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Redevelopment Closer Than Ever?

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Author Topic: Redevelopment Closer Than Ever?  (Read 1368900 times)
BackOfTheNet
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« Reply #34580 on: July 27, 2022, 15:03:01 pm »

Wow. So that's the ACV card played because nothing credible is going to be put together in the time that's left.

I don't know why the Trust would be so surprised that Kelvin Thomas would be averse to this since it's an area of remediated land that CDNL would be able to develop themselves. I do wonder what pressure Thomas would be able to apply to a third party to make them withdraw from a deal though. Surely he has little to threaten then with beyond saying "we won't work with you", which should have been pretty obvious from the off.

It will be interesting to see what the club have to say when they offer their side of the story...
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« Reply #34581 on: July 27, 2022, 15:17:13 pm »

Peter - have the Trust sent this to members or something because there's nothing on their website or Facebook page?
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« Reply #34582 on: July 27, 2022, 15:29:30 pm »

I need to digest this before commenting but wow just wow on so many (not good) levels

Northampton Town Supporters Trust has been forced to withdraw the development plan it was seeking to bring forward for the old athletics track land behind the East Stand at Sixfields.

The Trust's joint venture partner, Northampton-based Goodwill Solutions CIC, had devised a robust and fully-costed business plan for the 3.61 acres site (an Asset of Community Value) which would have delivered investment in the infrastructure of the football club in the short to medium term.

This plan was presented to West Northamptonshire Council's leadership team at a meeting on 27 June 2022.

But it seems that shortly after the meeting information was leaked and Goodwill came under intense pressure from several quarters to withdraw from its involvement in the plan.

Among those applying the pressure, via a telephone call to Goodwill, was Cobblers chairman Kelvin Thomas.

According to Goodwill's projections, the plan would have yielded profit for the Trust of up to £250,000 a year from a commercial Boxpark development and a lorry park, which would have flexed as a fanzone on matchdays. The plan also included car parking directly behind the East Stand of the stadium.

This development profit would have been placed by the Trust in an infrastructure fund and the money would have been ring fenced to build the club's asset base and improve facilities at the stadium, thereby enhancing the matchday experience for Cobblers fans. There has been little or no investment in the stadium since 2015 other than the installation of seats in the unfinished East Stand.

We would question why any football club chairman would go out of his way to stop supporters from embarking on a scheme that would provide his club with ongoing funds - especially when they have shown no interest in this piece of land previously, it being adjacent to the stadium and subject to a long lease.

The owners also failed to sit down with a developer looking to deliver a fan-led New Hotel End project at Sixfields.

Andy Roberts, chair of Northampton Town Supporters Trust, said: "We have always said that this land at Sixfields should be ring fenced for club and community benefit.

"We believed our partnership with Goodwill would have delivered a viable and imaginative plan for the land which ticked so many boxes for both the football club, its supporters, visiting supporters and the town of Northampton.

"But it now appears that significant pressure was placed on Goodwill to withdraw.

"The intervention from the club chairman came as no great surprise, indeed we warned Goodwill that it was likely.

"It is the latest in a series of actions by the club's owners and executive, over many years, designed to undermine and discredit the Trust.

"The intervention is even more disappointing, given that the deal the owners have on the table with the council in no way guarantees the East Stand being completed, nor does it provide for any ongoing investment benefit for our football club.

"We question, as all supporters should, as to why  there is no longer any guarantee of the stand's completion in the plan of the club owners?

"It should be the foundation stone of any deal under consideration and the fact that it isn't is entirely unacceptable.

"After all, the owners have been at the club for almost seven years. They promised to finish the stand in 2015 and were given the green light to do so three years later.

"They have done nothing and there is no certainty that anything will be done.

"The Trust will now continue to explore other options for the old athletics track land in the time available to us."

The Supporters Trust has until 3 September to make a bid to buy the land behind the East Stand - the old athletics track land, comprising 3.61 acres. There is no obligation on the freehold owners, West Northamptonshire Council, to accept the bid.




My initial impression has to be one of complete astonishment. I meanÖ.. Who on earth uses that many paragraphs to convey a message. 😱😱
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« Reply #34583 on: July 27, 2022, 15:37:07 pm »

Peter - have the Trust sent this to members or something because there's nothing on their website or Facebook page?

Yes, emailed members about 14.15 this afternoon...

Think it's fair to say the trust relationship with the club/owners (whom they needed a buy in to work with anyway) is well and truly severed...

Such a robust partnership that a call from KT has blew the whole thing out the water, before it began...

Don't think they could have slagged KT/DB off anymore in that press release if they tried...

So embarrassingly unprofessional...

Wasted 6 Months for what? Giving up the ACV Roll Eyes

However, reassuring that another proposal is being worked on, sure they're queuing up eh Beds!

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« Reply #34584 on: July 27, 2022, 15:39:46 pm »

surely the chairman has to resign now.
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« Reply #34585 on: July 27, 2022, 15:42:26 pm »

OK so a few observations on this -

1) Probably not relevant now but I would be interested what the "Box Park" concept actually was - from other models this could anything from a dynamic food and entertainment village (great), especially if flexed to a fan's zone area on match days -  to a shipping container storage area (not so great) - but frankly the mention of a lorry park and car parking doesn't sound that different from something suggested that the owners were planning to use the land for - although if one was cynical they could say 100% rather than 50% of the profits would go to the club if it was the owners who developed it thus.

2) It would seem the inference is that someone from the council perhaps leaked the details of the plan and partner - not good or ethical but perhaps if the owners were never going to work with the partner perhaps better to get to this point sooner rather than later.

3) I kept my powder dry on this one but given who are the lease holders and their relationship with the Trust is anyone surprised that it seemingly only took a single phone call to get the partners to withdraw.

4) It's a disappointing but sadly an expected outcome - of course the owners will be painted as the total villains here but the reality is, like it or not they actually hold most of the cards (and the leases) and I still say certain individual need to look at their antagonistic (however much they feel justified) behaviour and honestly answer how much they have influenced this disappointing outcome. This point is also augmented by an equally insulting and antagonist approach to certain members of WNC who again like it or not had the ability to veto the plan had it got to that stage.

5) To the trust members who started this plan, no doubt put in a lot of work and came up with a costed plan with the perspective partners I have a lot of sympathy and share their disappointment re this outcome but to ignore the aspect of required cooperation with both the lease holder and the council does suggest poor advice.

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« Reply #34586 on: July 27, 2022, 15:43:13 pm »


My initial impression has to be one of complete astonishment. I meanÖ.. Who on earth uses that many paragraphs to convey a message. 😱😱

Oi geez, a question mark is required at the end of a sentence when asking a question.
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« Reply #34587 on: July 27, 2022, 15:52:01 pm »


Such a robust partnership that a call from KT has blew the whole thing out the water, before it began...



Who on earth was advising and inputting into this. 🙄🙄

Then to embark on a diatribe about someone protecting their own interests in business. Whoíd have thought that would happen.



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« Reply #34588 on: July 27, 2022, 15:52:23 pm »

surely the chairman has to resign now.

Personally I think Andy is one of the good guys who was always prepared to listen to another point of view - my brief exposure to a Trust Board meeting was there was a definite hawks and doves composition - unfortunately for me some of the hawks had closed minds, convinced they were right and failed to understand sometimes in life you have to concede certain points to achieve something - it may actually be a compromise but still benefits all parties.
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« Reply #34589 on: July 27, 2022, 15:52:52 pm »

Oi geez, a question mark is required at the end of a sentence when asking a question.

It was rhetoricalÖ
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« Reply #34590 on: July 27, 2022, 15:55:49 pm »

I have 2 immediate points that jump to mind, is this the sort of council that you really want representing the good people of Northampton?
Secondly is this the sort of owners you want for our club?
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« Reply #34591 on: July 27, 2022, 15:56:22 pm »

Some "expected" responses to the subject from certain posters.

It was most certainly not "just a call from KT" that influenced the change of heart from the JV partner. Goodwill works in partnership with WNC and the UON to name just two interested parties.

For those who are not aware and have not researched just what this company does, take a look here.... https://goodwillsolutions.co.uk/

I do agree with Peter on a number of points though. I'm not going to pretend that this would have all gone through smoothly even if the partnership between Goodwill and the Trust came to fruition. There were still many obstacles to overcome, I have alluded to those in the past, just as Peter does in his post.

The annoying thing for me was to have not even got to that point, having gone from a good plan, through meetings with the Chairman of Goodwill (who I must add has been more than cordial and accommodating during these conversations) to a point where the plug was pulled in such a short period of time due to those outside pressures mentioned.
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« Reply #34592 on: July 27, 2022, 16:04:40 pm »

So my understanding (if someone knows better please correct me)

Given the Trust are very unlikely to come up with another workable plan by September, the 6 month moratorium they held on the ACV is lost and the ACV status is therefore lost forever - I seem to recall this can be reapplied for but there is a waiting time and subject to the council agreeing this option which is somewhat unlikely.

Therefore the lease holders can pretty much do whatever they want with the land (Subject to WNC planning permission etc).

So once the judicial review on the remaining land is completed (nailed on certainty it will be found in favour of WNC) the owners will have control of the entire area.
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« Reply #34593 on: July 27, 2022, 16:10:13 pm »

So my understanding (if someone knows better please correct me)

Given the Trust are very unlikely to come up with another workable plan by September, the 6 month moratorium they held on the ACV is lost and the ACV status is therefore lost forever - I seem to recall this can be reapplied for but there is a waiting time and subject to the council agreeing this option which is somewhat unlikely.

Therefore the lease holders can pretty much do whatever they want with the land (Subject to WNC planning permission etc).

So once the judicial review on the remaining land is completed (nailed on certainty it will be found in favour of WNC) the owners will have control of the entire area.

Pretty much it! Yes I mentioned yesterday that despite the judicial review this did not stop the clock ticking on the ACV process and that 6 month date holds from the date the Council notified the Trust of their intention to sell.
I'm not sure that the other interested party really believe that the JR is a nailed on certainty....they will be spending money on the legal process and you'd think they believe they would have a chance of overturning the decision...and important to remember that is all it does, potentially just overturns the decision, calls it unlawful and then the whole process starts again, with no guarantees for Cilldara that the next result would be any different.
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« Reply #34594 on: July 27, 2022, 16:12:01 pm »

Some "expected" responses to the subject from certain posters.

It was most certainly not "just a call from KT" that influenced the change of heart from the JV partner. Goodwill works in partnership with WNC and the UON to name just two interested parties.

For those who are not aware and have not researched just what this company does, take a look here.... https://goodwillsolutions.co.uk/

I do agree with Peter on a number of points though. I'm not going to pretend that this would have all gone through smoothly even if the partnership between Goodwill and the Trust came to fruition. There were still many obstacles to overcome, I have alluded to those in the past, just as Peter does in his post.

The annoying thing for me was to have not even got to that point, having gone from a good plan, through meetings with the Chairman of Goodwill (who I must add has been more than cordial and accommodating during these conversations) to a point where the plug was pulled in such a short period of time due to those outside pressures mentioned.

Yes I did know a little bit about goodwill solutions but thank you for placing the link - it is unfortunate because I agree although the logistics aspect is a bit dry it does seem a company with a community concience and one that might have been a great partner going forward.  

I'm still a bit puzzled how UON or WNC could have strongly influenced the short notice pull out but I guess these are aspects we will never really know.
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« Reply #34595 on: July 27, 2022, 16:19:05 pm »

Pretty much it! Yes I mentioned yesterday that despite the judicial review this did not stop the clock ticking on the ACV process and that 6 month date holds from the date the Council notified the Trust of their intention to sell.
I'm not sure that the other interested party really believe that the JR is a nailed on certainty....they will be spending money on the legal process and you'd think they believe they would have a chance of overturning the decision...and important to remember that is all it does, potentially just overturns the decision, calls it unlawful and then the whole process starts again, with no guarantees for Cilldara that the next result would be any different.

Good point the "nailed on certainty" perhaps was not accurate but even if the JR finds against WNC as you say the process simply starts again and I would suggest CDNL are now in an even stronger position to outbid Cilldara as they have now essentially overcome a small problem and acquired revenue generating options on another piece of land next to the stadium.
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« Reply #34596 on: July 27, 2022, 16:21:29 pm »

Some "expected" responses to the subject from certain posters.

It was most certainly not "just a call from KT" that influenced the change of heart from the JV partner. Goodwill works in partnership with WNC and the UON to name just two interested parties.

For those who are not aware and have not researched just what this company does, take a look here.... https://goodwillsolutions.co.uk/

I do agree with Peter on a number of points though. I'm not going to pretend that this would have all gone through smoothly even if the partnership between Goodwill and the Trust came to fruition. There were still many obstacles to overcome, I have alluded to those in the past, just as Peter does in his post.

The annoying thing for me was to have not even got to that point, having gone from a good plan, through meetings with the Chairman of Goodwill (who I must add has been more than cordial and accommodating during these conversations) to a point where the plug was pulled in such a short period of time due to those outside pressures mentioned.

I can completely understand your frustration. But unless you expand on the other reasons why it didnít come about, you are open to the type of inevitable criticism that will undoubtedly follow. Like anyone, I applaud any effort to raise money through the channels identified by you. But the pivotal point was always going to be the obvious discord between the owners and the Trust. Iím not condoning what KT did. What Iím questioning is how it appears on the surface. It looks like it was bound to failure, because it was derailed by what most of us would have expected to happen. You will know the complexities, we donít. Once again, it is the supporters who are in the dark, left only to draw on their own conclusions. The next action should be a full and frank explanation as to why it failed. That is the least the people the Trust board represent deserve. I would expect a similar explanation from the club as well. They need to tell us why they intervened and what they intend to replace what seemed a good idea with.
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« Reply #34597 on: July 27, 2022, 16:29:17 pm »

Good point the "nailed on certainty" perhaps was not accurate but even if the JR finds against WNC as you say the process simply starts again and I would suggest CDNL are now in an even stronger position to outbid Cilldara as they have now essentially overcome a small problem and acquired revenue generating options on another piece of land next to the stadium.

You say that but worth remembering that their lesser figure included that land already whereas Cilldaras greater figure/offer did not. I might expect (if it ever came to pass) that Cilldara might offer more money and include that land in their bid in future because the obstacle of the ACV will have been removed. That in turn would mean that CDNL might have to offer more.

Also, nothing to stop the "re-tendering" becoming an open tender.... which might invite other parties in, thereby pushing the price up and/or giving more competition to the two established bidders.

Not advocating any of the above...just highlighting the possibilities as I see them!
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« Reply #34598 on: July 27, 2022, 16:35:43 pm »

You say that but worth remembering that their lesser figure included that land already whereas Cilldaras greater figure/offer did not. I might expect (if it ever came to pass) that Cilldara might offer more money and include that land in their bid in future because the obstacle of the ACV will have been removed. That in turn would mean that CDNL might have to offer more.

Also, nothing to stop the "re-tendering" becoming an open tender.... which might invite other parties in, thereby pushing the price up and/or giving more competition to the two established bidders.

Not advocating any of the above...just highlighting the possibilities as I see them!

Why do I get the feeling that this could escalate into being the beginning of the end of the club?
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« Reply #34599 on: July 27, 2022, 17:03:54 pm »

I canít completely understand your frustration. But unless you expand on the other reasons why it didnít come about, you are open to the type of inevitable criticism that will undoubtedly follow. Like anyone, I applaud any effort to raise money through the channels identified by you. But the pivotal point was always going to be the obvious discord between the owners and the Trust. Iím not condoning what KT did. What Iím questioning is how it appears on the surface. It looks like it was bound to failure, because it was derailed by what most of us would have expected to happen. You will know the complexities, we donít. Once again, it is the supporters who are in the dark, left only to draw on their own conclusions. The next action should be a full and frank explanation as to why it failed. That is the least the people the Trust board represent deserve. I would expect a similar explanation from the club as well. They need to tell us why they intervened and what they intend to replace what seemed a good idea with.
Canít disagree with any of that Tel.
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