Chairman's New Year Message

Greensnet Editor
Sat 01 Jan 2022, 18:00

2021 is not a year that I will remember with any great fondness from a footballing perspective.

The Covid-19 curtailment of the 2020/21 season meant that the first football we saw was in our pre-season campaign. After that, everything that could have gone wrong, did. Key players were injured for long periods, early season games were played without a recognised striker and Lee was never able to select the same team for
consecutive matches.

Failure to progress in either FA competition meant that we missed out on the possibility of lucrative gate receipts and prize money. And, just as our form was improving with three straight League wins, along came Covid again, this time a mass breakout amongst the squad and staff resulting in the postponement of our last two home League fixtures. Add into the mix, disappointing crowds, a lack of match-day volunteers, dwindling financial reserves, the loss of some long-term fans and the departure of Daz Bloor – to whom I once again offer my thanks – and I’m happy to see the back of 2021.

In contrast, I’m looking forward to 2022. The Trust Board goes into the New Year with a sense of optimism and urgency, keen to strengthen our financial position both in the short-term and the long-term.

We’re launching “Project 500” where we’ll be striving to improve our home gates up to and beyond 500. Other clubs have done it – so can we. Along with Faye Allinson, we’ll also be putting together a calendar of events, including a Quiz Night, a Golf Day, more “Evenings With ...” and a Ska Night.

Lastly, and most significantly, the Trust Board will be consulting fans about possible changes to our ownership structure. To be clear, we are not advocating selling the club outright, simply recognising that being 100% fans-owned has advantages and disadvantages. One key advantage is that we are in complete control of our destiny but we are a small club with limited resources, an ageing fanbase and dwindling income. The Trust Board feels that, in order to survive in the medium-term, we need to consider whether there is an alternative ownership structure that would allow us to bring in new money and expertise without giving up overall control of the club.

You’ll be hearing more about all of these initiatives in the weeks to come and we hope that we will be able to rely on your support. It is your club after all.

Thanks for your continuing support and Happy New Year.

Simon Lawrence