I would just like to hope all our fans and families are safe and well, as we hopefully begin to return to some semblance of normal life and we can welcome you back in full at the start of next season.
The season hasn’t been great and we have been so poor at times, it has been hard to watch or stomach, but we are where we are because of those performances. Over the next two games the players, the coaches and the club must find a way to find enough character and pride to ensure we get the point we need to retain our league status. If the players take any responsibility, now is the time to show it and I ask them to leave nothing in the locker as we finish the season, one that has been so difficult for all involved.
We also know that our visit to Bradford will evoke memories of a terrible disaster they had to endure and our thoughts go out to everyone that was lost and the families left behind to mourn.
In our last game at home we will honour the fans who have lost their lives whilst being supporters of our club, but we will also think about the other lives lost - not just locally, but UK-wide due to the Covid 19 pandemic. The club will endure, the town will endure and the country will endure - that is who we are, we must remember, we must care.
I will briefly talk about the leaked shareholders resolution, because I had planned a more concise and informative press release, but that was scuppered by a few negative and uninformed individuals who would rather print lies than pick up the phone to me.
The club is financially safe due to extra funds given to the club as sponsorship for the stadium naming rights, which over the next 10 years will be close to £4.2m. This covered our relegation and the lost revenue, due to the Covid situation and is not part of any loan to the club. The £11m loan was removed because we were obliged to charge interest at £360,000 per annum, by the Revenue, so by offsetting that we were able to save the club £360,000 per annum. The club will pay no rent until it can afford to pay a market rent. It is fully protected, in that it has security of tenure for over 100 years and cannot be moved, or developed unless a new stadium and training facilities are provided elsewhere and that is whilst I am here, or anyone else. It will not be borrowed against and will remain a community football club for all our and our offspring’s lifetimes.
We have had numerous forums and shareholder meetings where I emphasised my commitment to the football club and have proved that with over £24m of investment, which includes £8m of share purchases equating to 92% ownership. Although not quite achieving Championship status, we gave it a go as a little club without risk to the future of the Iron. In fact the future is looking good as we develop the site to provide a more modern looking stadium with better facilities and a quality football and leisure facility. This will include a fully developed training facility, which will incorporate all our teams in one place. Please don’t believe the doom mongers who just want to stain me and my family, or the individuals who have nothing good to say about our club. Look at our investment and commitment to the club, and our future hopes and dreams to leave a legacy and not a tattered and tired stadium and a club in huge debt, but one with supportive owners who put their money where their mouth is.
I can’t talk about all the commercial dialogue, as it would put us at a disadvantage, but I will print everything I can over the coming weeks and all of this is true and as a statement of fact, not what you have seen in the press.
My family and I wish you a safe exit from the restrictions and are honoured to be the owners and protectors of the Iron, both now and into the future.