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Training Ground/tonight's webinar

I would like to hear an update on the training ground at tonight's webinar.

Mr Couhig mentioned it a while ago and it would be interesting to see how negotiations are going/have gone.

The site was sold for £350,000 even though it was valued at "approximately £450K" by the Trust board to a group of investors who "insisted on anonymity as a condition of the deal."

The trust board wouldn't tell us the names but the publication of the names on HM Land Registry on the old gasroom provided us with the names ie. Beeks, Kane and Keizner.

Trust directors told fans that "the investors have the interests of Wycombe Wanderers at heart" only to find the TGF's (Training Ground Funders) solicitors issued a default notice.

We were also told "the TGF are committed to the goal of reselling the training ground back to the Club at the earliest opportunity" and that the Group have a signed letter confirming the option."

It would be interesting to see if anyone has seen this signed letter and what progress has been made.

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Comments

  • Would you be happy for Rob Couhig (personally or as the club) to buy it back or does it have to go back in to the Trust asset base?

    Ideally it should go back to the Trust but they can't afford it. If Couhig or the club buy it sits outside our enshrined assets anyway and is effectively a Couhig asset.

    Essentially is getting Beeks & Co to sell more important than who buys it?

  • Difficult questions... not sure I have any answers but for the club to have the training ground as a permanent base must be of benefit to the club.

    It must be difficult to invest in a training ground facility when you don't own it.

    All my comments above come from the trust board to the fans so it would be interesting to see if a) the letter exists and b) whether Mr. Couhig has seen the letter about Beeks etc. selling the training ground back to the club.

    That deal meant effectively that while we were registered as a Community Benefit Society, the old directors who said Mr. Hayes had gifted the club money when they knew he had in fact lent the club money, were very much back in control.

  • Look. I get your conspiracy theories and the need to complain about wrongs from the past but we are where we are.

    Assuming the Trust can't raise the funds to buy the training ground back then the next best option is Couhig buys it either personally or as the club. Does this actually help the club long term in any way as the asset would be outside the enshrined status Adams Park has.

    I can see you want to highlight that no letter exists but whether it does or doesn't what is the best result going forward?

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  • I have posted what is in the public domain so I don't understand how this constitutes a conspiracy theory.

    I haven't said the letter does not exist, to the contrary, it is in the public domain that the letter does exist.

    I think the best result would be for the club to own the training ground -subject to a proper valuation and a fair price - as this would help us to invest in sport science facilities as well as helping us to attract and to retain players.

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  • @NiceCarrots said:

    All my comments above come from the trust board to the fans so it would be interesting to see if a) the letter exists and b) whether Mr. Couhig has seen the letter about Beeks etc. selling the training ground back to the club.

    @NiceCarrots said:

    I haven't said the letter does not exist, to the contrary, it is in the public domain that the letter does exist.

    I thought you were asking if the letter exists and then saying its in the public domain?

    The best result for me is the Trust buys back the training ground. Unlikely I know. I'm not sure if Couhig owning it is any different to Beeks & Co in a few years time. I guess it moves any issue down the road.

    Lets see if the question gets asked later

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  • I don't think my punctuation helped either, could be described as both "schoolboy-like" and "woeful." At one point Gareth, Dobbo and the management team couldn't use the ahem, management shower facility as it was found to have strains of Legionnaire's disease, not the sort of features you'd be happy to find in an estate agent's particulars.

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  • Most commercial leases make it the responsibility of the tenant (in this case WWFC) to maintain the property not the landlord. In that circumstance it would be WWFC job to fix the shower. Do you have reason to believe this particular lease is written in a different way? It would be very unusual.

    It is very unlikely that a landlord would prevent a tenant investing in sports science facilities if he wishes to do so. There is no reason for WWFC not to do so if they consider it worthwhile and have a reasonably long term lease. Is this not the case here?

    Whether or not you consider the training ground deal a good one or a bad one (my view for what it is worth is that it was good), its done now. For the club to buy it back would require tieing up a substantial amount of cash. Whether it should do so or not depends a) on whether it has the cash available and b) on the relationship between cost to buy and rent going forward. Do you have those two figures?

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  • Easy to say we should buy it back and to be unimpressed with aspects of how it came about but is it an urgent priority at the moment if the rent isn't a burden and we have access? Probably not. There were already a number of other priorities due to wear and tear and historical lack of funds , and the Couhigs are rightly concerned with investments that will have a return to help the year on year break even position.
    It would certainly leave a bad taste in the mouth if our dear old board members threw us out or made a big profit on our backs but I'm not aware that being imminent.

  • @NiceCarrots said:
    I don't think my punctuation helped either, could be described as both "schoolboy-like" and "woeful." At one point Gareth, Dobbo and the management team couldn't use the ahem, management shower facility as it was found to have strains of Legionnaire's disease, not the sort of features you'd be happy to find in an estate agent's particulars.

    I've worked at a very prestigious private club who regularly had Legionnaires problems. Probably best to know rather than not so happy the club test.

    So is the letter available publicly?

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  • I assume, and certainly hope, that until we've raised the funds needed to 'Protect the Quarter,' all other investments are off the table for the Trust.

    I'm not sure why the Couhig's would want to buy it, other than just to have it.

    Selling the training ground may not have been a good deal for the club at the time, and certainly doesn't look like one now, but the money kept the club afloat.

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  • I asked to see the letter verbally and via email as was documented at the board minutes. The directors expressed their concerns about me asking and I was asked to focus on the future and not the past. I was told that I could have sight of the letter but I got binned before I saw it as fellow directors fabricated a story about me handing out copies of the legal letter from the solicitor containing the default notice at an away match at Barnet which I was accused of without a shred of evidence and just not true.

    The Trust board meetings were held at Mr. Howard's house which I thought bizarre given he wasn't on the Trust board and run along the lines of Fit In or Feck Off.

    I only managed one of these two things.

  • i am sure it must have been disappointing to have to resign from the Trust a few years ago. I am struggling though to see its relevance or the relevance of where trust meetings used to be held to a thread about whether we should repurchase the training ground.

    Unless the letter you refer to is a legally binding option not negated by change of control of the club (which feels unlikely), I dont quite understand the importance you place on it.
    Unless its legally binding, its surely just a statement of intent. So what?

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  • Do you think the letter exists @NiceCarrots ?

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  • We've been told there is a signed letter confirming the option but I can't say for certain as I haven't seen it myself.

    I imagine the Couhig must have looked at this option as part of their due diligence.

    Perhaps one of the Trust board directors who frequent this message board will shed some light upon it.

  • Oh......he's back :(

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  • Rob Couhig said tonight in webinar that negotiations to buy back training ground have been frustrating, thinks it probably won't happen. Currently negotiating new two year lease, without FALL part of it. He thinks they may be training elsewhere in two years time. Improvements will still be made to it, to help attract players, but not a big investment.

  • Yep. Started reading the first post before I'd clocked who was behind it.

  • @Steve_Peart said:
    Rob Couhig said tonight in webinar that negotiations to buy back training ground have been frustrating, thinks it probably won't happen. Currently negotiating new two year lease, without FALL part of it. He thinks they may be training elsewhere in two years time. Improvements will still be made to it, to help attract players, but not a big investment.

    So, @NiceCarrots was right all along? Cool that so many abused him to hell for it.

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  • It's clear that he wants to own the training ground, at the right price. If not the current one then elsewhere.

    I thought the most interesting moment was him saying that Pete thinks fans might be let in on Boxing Day. Rob thinks soon after, which I took to mean around New Years Day. I am resigned to not seeing any games this season, so it made me think he has some inside knowledge on this.

  • edited November 2020

    @drcongo said:

    @Steve_Peart said:
    Rob Couhig said tonight in webinar that negotiations to buy back training ground have been frustrating, thinks it probably won't happen. Currently negotiating new two year lease, without FALL part of it. He thinks they may be training elsewhere in two years time. Improvements will still be made to it, to help attract players, but not a big investment.

    So, @NiceCarrots was right all along? Cool that so many abused him to hell for it.

    Rob said that rent is all paid up, repairs have been done but not major investment as they don't have a lengthy agreement. It would appear that our benevolent friends who stepped in to buy the training ground purely to save the club of course, having taken rent and interest won't now entertain selling it back to the club (or Rob) at what RC thinks / says is a fair market price and they haven't been able to make any progress on doing so. No wonder they requested to be kept anonymous at the outset.

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  • New posh seats in the dugouts.

    You may have seen in the Bournemouth match video that the fourth pylon has gone. The new one is due to be installed next Wednesday, when a lot of Wycombe residents will have a power cut for an hour.

  • Yes, the Xmas / NY return of fans news was a bolt out of the blue and was mentioned throughout.

    On the training ground it struck me that Rob is not going to be dicked around by the benevolent owners - it seemed a public ‘sell it or we’re off’ messsge. I’ll get off now before a West Country based poster revives lectures from the past about planning re-zoning.

  • @Steve_Peart said:
    New posh seats in the dugouts.

    New Dugouts as well I think @Steve_Peart

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  • You're right @ValleyWanderer, much deeper.

  • That first game back is going to be a very emotional experience I think.

    Part of me thinks it would be better to wait until we can get 10,000 in and make it a proper party, but I suppose that the first time we can do that will also be a special occasion

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  • Christmas would seem an odd time to relax the rules given that political pressures will likely mean that families will be allowed to travel around the country meeting up and spreading germs at that time when medically that probably shouldn't be permitted. I would have thought mid/late Jan would be more logical when the effect of Christmas is clearer.

    That said there are games now in Northern Ireland and I believe Scotland with spectators. It is hard to see why it can be done safely there but not here equally it is hard to see why 600 people can safely watch a Southern League game but 1200 cannot watch a EFL game in a much bigger more easily compartmentalised stadium.

    As for the training ground without knowing the values the club and the owners are currently placing on a field surrounded by more undeveloped fields, its hard to judge who is in the right and who the wrong now.

  • It hasn't stopped you before

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  • Even if they've convinced the right people in Government it won't happen until lockdown is over and host regions are out of special measures. January might happen, perhaps with clubs opening and closing up to a certain number of fans based on infection rates. Lots of merit in waiting until more can be let in or something resembling normal exists but people are impatient, £ is needed and normal could be a way off.

    I'm inclined to think that the training ground owners should be prepared to sell back (to FALL or trust so it's protected, if not the Couhigs directly) at whatever they paid plus interest but that might be old fashioned.

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