Hopefully you have had a great summer and are looking forward to getting back to Nethermoor for the new season.
There has been a real buzz behind the scenes here with lots of hard work to build a competitive team for the new season as well making plans for the longer-term future of our club.
So, we are excited to share with you a two stage plan to improve Nethermoor. The aim is to improve facilities for players at all levels of our club as well as provide opportunities to hire the facilities here for local community groups, football teams and help raise revenue.
The first step is, as we announced in April, to install a 3G artificial playing surface to replace the grass pitch. In doing so we will have local training facilities for the first team, Academy and Centre of Excellence, and additional income generation for the club.
The second step is to improve the changing facilities as the current ones are cramped, dated, and in need of refurbishment.
So, once the existing 3G pitch is no longer required we can look at developing this site to create a building that will house new changing facilities, disabled toilets, offices, the club shop, a new café and an improved match-day hospitality space.
This work will require substantial investment. Current estimates for all of this development are in the region of £1.75 million. These are essential improvements and we have worked hard on a plan that can cover this through a variety of means – grants, loans, revenue generated through sell on clauses and the increased income from the new pitch.
However, even after exploiting all the funding opportunities available to us, the payback period will be at least five years and may be as long as ten years, as increasing costs including interest rates may impact on the repayment plan.
This means that, while we would love to be able to invest in other ground improvements such as covering the standing terraces (especially as around 70% of our ground is currently uncovered), we just won’t have the money.
However, we have been approached by a small group of fans who have offered to coordinate fundraising for terrace cover at the Railway End of the ground, they have made some tentative enquiries and the ballpark figure for 40 metres of terraced cover is £150,000. They would like to achieve this over one to two years of fundraising.
So, while the club might not be able to directly fund the roof we are delighted to have such fantastic support and will do all we can to facilitate and help this fundraising effort succeed.
So, we have decided to call the campaign Raise The Roof (yes the marketing budget is tight too)!
We hope you will get behind these plans and have tried to answer some of the most obvious questions below.
An event will take place in the coming weeks to show some outline drawings and project plans.
1. What exactly is the fundraising for?
Initially we are looking at the slightly recessed section where we will install a terraced stand with cover, views will be better, and you will stay dry.
2. Why the Railway End, that gets used by opposition fans?
Most of our matches, in the Northern Premier League and National League North, are not segregated, so home fans will have most of the benefit. Once the new building is in place at the car park end this area will be under consideration for future development. At the moment the Railway End has a greater area for increased & improved terracing.
3. Why is this being paid for through crowd funding?
The club have been approached by a group of supporters who wished to run this project alongside the two projects the club is currently committed to and funding. Our grant/loan/revenues would be too stretched to take on this additional project ourselves, however we will be actively supporting the campaign in a variety of ways. The club is committed to the pitch and the building and clearing those debts first.
4. How do I know my donation will be used for this and not the club funds?
A separate bank account will be set up by the fundraisers, with two signatories which will not be any members of the club.
5. How can I donate?
A Crowdfunder site will be set up in the coming weeks with BACs transfer also available soon.
6. How will the money be raised?
The group are open to any suggestions which can be made at the meeting. So far the following have been considered:
- A Beer Festival
- Small Change Barrels in the ground
- Guest speaker nights
Any other ideas from fans to help fundraise are welcome.