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MAY 1999

28 May 1999
It appears that the Football League are to insiste that no club in administration or receivership would be allowed to kick of the new season on August 7th, although they may still be included in the provisional fixture list which is due for release on June 22.

Any club which fails to make the start of season deadline would not be replaced and all cash due from League sources (tv etc) would be redistributed among the remainder clubs.

The Football League's AGM takes place at Carden Park on June 12 and it's widely believed that firm assurances would be sought then.
City have arranged the following provisional pre-season friendlies.
July 10 – Northwich Victoria (A)
July 13 – Witton Albion (A)
July 24 – Wigan Athletic (H)
July 31 – Port Vale (H)
Aug 3 – Colwyn Bay (A)

26 May 1999
First indications from Monday's ISA Support The Bid meeting at the Town hall are that a tremendous amount of £73,000 was pledged on the night for the ISA Trust Fund and share issue. More details to follow...

24 May 1999
The ISA are holding a public meeting at Chester Town Hall tonight. The meeting has been arranged to coincide with their bid, along with a local business consortium, to gain control of the club. ALL City supporters and local businessmen have been urged to turn up. "All we want is for as many supporters possible to turn up," said Independent Supporters' Association Michael Fair today. "If you want this club to survive then we need people there tonight. The reason why we've put this bid in and the reason why we've organised this meeting is because our members want us to. We've gone this far and we want to see it through."

The ISA have also issued an invitation to Reg Brealey to attend. Brealey tabled a bid to buy the Blues on Friday and is awaiting a response from administrator David Acland. "We want him to come and see if we can work together on a deal to save the club," added Fair.

Officials and councillors from Chester City Council will be present at tonight's meeting.

Meanwhile ex-chairman Mark Guterman has denied that he has had talks with anyone concerning the purchase of his major shareholding which he still has in the club.
20 May 1999
According to reports tonight on BBC Radio5 Live, Reg Brealey is expected to complete his takeover of Mark Guterman's major shareholding tomorrow (Friday).

The following comes from a very informative Grantham Town website:

"The financial backer of Grantham Town Football Club this season and the major shareholder, Reg Brealey, was declared bankrupt by the courts this week. The former Lincoln City director and Sheffield Utd Chairman, who also controlled Darlington Football Club until recently was taken to court for £45,000.

The bill for £45,000 came from a company of Scottish lawyers and is disputed by Reg Brealey. Waiting in the wings is a much larger amount owing. The Inland Revenue are currently chasing £3.15 million from Brealey.

Should Reg Brealey contest the £45,000 the Inland Revenue bill will automatically take president and as a result Brealey has been advised not to contest the £45,000.

For the time being a receiver has been appointed to safeguards the assets of Reg Brealey. This are believed to total some 16 million pounds."
18 May 1999
Darren Moss has been given professional terms at Chester. Moss, 18 next Monday, has signed a year's deal and said: "It's really gone well this year and I think Dave Fogg has been the one who's pushed me, I'm a bit shocked at how things have gone but I was delighed to sign a one year professional contract.I like playing right wing back although I don't mind where I play," said Moss, who is also making a big name for himself as a Welsh international. "I had a good tournament in Italy at Easter – we were over there for 10 days.I was supposed to go to Holland and France this weekend for another youth tournament but I got a letter saying it was cancelled. They may be arranging another one in the summer so I'll see what happens."

17 May 1999
Solicitors for Reg Brealey have confirmed that moves are being made to buy the club. Simon Ledbrooke, of Manchester-based Fox, Brooks and Marshall, said: "Reg Brealey is trying to put together a group of businessmen to secure the future of the club and I hope to have something more to say later in the week." Brealey is believed to have already held talks with ex-chairman Mark Guterman regarding his majority shareholding in the club.

13 May 1999
The ISA have teamed up with local businessmen, including Chester chemist Ian Swettenham, in a final effort to buy the club. And a key part of their exciting plans include the setting up of a trust fund and the possibility of a public share issue.

Administrator David Acland the man selling the club has received the bid from the fans and he will now be working on its viability. ISA spokesman Michael Fair said:
"The ISA have always believed that the interests of the club would be best served by local ownership. It is our intention that all in the community will have the opportunity to buy into the club. If we are successful we intend to make a public share issue. Due to statutory regulations we are not able to say more at this stage about a possible share issue, but it is likely to be attractive to the modest investor. To accommodate the smaller investor, who wants to make a financial contribution to the purchase and subsequent running of the club say up to £250 the ISA are today launching a trust fund. We already have received hundreds of pledges from people wanting to contribute and we would ask them to send their donations in immediately.

"The business community will have an opportunity to be involved in the development of what we see to be a community club. The civic authority too has an important place in our plans and I am delighted to report that the ISA are involved in positive discussions with both elected members and officers of the City Council. A public meeting is to be held at Chester Town Hall on Monday May 24 at 7.30pm when more details will be made available."

11 May 1999
According to reports on Radio Merseyside, Gantham chairman Reg Brealey is expected to make an offer for Mark Guterman's majority shareholding today.

The ISA along with a new Chester based consortium of businessmen were to meet David Acland over the weekend to open talks regarding a takeover after submitting a formal bid for the club. Chester chemist Ian Swettenham is believed to be the main player in the new consortium.

David Acland has a date with the Football League on Thursday where several 'crisis' clubs have been asked to give guarantees and assurances that they can fulfil next seasons fixtures. This isn't a cut-off date however and a league spokesman has added that there is as yet no definite date for expulsion from the league.
Winners were
£1000 - Ian Ramsden, Great Boughton Chester - Ticket 7386
Video recorder - Mrs F Worrall , Plas Newton Chester - Ticket 11051
Microwave oven - Mr I Berry, Didsbury Manchester - Ticket0737
Sony PlayStation - Mark Smith, Trentham, Stoke on Trent - Ticket 8973
£100 supermarket voucher - Miss Davis, Bournemouth, Dorset - Ticket13285

Thanks to all who took part in the event. The raffle raised £11,206 giving a profit of £10,450 for the ISA Fighting Fund. The bucket collection from the Rotherham game was £1,256.21
Defender Ross Davidson picked up the Player of the season award befoer Saturday's match, runner-up was Luke Beckett. Martyn Lancaster won the Young Player of the Year award while the Away supporters award went to Dave Flitcroft. Congratulations to all.
[ISA March] Around 400 people took part in the march from the Town Hall to the match on Saturday. There was a carnival atmosphere as fans with banners, along with the City drummers weaved their way through town and down to the Deva. ISA spokesman Mike Fair said: "It was a celebration, because we never actually thought we would get to the end of the season. We all know about the troubles, but the march was about forgetting this and celebrating all the hard work of the fans during the season. The fans have been magnificent and on Saturday I was proud to be a Chester City supporter. We applied to the city for permission to take collection buckets on the march, but they said we couldn't do this because we needed a license. But although we didn't have a collection, many, many people were spontaneously coming up to us and giving us money. This just shows the affection the city has for the club."

It is confirmed that only Andy Crosby, Luke Beckett, Martyn Lancaster, Wayne Brown and Gary Bennett have contracts for next season.
Former City defender Peter Jackson has been sacked as manager of Huddersfield Town, he joins Graham Barrow who was axed at Rochdale last week. Incidentally, Shaun Reid's name has been linked with the vacancy at Spotland.
3 May 1999
The ISA are organising a march from the Town Hall to the Deva for the final match of the season next Saturday. ALL supporters are urged to make every effort to come along and help publicise the clubs plight through the city centre. Meet at the Town Hall at 13.00, the march then starts at 13.15. and will walk down St Werburgh Street, Eastgate Street and back up past the Town Hall, Nothgate Street, Garden Lane, Cheyney Road, Stadium Way, Bumpers Lane.

"On Saturday May 8th, the Blues take on Rotherham United in what could well be the last game of League football to take place in Chester. During a season where we never knew if we would survive week to week, the one thing that has kept this club kicking has been the fans. This march has a double edged reason, in that we celebrate the fact that the club has, against all odds, managed to finish the season; and we mourn the fact that we may no longer see our beloved Chester City play in the Football League again. Those with flags, please bring them. Those without, why not make a banner. This is a peaceful celebration of our club, and it's 111 year history. Make it as colourful and as happy as you can.

Show your support for Chester City F.C., and your civic pride in Chester. All gather in the Town Hall square at 1.00pm, ready to march at 1.15pm."

Mark Howell (ISA chairman)

A4 posters for display are on the Kiosk in Eastgate Street and at Corals in Bridge Street.

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