As an interested party in the two Assets of Community Value (ACV) on Huish Park and the surrounding land, the Glovers Trust Board exercised its right, by majority vote to delay the sale of Huish Park to South Somerset District Council (SSDC).
The Glovers Trust Board recognised that the proposed sale of Huish Park and the surrounding land to SSDC was a pivotal moment in the history of Yeovil Town Football Club (YTFC). The activation of the ACV’s has allowed the Board time and space to fully investigate the proposal from SSDC and to give consideration to the partnering with other interested parties, with a view to making a bid to purchase.
Members of the Glovers Trust overwhelmingly supported our actions following the release of our findings on the 1st March 2021.
As early as December 2020 potential investors and consortia reached out to the Glovers Trust Board to declare an interest in the club and the land based on significant supporter involvement. This supporter involvement was at the heart of every proposal the Glovers Trust Board entertained.
Over the six-month period several groups have made contact with the Glovers Trust Board and we are aware parties have reached out to intermediaries at the club.
The statutory period of six months moratorium expires on 26th May 2021. We believe that the intervening period has been invaluable and hopefully pivotal to the future of YTFC. Without the delay, the proposed deal between owners of Huish Park and SSDC would have been rushed through by January 2021, long before any reasonable scrutiny could have been conducted. The delay has also given others the chance to reflect on the scheme and for the cultivation of a belief that a better route can be found to secure the long-term security of our club.
The provisional plans shared with us by the SSDC may bring a limited short term financial boost, however there is no legal framework to guarantee that YTFC benefits from the scheme over the longer term. We believe that under this proposal the future of YTFC is in jeopardy.
We also note the public war of words between SSDC and Marcus Fysh MP regarding the decisions that have been made regarding the Yeovil Refresh scheme and scrutiny on decision-making and finances involved with it. Surely we do not need our football club to get caught up in similar political criticism.
We acknowledge that from Wednesday 26th, the owners are free to continue with the proposal from SSDC or to affect a sale to whomsoever they choose. The Glovers Trust Board’s stance remains unaltered with regard to the SSDC proposal in that we retain major concerns. This proposal was championed as ‘the only option’ but this has been proved to have been only one of the options available. The Glovers Trust Board hold serious reservations as to whether the monetary figures involved add up. Will a tenant YTFC ever be in a financial position to own Huish Park again?
We will continue to object to the SSDC proposal as strongly as possible and in pursuit of this aim we have sent letters to the lead Councillor, Chief Executive Officer and Chief Executive Officer elect. A copy of this letter is attached to this statement.
We will strive to work with those who seek a strong and vibrant future for YTFC based on community values and involvement.
If you’d like to become a member of the Glovers Trust and have your voice as a Yeovil Town fan heard as part of a democratic process, head to Glovers-Trust.co.uk.