The future of Bath City

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The future of Bath City

Post by Eddie Hitler on Fri Oct 10, 2014 12:26 pm

I've looked on the Supporter's Society page of the forum and can find nothing but sweepstake draw results so wanted to ask the question - what happened to all the talk about relocating/staying/community ownership etc. etc.?
We all got our dander's up about this last year, gave the Chairperson a good old slagging-off about it, paid consultants for a report, had meetings, embraced the Supporters Society plan for community ownership etc. etc. and then absolutely nothing.
Has this been forgotten about since Steve Bradley left us for the Lib Dems?
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Re: The future of Bath City

Post by 2weirdtown on Fri Oct 10, 2014 1:03 pm

Good question. I originally joined the Society as it seemed to be a way of increasing supporters input via building up shareholding. That stopped about 2 years ago when the club would not make any more shares available - Manda? What's the situation there now I wonder.
Society focus now seems to be on the (admirable) Foundation. In fact a mate of mine said Bath City were mentioned the other day on some TV programme in relation to a piece about promoting sustainable football. He did'nt catch what it was exactly but I would'nt be surprised if this was Foundation related.
As to the ground, I would imagine that with Manda gone and that 'Twerton lad made good in construction' back on board that there might be some plans at least at discussion stage?
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Re: The future of Bath City

Post by BenE on Fri Oct 10, 2014 2:23 pm

While I wouldn't describe it as falling at the first hurdle, the whole concept of community ownership relies upon winning over the current board about it. Unfortunately there was very little support for it there. If they are not prepared to sell their shares then it cannot proceed.

As for the stadium - the report funded by the society showed that there was hardly any merit in moving the stadium elsewhere. I think the view now is that we might as well make best use of what we have got.
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Re: The future of Bath City

Post by comrade powell on Fri Oct 10, 2014 5:01 pm

Very good answers, Weirdtown and Benny. While the events of 12 months ago took place before I returned to the committee, the situation re community ownership remains the same. The majority of major shareholders are against the concept, so it is very difficult for the Society to pursue this goal. But as the club's 3 Year Plan comes to its conclusion in a few months time, the goalposts may change again...
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Re: The future of Bath City

Post by Dusty Lynfield on Fri Oct 10, 2014 5:04 pm

From reading this there is no point in joining the Supporters Society....I was planning on doing this (setting up £10 a month dd, etc). This is still being advertised on this forum, so not sure if this is now relevant. Does the dd now just feed into the Foundation?
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Re: The future of Bath City

Post by comrade powell on Fri Oct 10, 2014 5:13 pm

No, the Foundation is not funded by the Society. I can assure you that what you have read advertised elsewhere on the forum is still relevant and I hope you will go ahead and join!
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Re: The future of Bath City

Post by Timbo_b-o-a on Fri Oct 10, 2014 6:15 pm

comrade powell wrote:No, the Foundation is not funded by the Society. I can assure you that what you have read advertised elsewhere on the forum is still relevant and I hope you will go ahead and join!

Oh, I joined also at the time of the community ownership idea and have carried on thinking my monthly contribution went to the Foundation which I was fine with.. If it isn't going on that may I enquire as to what all the subscriptions do go on? Or do they go in a pot waiting any new shares to become available?
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Re: The future of Bath City

Post by CityHatcham on Fri Oct 10, 2014 6:35 pm

I'm sure he'll be on to defend himself soon, but it's rather unfair to say Steve left us for the Lib Dems, he had been a LibDem councillor for a while. Equally the 'no' from the board was pretty firm - I think Steve took it as far as he reasonably could, it's not like he just abandoned the project halfway through to focus on something else.

I say this as someone who hopes to see the LDs wiped out at the next election...

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Re: The future of Bath City

Post by comrade powell on Fri Oct 10, 2014 7:00 pm

Timbo_b-o-a wrote:
comrade powell wrote:No, the Foundation is not funded by the Society. I can assure you that what you have read advertised elsewhere on the forum is still relevant and I hope you will go ahead and join!

Oh, I joined also at the time of the community ownership idea and have carried on thinking my monthly contribution went to the Foundation which I was fine with.. If it isn't going on that may I enquire as to what all the subscriptions do go on? Or do they go in a pot waiting any new shares to become available?

I don't think it would be appropriate for me to list the society's expenditure on a public forum - this will be available to all Society members at the next AGM. Of course, the purchasing of shares in the club is central to the Society's existence. Why they are no longer available is a moot point...
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Re: The future of Bath City

Post by SteveBradley on Sat Oct 11, 2014 1:12 am

Eddie Hitler wrote:I've looked on the Supporter's Society page of the forum and can find nothing but sweepstake draw results so wanted to ask the question - what happened to all the talk about relocating/staying/community ownership etc. etc.?
We all got our dander's up about this last year, gave the Chairperson a good old slagging-off about it, paid consultants for a report, had meetings, embraced the Supporters Society plan for community ownership etc. etc. and then absolutely nothing.
Has this been forgotten about since Steve Bradley left us for the Lib Dems?

I haven't gone anywhere Eddie ! Very Happy I'm still on the Supporters' Trust committee, and still a regular on the TP terraces (I'll be there again for Shortwood later today). I just didn't have the time to remain as Chair due to other commitments at the time (non Lib Dem).

The ink was barely dry on the proposal the Society presented re a commuinity club last year before 3/4 key shareholders (mostly Board members) released a statement to say they didn't support the idea. Community ownership can't progress without the support of the club and shareholders, so it was smothered at birth.

The idea is still there should the club ever decide that a different way of doing things and appealing to the people of Bath is worth trying.

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Re: The future of Bath City

Post by SteveBradley on Sat Oct 11, 2014 1:17 am

2weirdtown wrote: In fact a mate of mine said Bath City were mentioned the other day on some TV programme in relation to a piece about promoting sustainable football. He did'nt catch what it was exactly but I would'nt be surprised if this was Foundation related.

That was an interview with myself by Andrew Neil on the Daily Politics show on Monday Very Happy The interview was about a set of Lib Dem policy proposals to reform football - e.g. calling for a 5% redistribution of the new £5bn TV rights deal to fund grassroots development in the game ; protecting the heritage of clubs from what's happened at Cardiff and Hull ; calling for a percentage of all tickets to be available at affordable prices etc etc.

Andrew Neil started the piece by sneering at Bath City for not being a Premier League club Rolling Eyes

The media have tried since to undermine the ideas by saying it was about stopping football clubs winning or seeking to bring in a 'tax' (it's neither). Yet coincidentally FA Chairman Greg Dykes came out yesterday with a statement to say he agreed grassroots football was "in crisis" and he wanted to see £250m invested in it by football to solve the problem (which is 5% of the £5bn TV Rights deal, as called for in the interview). Possibly pure coincidence....

Interview is here : http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-29508876

Greg Dykes announcement is here : http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/football/29572447

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Re: The future of Bath City

Post by Eddie Hitler on Sat Oct 11, 2014 9:42 am

SteveBradley wrote:I haven't gone anywhere Eddie ! Very Happy I'm still on the Supporters' Trust committee, and still a regular on the TP terraces (I'll be there again for Shortwood later today). I just didn't have the time to remain as Chair due to other commitments at the time (non Lib Dem).

I've seen you about Steve. I wasn't suggesting a physical departure mate, but the announcement of your appointment with Bath Lib Dems seems to coincide with a deafening silence in terms of the Society's progress with anything/everything.
I understand the situation with the major shareholders not being on board which therefore scuppered the community-ownership plan (for now), but there was no announcement (to my knowledge) of any new plans or timetable, just nothing.
Good luck with a grass-roots football campaign - you might even get my vote if you manage any progress on this by the general election.
Andrew Neil - what a tosser!
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Re: The future of Bath City

Post by Eddie Hitler on Sat Oct 11, 2014 9:48 am

I've just watched the interview in full, what an arrogant, dismissive, jumped-up snob Neil is! You would have got my vote if you'd given him a good slap Steve, but then that's more a UKIP kinda response!
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Re: The future of Bath City

Post by 2weirdtown on Sat Oct 11, 2014 9:56 am

"Andrew Neil - what a tosser!"
Always seemed to me like someone trying to keep up an air of self importance. I understand that rather unnatural looking hair is just that.
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Re: The future of Bath City

Post by Twerton Parker on Sat Oct 11, 2014 10:57 am

2weirdtown wrote:"Andrew Neil - what a tosser!"
I understand that rather unnatural looking hair is just that.

Which is why Private Eye refers to him as "Brillo"!

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Re: The future of Bath City

Post by SteveS on Sat Oct 11, 2014 11:01 am

I assume Eddie started this thread as he was concerned about the future of the club, I share that concern.

As has been pointed out it was pretty futile to try and progress the community ownership initiative when 4 major shareholders came out strongly against it, for this to stand a chance of success it would require the backing of everyone within the club.

What does concern me is that over the past 9 or 10 months there has been very little (nothing?) from the Board over what the future direction of the club is. I fully appreciate that when Paul took over as Chairman, and I fully support him, he had to try and pick up whatever pieces had been left behind by MR so there was going to be a period of time needed to take stock of things. I would have thought there has now been more than enough time to assess the situation and would have hoped for some direction from the Board as to what they see the best option for the future, one thing for certain is that we cannot just continue as we are.

I think it is also worth remembering that when the community ownership presentation took place some 16 months ago one Director who was very strongly against the initiative at the time said he would reconsider his stance if the Board was not able to come up with a viable alternative option within 12 months. The 12 months has passed and still nothing new on the table, so unless the Board are planning on some sort of announcement very soon perhaps they should revisit the community ownership option.

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