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Council Loan


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17 replies to this topic

#1 marshy1

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Posted 11 December 2012 - 05:24 PM

Salford council have refused the loan to Salford, where it leaves them is anyones guess.
More importantly I hope it doesn't impact on us.

#2 greengrass

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Posted 11 December 2012 - 08:08 PM

I hope it is the final nail in there sorry state of a pink coffin, I agree Alan with the impact on us, I have got a really horrible feeling it will. I hope I am wrong

#3 Barnie

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Posted 11 December 2012 - 08:43 PM

How can it impact on us?
Dont worry, it will soon be Christmas!

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#4 PaulT

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Posted 11 December 2012 - 10:02 PM

It does give us the opportunity to sing "you're going bust in the morning" on January 6th (that is, if they still exsist then!).

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#5 PhillH

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Posted 12 December 2012 - 09:14 AM

The perilous and very sad position that Salford City Reds have ended up goes to show the danger of building a new ground without sufficient consultation and a closed mind containing over-optimistic assumptions.

Make mistakes in what gets built, where it gets built, the pattern of use and/or the underpinning economics and its virtually impossible to rectify these things afterwards.

So please Swinton Lions and Salford City Council. take heed of these lessons and make some effort to be more open about what is scheduled for Agecroft and get the community involved before things are cast in stone, as by then it will be too late.
Rugby League - great game, shame about the administration.

#6 Barnie

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Posted 12 December 2012 - 09:30 AM

With the council not putting any money into the new stadium im at a loss to see why the Salford situation would impact on us.
Dont worry, it will soon be Christmas!

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#7 PhillH

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Posted 12 December 2012 - 10:01 AM

With the council not putting any money into the new stadium im at a loss to see why the Salford situation would impact on us.


Where have you seen any confirmation of where the funding for the ground is going to come from?
Rugby League - great game, shame about the administration.

#8 marshy1

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Posted 12 December 2012 - 11:27 AM

Where have you seen any confirmation of where the funding for the ground is going to come from?

Phil there has been no official confirmation of where the money will come from but I think that Barnie as well as myself have been to enough of the open meetings to read between the lines that in view of the fact a local amatuer football and rugby club may well be partnering us in the stadium then funds may come from areas such as Sports England only my guess there by the way.
My initial comment of how the Salford decision would impact on us was with a view to future sponsorship etc.

#9 PhillH

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Posted 12 December 2012 - 12:05 PM

Phil there has been no official confirmation of where the money will come from but I think that Barnie as well as myself have been to enough of the open meetings to read between the lines that in view of the fact a local amatuer football and rugby club may well be partnering us in the stadium then funds may come from areas such as Sports England only my guess there by the way.
My initial comment of how the Salford decision would impact on us was with a view to future sponsorship etc.


There has been no official confirmation of anything much actually, beyond the intended location. So we are agreed that it is pure speculation on Barnie's part to state that "the council will not be putting any money into the new stadium". Fact is - he doesn't know.

While the strong rumour on the grapevine is that sale of Blue Ribbon Fields is being targetted to raise at least a part of the money, perhaps Barnie is overlooking the fact that this site is presently a Council asset. Not ready cash admittedly, but still a council asset nevertheless.

If people believe a new stadium for Swinton Lions can be constructed and run economically without some council resources they are just as deluded as Dave Tarry was when he hailed Barton as a great new era for Salford City Reds.
Rugby League - great game, shame about the administration.

#10 Barnie

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Posted 12 December 2012 - 12:42 PM

The blue ribbon may well be council owned. however Folly have a lease on the land for the next 18 years give or take. the only way the council can sell the land if folly agree to leave.
Dont worry, it will soon be Christmas!

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#11 PhillH

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Posted 12 December 2012 - 03:37 PM

The blue ribbon may well be council owned. however Folly have a lease on the land for the next 18 years give or take. the only way the council can sell the land if folly agree to leave.


Even if Folly Lane ARLFC DOES agree to leave, its not a "done deal".

Folly Lane having a lease on Blue Ribbon doesn't change the fact it is Council owned.

The notice terms between Folly Lane ARLFC and the Council will be included in the lease (which I was told has only 6 years remaining rather than your figure of 18, but that wasn't from any official source).

I would imagine for the council to realise the asset and put the proceeds to a new ground for Swinton Lions at Agecroft will require not only compliance with the lease conditions, but also an audit by the Council's Finance Officers and quite possibly a vote of elected members. The level of scrutiny likely to be applied has just gone up - that's politics!

In the case of Barton and the Council funding there, some of which was tied to land deals at the Willows, the Council's Finance Officers raised a number of concerns. Such was John Merry's enthusiasm to get that particular stadium built and shore Salford Reds finances up, those warnings were brushed under the carpet and ignored.

Things have changed and Swinton Lions aren't dealing with a leader of the Council quite so desperately keen to get them a new ground built. Put yourself in Ian Stewart's position - if those same Finance Officers that gave warnings about the viability of Barton take a close look at the business plan for Agecroft and find something is risky. do you think in light of recent events Ian Stewart would give a shrug of the shoulders, go against the advice and drive things through anyway?

Let's be honest with ourselves, the Council has bent over backwards for Salford City Reds partly due to its own vested interests. Those vested interests don't really apply to Swinton Lions.

So not only are we looking at "once bitten, twice as shy", but a starting position of the Council not being inherently as keen on Agecroft as it was on Barton.

All means the business case for Agecroft will need to be much more robust and is likely to get a harder passage.
Rugby League - great game, shame about the administration.

#12 marshy1

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Posted 12 December 2012 - 04:50 PM

Even if Folly Lane ARLFC DOES agree to leave, its not a "done deal".

Folly Lane having a lease on Blue Ribbon doesn't change the fact it is Council owned.

The notice terms between Folly Lane ARLFC and the Council will be included in the lease (which I was told has only 6 years remaining rather than your figure of 18, but that wasn't from any official source).

I would imagine for the council to realise the asset and put the proceeds to a new ground for Swinton Lions at Agecroft will require not only compliance with the lease conditions, but also an audit by the Council's Finance Officers and quite possibly a vote of elected members. The level of scrutiny likely to be applied has just gone up - that's politics!

In the case of Barton and the Council funding there, some of which was tied to land deals at the Willows, the Council's Finance Officers raised a number of concerns. Such was John Merry's enthusiasm to get that particular stadium built and shore Salford Reds finances up, those warnings were brushed under the carpet and ignored.

Things have changed and Swinton Lions aren't dealing with a leader of the Council quite so desperately keen to get them a new ground built. Put yourself in Ian Stewart's position - if those same Finance Officers that gave warnings about the viability of Barton take a close look at the business plan for Agecroft and find something is risky. do you think in light of recent events Ian Stewart would give a shrug of the shoulders, go against the advice and drive things through anyway?

Let's be honest with ourselves, the Council has bent over backwards for Salford City Reds partly due to its own vested interests. Those vested interests don't really apply to Swinton Lions.

So not only are we looking at "once bitten, twice as shy", but a starting position of the Council not being inherently as keen on Agecroft as it was on Barton.

All means the business case for Agecroft will need to be much more robust and is likely to get a harder passage.

One of the differances with Agecroft and Barton is that at Agecroft it will be used by other members of the community.It didn't take long for the community tag to be dropped from the City Of Salford Stadium and as far as I am aware apart from Salford and Sale nobody else uses it.

#13 PhillH

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Posted 12 December 2012 - 05:51 PM

One of the differances with Agecroft and Barton is that at Agecroft it will be used by other members of the community.It didn't take long for the community tag to be dropped from the City Of Salford Stadium and as far as I am aware apart from Salford and Sale nobody else uses it.


Not in the right place for anyone else to use it, really!
Rugby League - great game, shame about the administration.

#14 marshy1

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Posted 12 December 2012 - 06:03 PM

That's my point Phil.At the time the powers that be convinced people it would be used by the broad community.
Agecroft will open with possibly two local community partners.

#15 PaulT

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Posted 12 December 2012 - 07:04 PM

Back on topic (sort of!) I just saw this quote on Facebook from a Salford fan, really finding it hard to have any sympathy with them with comments like this (and please excuse the grammar, it's an exact quote but with the swearing censored!):

"Sick off swinton fans all up on their high horses now salford in extreme trouble all im saying to swinton fans is eat s**t you bitter t**ts living in the past goin on bout station road all the time qnd how you held internationals i dont f**kin care that was thirty odd years ago you absolute bitter t**ts"

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#16 kingspeedbump

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Posted 12 December 2012 - 08:05 PM

Irlam Hornets are currently training and playing at Salford's facility, where I am sure that there are other sports clubs using the facilities as well, its just we probably don't get to hear about them.

So obvisouly their stadium would certainly be considered a community stadium as well!

Bigger picture here! Salford going out of business would be a big loss to the area, as far as RL is concerned. Sale Sharks are now in most of the schools, so it'll be a matter of time before the local amatuer sides feel the pinch with loosing out on players. Granted, I feel Salford's attempts to promote the game in the area could massively improve, but you loose that and who is there to drip feed the local clubs with players? If there is no professional club in the area (if Salford go under, and while Swinton remain at Leigh), I'm sure it'll only be a generation before RL in the area dies!

One more thing that can be said about Salford, they have been a great source of revenue for my club Folly Lane over the last 18 months or so with their lottery scheme, which has helped the club during our own finanical issues. Without them the club would have had to find £1000's of pounds to cover the general costs of the club, which is certainly hard to come by these days. While I'm at it, the move to Barton has also helped another amatuer club, Eccles, who open their facilities on match days for parking and socialising. I know their finanical position is far from great, so you loose Salford and you could well loose the great amateur clubs in the area. In summary, this affects Salford, Folly Lane, Eccles and potential Irlam Hornets!

Lets all welcome the Ra, ra era!

#17 PhillH

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Posted 12 December 2012 - 08:33 PM

Irlam Hornets are currently training and playing at Salford's facility, where I am sure that there are other sports clubs using the facilities as well, its just we probably don't get to hear about them.

So obvisouly their stadium would certainly be considered a community stadium as well!

Bigger picture here! Salford going out of business would be a big loss to the area, as far as RL is concerned. Sale Sharks are now in most of the schools, so it'll be a matter of time before the local amatuer sides feel the pinch with loosing out on players. Granted, I feel Salford's attempts to promote the game in the area could massively improve, but you loose that and who is there to drip feed the local clubs with players? If there is no professional club in the area (if Salford go under, and while Swinton remain at Leigh), I'm sure it'll only be a generation before RL in the area dies!

One more thing that can be said about Salford, they have been a great source of revenue for my club Folly Lane over the last 18 months or so with their lottery scheme, which has helped the club during our own finanical issues. Without them the club would have had to find £1000's of pounds to cover the general costs of the club, which is certainly hard to come by these days. While I'm at it, the move to Barton has also helped another amatuer club, Eccles, who open their facilities on match days for parking and socialising. I know their finanical position is far from great, so you loose Salford and you could well loose the great amateur clubs in the area. In summary, this affects Salford, Folly Lane, Eccles and potential Irlam Hornets!

Lets all welcome the Ra, ra era!


Hear, hear.
Rugby League - great game, shame about the administration.

#18 PhillH

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Posted 13 December 2012 - 10:53 AM

/

That's my point Phil.At the time the powers that be convinced people it would be used by the broad community.
Agecroft will open with possibly two local community partners.


I'm not so sure the "powers that be" were really all that convinced, in truth. They had other reasons for wanting Barton to go ahead. Never take what a politician says on face value, especially Derek Antrobus - tellingly he was the councillor rolled out to try and sell the idea of Barton as a community facility. The short lived Community tag in the stadium name was only ever an insincere fig leaf.

Fundamentally Barton was never conceived as a development for community use and design-wise its not a concept that can be tagged on as an after thought.

The true goals at Barton were:

- "Place Branding" of Barton as being "IN Salford"
- Salford City Reds becoming a more regional brand, inclusive of getting out of the Willows as Dave Tarry et al believed that venue deterred their target audience
- A Super Casino to help fund construction and allow Salford City Reds to spend the maximum Super League salary cap on an ongoing basis
- Deals with Peel Holdings to get an area of land developed that the Council jointly owned
- Implementation of an over ambitious vision that Wilkinson and Merry convinced each other would work, so all their minnions fell into line

When Gordon Brown torpedoed the Super Casino policy the original business case for Barton went with it, sinking Red City Developments into the bargain. Only then was it necessary for the Council to step in with finance - justifying the spend of tax payers money was no doubt easier if the development could be marketed to any doubting elected members / grant bodies / council officers and voters as having some sort of broader community use. Once the objective of getting the money had been achieved, the community tag was promptly dropped - shows that it was a classic means to an end.

It was crass for the Council to make out replacement of a Super Casino with a couple of all weather pitches would suddenly transform it to a true community facility. They didn't properly analyse what the local community needs were and the site was in the wrong place to start with - Barton is not the home of greatest social needs within the city boundaries. Another chapter in Salford City Council's long and very sorry track record of disinterest, lack of understanding and incompetence when it comes to community level sports provision. This is a Council that has never fully understood nor fully harnessed the power of sport to do good things for society.

To do it effectively you need community partners on board from the outset and the needs of those partners have to be properly understood and accomodated. This does seem to be more the case with Agecroft, to the extent that 2 amateur sport clubs are involved to some degree, albeit its hard to know much more as nothing's in the open. There's a powerful vested interest at play given one of those amateur clubs has a lease on a key asset without which it is difficult to see where sufficient funds will come from, so there are pitfalls needing to be avoided.

eg; The facility needs to be fit for all its intended purposes and its vital for the pattern of use and split of costs for any shared facilities to be sustainable for all concerned.
Rugby League - great game, shame about the administration.