The Bath City FC Supporters Society will be holding a public meeting in Randalls at Twerton Park at 7.30pm on Thursday 15th September. The meeting will give interested parties an opportunity to hear about the Big Bath City Bid and to ask questions about the recently relaunched community share offer.
Through the Big Bath City Bid, the Bath City FC Supporters Society is aiming to raise £300,000 by 28th September. If successful this will enable the Supporters Society to become a majority shareholder in the club, with a view to converting Bath City FC into a community-owned football club.
The Supporters Society invited public and businesses interested in supporting the Big Bath City Bid, as well as those that have previously pledged, but who want more information on the relaunches community share offer.
The link to the Crowdfunding page can be found here: http://www.crowdfunder.co.uk/bigbathcitybid/
The plan is to relaunch the Bid and use the proceeds to increase the Supporters Society’s stake in the club to over 50%, thus making the Supporters Society, a democratic membership organisation, the club’s majority shareholder.
Plans to move the club into community ownership were originally announced in 2015 and attracted the support of ex-Manchester United legend Eric Cantona, Royle Family actor Ricky Tomlinson, and Sky Sports pundit and ex-Bristol Rovers and ex-Leicester City manager Ian ‘Olly’ Holloway who along with former Bath City player and Southampton favourite Jason Dodd were guests of honour at the original Big Bath City Bid community share offer launch. The Bid is also passionately supported by two-time Palme D’Or winning film director Ken Loach, a resident of Bath who is one of the club’s biggest fans.
Nick Blofeld, who will become the Chairman of the proposed new board and is former chief executive of Bath Rugby, and who has been helping push the community ownership project forward said, “This will be a huge benefit for the club and hopefully the city as a whole. Bath needs a secure, stable and ambitious football club that is really engaged with the community. This ownership model is the best way to achieve it.
“Once we have moved into community ownership, a restructured Board will be put in place consisting of some members of the existing board, for continuity and their detailed knowledge about the day-to-day running of the club, plus fresh Board members with new skills, experience and contacts. The new Board will then work to complete a partial redevelopment of Twerton Park (the north car park and stand area). This will release funds to clear all pressing debts, putting the club on a more sustainable footing.
“Once the debts are cleared, the Supporters Society will then seek fresh finance, if necessary, to buy out the existing shareholders and move to the second phase of converting Bath City FC Ltd to a Community Benefit Society (CBS), with a new constitution and a fully-elected Board. This will put the club in a sound financial position, and help achieve the ultimate goal of providing the city with a football club that is a real asset to the city, attracting more fans and business support, and striving for promotion.
“It is an exciting time for Bath City FC and we hope as many people as possible will want to be part of a rare opportunity of owning part of your local football club or volunteering to help run it.”
The Supporters Society is confident that the new prospectus and the more structured, two-stage plan towards full community ownership, will attract even more support from individuals and businesses across the city and wider community. The Supporters Society encourages all Bath residents and businesses to visit www.bigbathcitybid.org.uk for more information on how they can get involved.