June update.

We were asked by Push the Boundary in May to add our support to their petition and latest letter to the owner demanding he sell the Club. We unanimously agreed as a board that we would not support this position, preferring to continue to work with the Club.

We understand supporters’ frustrations as keenly as anyone, we are supporters ourselves. Recent league positions are a significant under performance for a club with our pedigree. The fiasco that is the North Stand has gone on far too long and needs to be resolved quickly one way or another. However, we believe to attempt to effectively drive Mr Lemsagam out of town (when he is the man keeping the Club afloat) with
no plan B and no funding is not a credible position.

OASF longer term view (advocated by the FSA) is that we should continue to work with the Club and, we must continue to follow our Strategy published in April. http://www.trustoldham.org/objectives-and-aims-for-2020/

We successfully launched the 1895 Lottery in May. This is the Foundations first attempt to start to build funds into the 1895 Contingency Fund. This will be ring-fenced for majority shareholding, of Club, Stadium or both. It could be argued the Foundation should have had a Contingency Fund in place a while ago, but we are where we are. More Contingency Fund initiatives are planned for later this year.

OASF’s shorter or immediate position is that we should continue to pursue our “Manifesto for Club Improvement” recently endorsed by our Membership at the beginning of May.

Both these initiatives were presented to the Club’s Board at the recent Board meeting on 4th June by Foundation Director and Club Rep Paul Hughes. In this regard the appointment of a proven Manager on a longer contract has been achieved. Keith Curle now needs the Club’s Directors and staff ‘s 100% support in allowing him to shape his squad to be competitive on the pitch and put the Club generally in a better place.

The next major issue for OASF is to continue to press as best we can for the club to resolve the difficulties with the North Stand.

We have been asked if the PTB letter and petition was discussed in the latest Club Board meeting. The answer is, yes and no, it was brought up but there was no substantive discussion. The letter was only very recently received and rightly addressed to Mr Lemsagam personally as the major (97%) Shareholder. As such it is his responsibility to determine his response.

The Club issued for the first time a “Board Report” that was published on the Club’s website. It is envisaged that this will become a regular feature. We have been asked if Paul Hughes was aware of and agreed the contents of this report and Paul confirmed his agreement that it was an accurate report.

What’s your Reaction?

17 thoughts on “June update.

  1. Mike Halliwell

    Surely you should be backing what 3000 fans have signed regardless of your personal opinions? I haven’t agreed in the past with Ptb but there is no denying anymore that it’s what the majority want. If I was in your position and didn’t want to back the fans I’d resign or you back it regardless of what you think.

    1. MSA

      I handed a change.org petition into my local Council (not Oldham) about a planning matter, with 12,000 signatures on.
      I had to repeatedly say to people to not use multiple email accounts, not get friends to sign up, and not use silly names by people who thought they were helping.
      A lot of people supported the petition, the vast majority are genuine fans, but it is not a foolproof method. We had to take asignificant number out.

  2. Stephen Nicholls

    Very difficult times again.Fan base splitting,a reply from Lemsagan would be helpful and show some affinity to the fan base. North stand now a huge issue and needs an urgent update

    1. Lemsgham doesent have to reply the trust is doing all he needs in helping devide and conquer the fanbase without him getting his hands dirty

      1. Tracy Wright

        It is a fair comment that both supporter groups should make note of. Interesting the the club published the 2019/20 accounts whilst this is ongoing. We are a divided fanbase. which is very sad

  3. Martin

    Just sitting in on these meetings is not enough. To have credibility challenges must be made about how the club is being run. 3000 fans not happy with the owner must be addressed in detail. The club must be challenged to communicate with the fans. This is not good enough.

  4. RSB

    Dear foundation, You are completely out of step with the majority of the oldham fan base. Not my opinion but a fact backed up with evidence, the 3000 strong petition backed by myself.

    I insist as a member that you convene an extraordinary meeting of the board, and respond positively to this “fan opinion” even if it is just that you commission your own vote from the members.

    1. Tracy Wright

      Thank you. May I ask as a member you email your request to hello@trustoldham.org and I can flag this officially to the OASF board for a response

  5. Wasn’t Abdallah at the board meeting to give his response to the petition signed by 3000 (the majority) fans? It was not PTB’s petition.

    Was the question asked as to what is holding up the opening of the JR stand to fans?

  6. Andrew Bickerdike

    I don’t think PTB should have asked the trust to sign up to that letter personally. It’s an incredibly provocative step and put the trust in an awkward position given their different remit.

    The trust is discredited in the process, which is not in the best interest of the objectives they share.

    PTB know the constraints under which the trust operate and I believe have accepted that them having a seat at the table within the boardroom can be a force for good. They must appreciate that in that context the trust couldn’t sign that letter, nor did they need to.

    PTB was set up to be and do the things the trust cannot. For PTB to expect the trust to basically sign up to their protest is unrealistic and shows a lack of judgment on their part.

    The trust don’t need to sign the letter. Not signing it is not a statement of support for the club. It’s not binary.

    Very poor from PTB and extremely damaging to the collective cause IMO.

  7. Andrew Bickerdike

    However, in the same breath for the trust to allow a club board meeting to proceed without the letter being on the agenda is even more disappointing. The trust don’t need to sign the letter. They do need to acknowledge it and should be demanding that the club recognise it and respond to it though. The trust cannot allow the club to brush this under the carpet and show utter contempt for fans in the process. What are the trust doing to get the club to acknowledge the letter and respond?

    1. Tracy Wright

      Hi Andy. Good practice usually means the company secretary calls the meeting (14 days) before and any agenda items go on 7 days before the meeting itself. I can only go off what PTB reported that they handed the petition over the day before the meeting and OASF were not privy to the promises made between both. We also have to be mindful that PTB gave a deadline for the owner to respond which was after the meeting date. So that needed to lapse too and it has. As this was PTB work, we would not have gotten involved again until asked and maybe we expected a meeting to discuss as sometimes it is better to talk than put things in writting. It has just not happened that way this time. thanks

  8. Andrew Bickerdike

    Doesn’t wash that Tracy. 3000 people signed a letter asking the owner to sell. The trust has barely acknowledged it and the club has ignored it. And yet the explanation appears to be nothing more than bureaucracy

    1. Tracy Wright

      The timing was wrong Andy. PTB approached us to support it in May. I asked what their strategy was and who would be stepping in if the owner decided to sell. I did not get a satisfactory response. Remember now we are not ready for fan ownership yet ourselves either. The membership had just endorsed working with the club too the (accounts published on Friday has had our input) and appointed a rep to crack on and gather intelligence on those FSA key questions monthly, and now we were to tell him to sell? FSA advice is against this. You were the one passionate about plan B and ours was launched as a strategy in April. We even, we went on the podcast and said if there was any interested parties to contact us. No-one did. We have to remember what happened to Charlton when they told their own to go in 2018 and that EFL was not strong enough to protect them when the next one came along. There is EFL reform ongoing with the Fan lead review but its going to take time. Please remember there are 3,000 people signed a petition, yet there are 2,000 fans who have take out a season ticket and 200 members who want us to work with the club and after just getting back through the front door. It was also reps first meeting and he discussed the strategy, the manifesto and the fiasco of the Joe Royle stand and to get it sorted. IT would have been better to meet, to keep in touch to discuss each others next steps and re-evaluate. sadly this has not happened sometimes its better to talk than email messages.

  9. Andrew Bickerdike

    All for the trust not turning on the owner and instead working on plan b. All energies should go into that for me. And as above, to ask the trust to sign the letter was wrong and unnecessary.

    However, whether the trust agrees with the specific content of the letter or not, the fact that it is being signed by so many is a very strong indicator of the level of dissatisfaction. That the trust would pass this off as insignificant and not worthy of their attention (which is PTB’s claim) is really disappointing and would appear to suggest a trust which is out of touch. Equally disappointing is that PTB have felt the need to out the trust on this.

    It needn’t have come to that

    1. Tracy Wright

      I agree, sometimes its good to talk than typing stuff. Hope you and the family are well Mr B

  10. Andrew Bickerdike

    I would urge PTB and the trust to do just that Tracy. It’s incumbent on both.

    Efforts to find common ground and complementary agendas appear to not be working at the moment which is a real shame. It’s needn’t be them and us. Demand AL sell or back him. As above, these things aren’t binary. I know you know that Tracy.

    Am good thanks Tracy. Hope you guys are too.

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