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Trust Statement - 5th March 2020

Over the last two weeks, representatives of the Trust have met with Ron Martin - firstly, in a one to one and secondly, as part of a wider supporter's group. These meetings were very welcome and the parties have agreed to schedule them on a regular basis.

The first meeting covered much of the same topics as the second but also included the Chairman's support of certain Trust initiatives, which would not have been relevant to the more general group.

'Minutes' of the second meeting were made available on-line and through the usual channels by the football club. However, it would be fair to say that the minutes did not cover all subjects discussed, nor did it quite capture the extent and discussion on some of the points!

Subsequent to these meetings, it has become clear that the Chairman's stated intention to clear the debt to HMRC has not been delivered and worse, we now know, that for the second time recently, the players and staff have not been paid.

The chairman made it clear in the meetings that his long-term ambitions are to continue supporting the club financially, but, obviously, the continued delay has caused yet more bad press and worry for all concerned.

Salaries and tax are entirely predictable. This was made very clear by the Trust during both meetings. If we look back through the years, there have been many times where the timing of money received has been a problem. In all cases, so far, the sums required have been received into the football club eventually. The timing of this is the issue - a point made many times over the years. We all understand that complex property transactions can take time to complete, all the more reason then, to start their undertaking earlier. The counter argument could be, that it is best to leave assets where they earn the most, until the last possible moment. Recently, that strategy has proven flawed and the staff and players deserve more. If the situation continues, it's easy to see that a points deduction could well be in the offing. We've all written off this year ... but if the points deduction is for the start of next, it will be the fans that suffer too.

The Chairman's intentions and promises published via the club channels, need to be fulfilled and soon.

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