Wrexham FC held its second AGM under fan-ownership last night (Thursday 28th November), and unveiled a raft of new initiatives to take the club forward.
Presenting the financial accounts to a packed meeting of around 200 members of the Supporters Trust/club owners, Finance Director Mark Williams noted that the club was now officially debt free for the first time in many years. He said “As a Board, a Club and Supporters Trust, we have spent the two years since fan-ownership in November 2011 taking difficult decisions, and putting the club on a sound footing. I am delighted we have done that together, and we are now planning for the exciting changes that will grow our business off the field and provide a sound platform for success on the pitch too”.
The accounts show that the Supporters Trust have now invested more than half a million pounds of share capital in the club, and the operating deficit for the club is reducing year on year in line with plans. Whilst the club is forecasting a £135,000 loss this year, a good run in the FA Cup and successful defence of the FA Trophy could see the Club return to the black by the summer. The club badge has also been registered as a trademark for the first time.
Peter Jones, chair of the Supporters Trust spoke about the transparency and openness that are the guiding principles for the way the Club is now run. “Businesses of our size are not required to publish full accounts. We choose to share as much information as we can in an open meeting, and to publish the full accounts on our website. I wish all clubs followed our lead”.
The meeting also heard from Club Director, Spencer Harris, about a number of initiatives that the Board have been working on to develop the club within the town and across North Wales and the Marches. Key amongst these were developing the match-day experience with a theme of “Wrex-citement”, building on the 18,000 fans who followed the Club to Wembley twice last season. Members were strongly supportive of the proposals, and took to social media after the meeting to develop the ideas further.
The meeting concluded with an outline of the plans to celebrate the Club’s 150th anniversary in November 2014 – making it the third oldest professional football club in the world after Stoke and Notts County. The packed programme includes a number of events featuring former players, a Wrexham “legends” game, a special Royal Mail stamp, and a commemorative tournament at the RaceCourse. In a final flourish, Peter Jones unveiled a special golden version of the club’s badge for next season, emblazoned with “150 Years”. This will feature on the team strip as well as a range of anniversary items.