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Save York City...last chance saloon

Saturday 22nd February could be the last match ever for YCFC

Saturday 22nd February 2003 could be the last match ever for York City Football Club. After the match against Bury, unless further funding is forthcoming, the Administrator could bring to an end the trading of North Yorkshire's only Football League Club.

It is understood that at least 60,000 is required to fund the forecast shortfall between income and costs for the Club over the period from 23rd February to 15th March. Having already applied 92,000 of its funds to enable the Club to survive from 19th January to 15th February, the Trust is now unable to fund the shortfall over the next few weeks. At this stage, there is no alternative source of funding in place.

Trust representative Steve Beck appealed:

"The Club is literally on the brink of extinction. It needs someone to step forward to financially rescue this community asset from destruction. Whilst the Trust continues to seek sources of finance, there is no guarantee that the money will be found."

Having being founded in 1922, the Club could cease to exist on 22nd February.

The Trust's Offer to acquire the business and assets of the Club remains in place, but it is likely to need a few more weeks for completion of the agreement with the Administrator, arrangement of the CVA with the creditors and the agreement of the players, the Professional Footballers' Association and the football authorities. Now that the Trust's Offer is the only one 'on the table', the Administrator has started to help progress the Trust's Offer towards completion. However, that could prove irrelevant, if the ongoing trading of the Club cannot be funded over the next few weeks.

Cash and pledges raised by the Trust in recent weeks have been specifically earmarked for investment in the Trust's rescue package. That means the Trust's monies cannot be used to fund the trading shortfall in the few weeks before that rescue package is agreed and put in place. In the absence of a solution by the time of Saturday's match, the Trust will make a final appeal to the supporters of the Club to try and raise the emergency funding of 60,000.

In addition to the emergency requirement of at least 60,000 by 22nd February, the Trust's Offer now needs people to turn their pledges into cash and new cash donations. Assuming that the Trust's Offer is completed by 15th March, the Trust requires at least 150,000 of additional cash donations by that date.

Under the proposed structure for the deal, that money will be invested by the Trust in a new company ("Newco"). Newco will then acquire the business and certain assets of the existing Club. Some of the money will be used as consideration to acquire the business and assets (and, in effect, be used to settle monies due to certain creditors of the old company) and some of the money will be used to fund the ongoing operations of the Club (which will be in Newco).

Going forward, after completion of the deal, the implementation of a detailed financial plan (as submitted to the Administrator) will see the Club trading around a breakeven position to the end of this season and for the following season. The improved financial management of the Club will be brought about by a combination of additional sources of income/funding and a reduction in costs. The Club will have to be operated in a way such that it 'balances the books.'

Subject to agreement by the football authorities, the new company will enable the team to continue the push towards promotion this season. The Club will continue to play at Bootham Crescent for the current season. Beyond 30 June 2003, when the Club's current lease with landlords BCH expires, the Trust will continue to seek to play its home games at Bootham Crescent at least until an alternative better facility is in place. Trust representatives continue to work positively towards ensuring York City continues to have a decent home ground. However, the Trust's Offer is not dependent on finalising a deal on the home ground of York City beyond 30 June 2003. That is a matter that can be resolved later. It is a matter that would be irrelevant if the Club was to disappear. Hence, the Trust is concentrating on saving the Club from liquidation.

The Trust's solution offers a massive benefit. Not only is there a substantial financial return to the creditors, but also to the players, staff and football creditors going forward. And, of course, the Trust's solution saves the Club for the supporters/community.

The Trust's Offer is one of substance and the Trust is prepared to see it through to try and save the Club. The Trust continues to appeal to the people and businesses of York to financially back the community-bid. The Trust has established a special 'Save City Account', whereby individuals and businesses who make significant donations can do so in the knowledge that their money will only be used if the Trust becomes the legal owner of the business and assets of the Club.

Donations can be made by cash/cheque/postal order or standing order - payable to 'Munby & Scott -Save City Account' (Royal Bank of Scotland - Sort Code 16-34-80; Account number
10144317) - send to the Trust, c/o Bootham Crescent, York.

Alternatively, to make a cash donation by credit card please CLICK HERE

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