pay Paul and while their £500,000 playing budget is the smallest in the division, it is not borrowed or advanced.
They have also rehoused themselves in a groundshare with Solihull Moors FC and from a spectating and entertainment point of view the move has been a success.
They now have a sound basis and decent facility from which to run their operation.
But on the pitch the story of the calendar year will be what Russell Earnshaw and his players tagged The Great Escape.
Personally it is not a concept I ever bought into because I found the whole packaging exercise a little distasteful.
While Earnshaw was rightly proud of the phoenix from the flames trick that kept them in the Championship, many in rugby found it difficult to dissociate the relegation dodge from the circumstances that landed them in the fire in the first place.
Make no mistake the inspirational form of Simon Hunt and Anthony Elliott in the play-offs could not have been more breathtaking but to many supporters a little more contrition might not have gone amiss.
However, there is no longer any need for sack cloths or ashes and Earnshaw et al should be applauded for bringing to the Championship some truly outstanding players.
If Semisi Taulava can recapture the rampaging form he demonstrated before his shoulder injury, he could be the find of the season in the entire division.
And when it comes to incisive rugby no-one in the bottom half of the table can match Bees when their tight five get over the ball and their back row interlink with the threequarters.
However, there remain very real defensive and tackling issues jeopardising that which was so hard won last spring and on current form a repeat of last season’s heroics would be a great escape in which the whole sport could share.
Bees’ Player Of 2010: Simon Hunt - Superb at the end of last season and nine tries already in this