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NEWS FROM DEVA STADIUM 2002
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CHESTER CITY OPEN MEETING 7 NOVEMBER 2002

Graham Ross chaired the meeting, Stephen Vaughan and Dave Burford answered questions on the Tranmere issue.

A statement was handed out (see below) which explained in detail confidential commercial information about the Tranmere bid, the conditions on which it was based and the proposed plan for the club and its assets. SV then answered all questions. At the end he specifically asked that if anyone had still not asked a question because maybe they were too shy to ask a friend to ask it or to come up to him after the close of the meeting. No question was ducked, nor was any person who wanted to ask a question denied that opportunity.

The information given out at the meeting was far more than had been revealed previously through the media. Although he had been forced into revealing the fact of the bid by a leak, SV had wanted the fans to hear the details first.

Graham Ross pointed out at the outset that not only had there been no persuasion needed for Stephen Vaughan to attend (he had said ‘yes’ immediately he was asked), but on no occasion since the meeting had been arranged did he ever ask Graham for any rules to be imposed on the meeting or for there to be any ‘no go’ areas.

Graham Ross chaired the meeting, Stephen Vaughan and Dave Burford answered questions on the Tranmere issue.

A statement was handed out (see below) which explained in detail confidential commercial information about the Tranmere bid, the conditions on which it was based and the proposed plan for the club and its assets. SV then answered all questions. At the end he specifically asked that if anyone had still not asked a question because maybe they were too shy to ask a friend to ask it or to come up to him after the close of the meeting. No question was ducked, nor was any person who wanted to ask a question denied that opportunity.

The information given out at the meeting was far more than had been revealed previously through the media. Although he had been forced into revealing the fact of the bid by a leak, SV had wanted the fans to hear the details first.

Graham Ross pointed out at the outset that not only had there been no persuasion needed for Stephen Vaughan to attend (he had said ‘yes’ immediately he was asked), but on no occasion since the meeting had been arranged did he ever ask Graham for any rules to be imposed on the meeting or for there to be any ‘no go’ areas.

DETAIL:-

1. The bid is by Vaughan Promotions (Merseyside) Ltd.

2. The need to keep the bid confidential was standard commercial practice.

3. Given the leak of the bid to the media and, therefore, its disclosure to other bidders, the success of the bid has now been severely jeopardised.

4. Given the leak of the bid, SV wanted now to give the full details of not just the bid but of his company’s plans to the fans first, hence his acceptance of the offer to answer questions.

5. Its essentially a proposed property deal involving the eventual sale for redevelopment of Prenton Park and associated land and the building of a new stadium on the Cammell Lairds site to be let to the club (in that sense similar to plans currently being considered by Everton to sell Goodison Park for redevelopment and the renting of the Kings Dock Stadium)

6. The business plan does not involve the running of the club, which would be handed over to whoever wishes to take it over, be it the Tranmere and Wirral Supporters Trust or any other interested investors, albeit with no property assets.

7. The full plan is heavily conditioned on the granting of various planning permissions, the release of restrictive covenants and the agreement of the Football Trust to permit the sale of Prenton Park in advance of repayment of various past loans.

8. As Stephen Vaughan will not be involved in the running of TRFC, there is no impact of the FA rules on dual club ownership.

9. There is to be no merger of the clubs.

10. CCFC will benefit financially if those then running TRFC accept the offer by CCFC to host TRFC’s home games until the new stadium is completed.

11. SV declared he is fully committed to Chester City FC and that the continued financial success of VP(M)Ltd will produce further funds for the club.

12. SV said he proposes to release CCFC from its debt to his company by calling an Extraordinary General Meeting with a view to converting the loans into shares. If the company agrees, this will cancel the debt and increase the holding of his company back up to the 98% he acquired originally.

13. SV would like to see CCFC playing in a stadium owned by the club. If Chester City Council are agreeable SV ‘s company would fund the purchase of the freehold of the Deva Stadium. If not, he would wish to move the club to another site on which he would fund the building of a new stadium. He confirmed that this would only come about if he can find a site within Chester.

STATEMENT HANDED OUT AT THE MEETING

PHASE 1
Secure the removal of the covenant on the land at Ingleborough Road in order that planning permission can be subsequently sought and obtained by Wirral Borough Council for the residential build-out of the site thereby realising the full value of the land. Obtain planning permission for the land at Prenton Park for a retail park development. Wirral Borough Council would need to be receptive to talks with Newdale Developments, Vaughan Promotions, and Global Finance with regards to planning applications for existing sites to be developed. Gain the agreement of the Football Trust Foundation to the sale of Prenton Park without demand for the return of previous grant advances.

PHASE 2
Sale of Ingleborough Road to residential housing developer for 3 million pounds. Sale of Prenton Park to retail park developer for 8 million pounds. Sale of TRFC shares to supporters trusts, corporate investors and other individuals-potential revenue of 1 million pounds.
TOTAL REVENUE 12 MILLION POUNDS
INITIAL PURCHASE 5 MILLION POUNDS
GROSS PROFIT 7 MILLION POUNDS
50% TO TRFC
5O% TO VAUGHAN PROMOTIONS

PHASE 3
The 3.5 million pounds grossed by TRFC would be used towards the development of a new site earmarked for river views of Cammell Lairds land. Development of a new youth academy at a newly identified site on the Wirral. Lorraine Rogers to appoint a successor from within the club to her position as Chairman, leaving intact the current positive cash balance. All existing staff jobs (non-playing and coaching) would be retained under the management of the new Chairman.

IMPORTANT POINTS OF CLARIFICATION
TRFC to remain at Prenton Park until a suitable site on the Wirral has been formally approved by all parties concerned. As a contingency, in the interim period between the development of Prenton Park and completion of a new stadium, TRFC to play their first team fixtures at the Deva Stadium. Vaughan Promotions being profitable is to the benefit of Chester City Football Club, as Vaughan Promotions has been to date, and will continue to be, the main backers of Chester City Football Club.


Graham Ross [8 November 2002]

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