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Mixed News For Troubled Non-league Clubs

Non-league clubs are particularly vulnerable in the economic downturn and there has been mixed news recently for those in difficulty. Businessmen Stephen Beer has taken a 48 per cent stake in struggling Conference side Weymouth in return for the £300,000 they need to keep them going until the end of the season. Beer owns a cleaning business, a haulage company and a hotel. He criticised past 'get rich quick' schemes at Weymouth and made it clear that he would not provide a pot of money.

Investor Walks Out On Linnets | King's Lynn FC

Conference North outfit King's Lynn FC have suffered a major blow with the sudden departure of major investor Michael Chinn who has resigned from the club's board for 'personal reasons'. The former Boston United director had pumped in an estimated five figure sum since he joined the Linnets in 2006. Lynn chairman Ken Bobbins revealed that the club have 'had a couple of big blows recently.

Conference Clubs In Tax Trouble

At least nine Conference clubs have tax bills threatening their existence. A higher number of clubs than expected from the Blue Square Premier, North and South have fallen foul of the stringent quarterly checks after the summer launch of the Financial Reporting initiative. This was set up by the Conference and the FA to monitor the returns of clubs to HM Revenue and Customs. Conference chairman Brian Lee said, 'Part of the problem is that football is an incomparable industry.

Wrexham AFC's Ambitious Plan

Blue Square Conference side Wrexham has revealed an ambitious £40m investment plan designed to transform the former league club's finances and lead to the rebuilding of the historic Kop. The club has lodged revised plans for a £40m Glyndwr University village with space for 800 students, the income from which it is hoped will clear the club's massive £3m-£4m debts. Any further profit would then be used to finance the rebuilding of the historic Kop stand, which is currently out of action.

The M Word | Football Club Mergers

Ground sharing between clubs is always unpopular with fans, but mergers of clubs attract even more opposition as they destroy a cherished identity. In most sectors of business a merger is a normal rationalisation procedure when businesses are failing, but in football it happens rarely and generally at the lower levels of the game. Dagenham and Redbridge, now in League 2, can trace back its lineage to three clubs. Moor Green, hit by a series of devastating arson attacks, merged with Solihull Borough to form Solihull Moors. However, it's not a costless process.

Recession Hits Non-League Clubs

Non-league football clubs are taking a big hit as the economy slips into recession. Conference outfit Grays Athletic have cut their players' wages by a 50 per cent payment deferral to avoid going into administration which is technically a breach of contract and allows players to leave. Workington managed to negotiate a voluntary 10 per cent cut. Despite riding high in the Ryman South, Folkestone Invicta are on the verge of financial meltdown.

The Financial 'Meltdown' and Football

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has talked this weekend of a 'meltdown' in the world's financial system which could lead to a further 20 per cent being wiped off stock exchange values. We don't claim to be economic forecasters on this page, but one of the difficulties with statements of this kind is the so-called 'Oedipus effect': making the prediction increases the chances of it occurring. Some of the commentary in recent days has come from people whose agenda is the failure of the Premiership.

Credit Crunch Could Hit Non-League Football Clubs

There has been a lot of speculation about whether the credit crunch will hit a leading Premiership club, but it may be non-league clubs that will be first in the firing line. The sums involved are smaller, but such clubs are often dependent on the patronage of local businesses. Smaller businesses are very reliant on cash flow and banks are reluctant in present circumstances to cut their overdrafts or give them new loans. A number of non-league clubs are currently facing difficulties.

Terras To Sell Stadium

Weymouth Football Club have announced plans to enter into a deal that could see the club move into a new stadium.  The Blue Square Premier outfit will ask shareholders to approve a deal with Wessex Delivery Partnership. Under the terms of the deal, the club will continue to play their games at the Wessex Stadium until the new venue is built to Football League standards.

Terras In Trouble

Supporters of Blue Square Conference side Weymouth are anxious about the club's future after rumours that ownership of the land the Wessex Stadium sits on is to be transferred to Wessex Park Limited. Wessex Park Limited was set up by football club owner Malcolm Curtis in January 2007 when former chairman Martyn Harrison announced major cutbacks. Chief sponsor Dave Higson, from Park Engineering, warned the move could be the beginning of the end for the club.