Spireites Q&A part two: When will the takeover be completed and who are the funders? Your Chesterfield questions answered
The National League season is on hold due to the coronavirus outbreak but there is still plenty to talk about.
In part two of what will be a regular feature our Spireites reporter Liam Norcliffe answers questions from Chesterfield fans.
Question from @joe_cfc04 on Twitter: When is the takeover due to be completed given the current distractions?
Chesterfield Community Trust announced on Thursday that the proposed takeover has been delayed due to the coronavirus outbreak.
I don’t think anyone will be surprised by this given that the whole country is almost on lockdown and it is just unfortunate that it has happened at such a crucial time.
The trust first entered into talks with the club about buying it last October.
When Pemberton was appointed in January we were told it was going to be six weeks until it was completed.
The trust then suffered a setback regarding funding and the next possible date we were given was mid to late March.
The trust now hopes to resume the takeover process at the end of April so I would expect the next update to come in May.
The problem is nobody knows how long the coronavirus is going to grip the country for so it is very difficult to give an exact date for completion.
If we are still in lockdown in May then it could run into June or even July.
It really is out of everybody’s hands at the moment.
Question from Ian Thompson on Facebook: Who are Chesterfield FC Community Trust’s backers and will any current board members have anything to do with the running of the club after the takeover?
The community trust is yet to officially announce who their backers are.
However, it is my understanding that four local councils are behind the takeover.
This is why it has taken longer than what some people might have expected.
The trust’s statement on Thursday announcing the delay of the takeover said their funders are still committed but have “various pressing matters to deal with” which will of course relate to the pandemic we are facing.
It is also worth mentioning that because we are social distancing the councils can’t hold any meetings in person which they would normally do so their decision-making processes have been reduced. And as much as they can of course still communicate in other ways they will no doubt be snowed under dealing with Covid-19.
If the takeover is complete then the existing directors of Mike Warner and John Croot will resign and then the new directors will be appointed, Ashley Carson confirmed at February’s AGM.
Both of the current associate directors, Lesley Brentnall and Steve Coe, will also resign, Mr Carson said.
A company secretary will then be appointed and Mr Carson will resign.
Questions from Dave Simpson and Terry Fox on Facebook: What is the feeling around the media and at the club at how the season will end? And if it stops now how will the promotion and relegation issues be resolved?
It has been a very confusing last seven days with regards to whether the National League season is going to resume or be cancelled.
The message about the season being on/off changed daily and then a statement from National League chief executive Mike Tattersall surprised everyone.
It said: “The broad consensus was that our clubs wish for a decision to be made to close the season as soon as possible.
“The FA have been asked to assist us with making the decisions to officially postpone all remaining National League fixtures and to end the season as soon as possible for the purposes of player contracts.”
There was confusion around the use of the word “close” in the statement which made it sound like the season was set to be cancelled which it appears is not the case. It was badly worded and unclear.
The message coming out now is that the National League does want to find a way to finish the season when it is safe to do so.
It also sounds like the National League is under a bit of pressure from the EFL to finish the season because of the knock-on effect it will have on League Two, League One and the Championship if it was to be cancelled.
John Pemberton and the Chesterfield players would like to resume the seson rather than it be cancelled or games played behind closed doors.
The feeling within the media is that we want it to resume in order to maintain the integrity of the National League and because it would be extremely unfair to deny a club like Barrow the chance to get promoted to the EFL.
If the season does stop now then the campaign could be declared null and void which would mean no promotions or relegations. An alternative would be to decide league positions on average points per game but at the moment nothing is set in stone and the National League and FA are working to assess all options.