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  1. #1

    Goldstone secret history


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    It's generally accepted we keep losing managers because we have no stadium. But there is another aspect to the loss of the Goldstone that has still not been examined closely enough. It is hidden away in the files of the now superseded Hove Council Planning and Development Committee, who approved the planning application that allowed Chartwell to acquire the ground. One would expect to discover here a tale of sweeteners being paid to Tory councillors in cahoots with their chums in the property business. But, in this case, a quite different story emerges. The minutes of the meetings of this committee reveal there were in fact three attempts to obtain planning permission on the Goldstone Ground, and surprisingly they all predate Archer's chairmanship of the club and Belotti's appointment as Chief Executive. It appears that, from 1992 onwards, before Archer's and Belotti's involvement, another faction of 'Albion supporters' inside Hove Council were pressing for retail planning permission to be granted in order to raise the value of the ground, and thus reassure the club's creditors. Who were these supporters ?

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    • #2
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      I think we should be told.
    • #3
      Broad Blue & White stripe perseus's Avatar
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      Have you gotta mortgage?

      If you get Planning Permission to build a supermarket in yer back garden, it ups the value of your property, which means they (bankers) will let you go on a spending spree. You don't have to build the supermarket or even intend to. It is not even really sinister.

      Borrow your way out of debt, and then you die. But companies and football clubs have to be killed.


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    • #4

      Re: Goldstone secret history


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      Originally posted by triptolemus
      It's generally accepted we keep losing managers because we have no stadium. But there is another aspect to the loss of the Goldstone that has still not been examined closely enough. It is hidden away in the files of the now superseded Hove Council Planning and Development Committee, who approved the planning application that allowed Chartwell to acquire the ground. One would expect to discover here a tale of sweeteners being paid to Tory councillors in cahoots with their chums in the property business. But, in this case, a quite different story emerges. The minutes of the meetings of this committee reveal there were in fact three attempts to obtain planning permission on the Goldstone Ground, and surprisingly they all predate Archer's chairmanship of the club and Belotti's appointment as Chief Executive. It appears that, from 1992 onwards, before Archer's and Belotti's involvement, another faction of 'Albion supporters' inside Hove Council were pressing for retail planning permission to be granted in order to raise the value of the ground, and thus reassure the club's creditors. Who were these supporters ?
      Ivor Caplin was 1 of them (although I hasten to add that I disassociate myself from your remarks about any sweeteners). Caplin's initial support for the Goldstone redevelopment planning applications is no secret and is documented by The Argus. The idea was to increase the value of the Goldstone so the club could pay off urgent debts (to the taxman etc). Later, Archer and Stanley bought out the other board members and we all got shafted.
      Last edited by Albionite83; 07-10-2003 at 18:26.
    • #5
      On fire Lord Bracknell's Avatar
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      There's nothing very secret about any of this. The Supporters' Club was actively lobbying Hove Borough Council to give Outline Planning Permission for the redevelopment of the Goldstone Ground. Ivor Caplin was supporting them.

      But read on ...

      The reason for this was NOT to leave the Albion homeless. The Club was in debt and facing bankruptcy. It needed to borrow money and it needed to have a more valuable asset than a football stadium to use as collateral. With outline planning permission for a retail development on the site, that asset would have enabled more loan funding to be secured. Hove Borough Council were being invited to make it a condition that no construction should start until the Club had a new ground. So this plan wasn't about selling the Club down the river.

      Despite heavy lobbying by the football club, supporters and the Labour group, the Tory ruling group on Hove Borough Council threw out the planning application, mainly because there was counter-lobbying by Hove traders who didn't want to see major competitors coming into town and taking the profits out of their pockets.

      A murky bit of history, if you care to look at it that way - but the failure of this plan was one of the reasons that the door was opened to Stanley and Archer.

      With hindsight, we might care to debate whether we would really have been better off if planning consent had been given then (or whether it was a naive plan that would have ended in bankruptcy anyway).
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      What if there were no hypothetical questions?
    • #6
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      I don't really understand football club finances very well, but as a club are we in thee red or the black at the moment?

      I think we must be in debt, but then again wasn't the £7 million from the sale left in the club because ******** and Wankalotti got caught out removing the clause.

      The thing that sticks in my throat is that Chartwell sold the land on a year later for £25 million (I think). Imagine if we had had that kind of clout behind us. We'd have moved back to Falmer rather than Withdean!
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    • #7
      Members Garry Nelson's Left Foot's Avatar
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      Originally posted by Lord Bracknell
      There's nothing very secret about any of this.
      Its a great thread title though. Certainly better than all the coppell one's.
    • #8
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      A Pandoras box really.....with hindsight its easy to say that its OK getting planning permission as long as you have no intention of exercising it, but all it then takes is one greedy fecker, ie Archer, and those grand intentions go out of the window.....

      To me the worst part of this scandal is why the whole site was sold on to Abbey Life only a year later for three times the amount originally paid ?

      If the club was going to be screwed over, why the hell did they do it so cheaply ?
    • #9
      On fire Lord Bracknell's Avatar
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      Originally posted by Albion Rob
      I don't really understand football club finances very well, but as a club are we in the red or the black at the moment?
      I would guess that we are losing money at the moment - mainly because of the occupancy costs of Withdean. But the prospects look good for Falmer and this keeps the long-term financial prospects rosy.

      If Falmer is turned down, we are in deep doo doo.
      не съгласявам се!

      What if there were no hypothetical questions?
    • #10
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      At last!
      Something interesting.

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