Shakers President Urges Council To Buy Club's Assets

Thursday, September 19th, 2019 11:10am

By Joseph Timan - Local Democracy Reporter

The president of Bury FC has urged the council to “be bold” and buy the club’s assets.


Derek Calrow has pleaded with politicians to provide the “sound foundations” to save the struggling club.

The former stockbroker’s comments come after councillors threw out proposals to enter negotiations with Bury FC.

He said: “Warm words and support are good public relations but will not secure the long term future of Bury Football Club at the Gigg Lane stadium. Action is required by Bury Council to buy the assets of the stadium in the interests of the Bury community.

“The leader of the Conservative group Cllr James Daly has clearly demonstrated the full support of the Conservative group of councillors for such an acquisition and furthermore how the move would be financially viable.

“Whatever happens with the English Football League (EFL) issues and future ownership of Bury FC are different issues but the move I plead the council and members of parliament to adopt would provide the sound foundations for the satisfactory resolution of the other issues.

“I call on all Bury councillors, James Frith and Ivan Lewis to be bold and protect the heritage of Bury FC.”

Last week, an emergency motion instructing Bury Council to immediately express its interest and put together a business plan for purchasing the football club was rejected.

Instead, the council voted to continue supporting the work of the rescue board with the aim of developing proposals to readmit the club to the English Football League which it must submit by tomorrow.

Cllr Sandra Walmsley, who put forward Labour’s amendment to the Tory motion, also said that the council will work with Forever Bury, Greater Manchester mayor Andy Burnham and local MPs to develop a “credible plan” to rebuild the club by the end of the year.

She said: “We need a clear strategy which enables new investors to come forward and for the club to continue playing league football at Gigg Lane.”

Bury season ticket holder Cllr Clare Walsh, who represents the area in which Gigg Lane is located, warned that the proposal to enter negotiations would “derail” the work of the rescue board.

Cllr James Daly, who tabled the emergency motion to buy the club, told councillors that the local authority had nothing to lose by agreeing to investigate whether it can purchase the football club.

The Conservative leader accused the ruling group of “political point scoring”, mocking their praise of MP James Frith and their insistence to continue supporting the work of the Labour-dominated rescue board.

The rescue board must submit a proposal by tomorrow for the EFL to consider readmitting Bury FC to the football league.

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