Agreement reached for ‘new era’ at Rebels

Woodside Road
Woodside Road

WORTHING Football Club hope to be able to announce their “new era” by the end of February.

Rebels said in a club statement at the end of last week that an agreement has been reached for the club to move forward, with a fresh start which will begin a new era for the club.

Everything has been agreed in principle and Rebels company secretary Alistair McKail said “there will still be a Worthing Football Club”.

He added: “That is the preferred way forward. We want to keep the company and the club going and to preserve the future of the club as it’s been here for almost 130 years.

“We’ve held a number of talks, they’ve all been amicable and we’ve been honest with everybody.

“We’ve had to take everything into account and have chosen the option which is best for the future of the club.”

Part of the package is for the club to install a 3G surface at Woodside Road, which will help generate more money for the club.

Rebels have planning permission to install a 3G surface for another two years. They originally announced plans for a 3G pitch in February, 2014, and the application was given the go-ahead in May.

Rebels are currently going through legal requirements for the new era and are set to meet with shareholders in the next couple of weeks.

The club admit they cannot say too much at the moment but hope for things to be sorted by the end of February, when there should be a clearer picture.

Part of the statement which Rebels released last week read: “Inevitably and unavoidably, there has been some speculation and rumour growing up around this process, but we are at a point now where we can share that an agreement between parties has been reached for a way forward for the club and Woodside Road as a central part of the sporting community in Worthing.

“This will represent a fresh start and new era, but will also maintain the history and tradition of Worthing Football Club as it heads towards its 130th year.

“We still have processes to go through in order for everything to be settled finally, but we are progressing these as quickly as we are obliged to do, and further information will be given as each stage is achieved.

“We thank everyone for the tremendous support given to the club so far and hope that we can pay that back with an exciting yet stable future.”

Talks had been on-going between the club and various parties since November, when Rebels held a meeting to discuss ways for the club to move forward.

With debts of almost £200,000 and having to find £6,000 per month just to open their doors, Rebels admitted at the time “for the club to thrive, change is needed”.

The playing budget was halved at the time and has since gone completely.

Since then, supporters have had collections for the players at home games, while the supporters’ association, last week, donated money to the club to clear outstanding local business bills.

Rebels also announced last week three special matchday ‘fun days’ to help boost the club.