Statement – Relationship issues

It’s with much regret that the KHIST board, once again, finds itself in a situation whereby it‘s considered necessary to inform our members of inaccuracies of information posted on social media to the detriment of the Trust’s ongoing efforts to represent supporters interests in OUR football club.

It’s been made clear on previous occasions that, whilst we have had our differences with the Chairman, on several occasions, we are all committed Supporters of Kidderminster Harriers and that our best interests have been served by positively avoiding confrontation. Sometimes, however, it becomes necessary to explain one’s actions

We would draw members’ attention to the minute summary recorded from our board meeting on 18th July and relating to a brief KHFC/KHIST meeting on 22nd May. This followed the KHFC EGM, which had been attended by 3 of our board members (The minutes can still be reviewed on this website):-

“Following the EGM, an ad hoc meeting, requested by Colin Gordon, failed to achieve an agreement on how funds raised by KHIST on behalf of the members/supporters should be expended. The KHIST board has explained the constitution of the Trust and its objectives and, has made it quite clear that funds will not be offered without consideration for our members. It has also been made clear that it’s for the KHIST board to determine how such funds are to be expended and/or reserved. The longstanding disagreement over the re-designation of funds donated specifically for the installation of a passenger lift, once again came to the fore and, it became apparent that progress would not be possible and the meeting was terminated without agreement”.

It should perhaps be made clear that the meeting, had been arranged unexpectedly, and was attended by Colin Gordon and Dave Seddon (for KHFC) and Ian Nash, Dave Williams and Dave Lewis for the Trust. It had been understood that we were to have been offered an ‘olive branch’, with a view to restoring good relations and that was, of course, something we would have welcomed. However, it soon became clear that there was to be no such consideration and that the intention was, once again, to try to impose a relationship, whereby KHIST funds would be passed to the club, on behalf of KHFC supporters, without involvement in decisions regarding their expenditure. That is not what KHIST is all about and we were obliged to dismiss that suggestion out of hand.

The Constitution of the Trust and its founding objectives were briefly explained and, it was made clear to the Chairman that, it is for the KHIST board and NOT the football club, to determine for what purposes limited KHIST funding is to be expended or reserved.

The alleged misuse of KHIST funds donated for the installation of a passenger lift to the Aggborough Suite was again discussed and the question of ‘trust’ was identified as a major issue, with the result that there was an early breakup of the meeting with no agreement being possible.

 

On some specific issues raised on social media, we can confirm:

“The Trust has never given any indication that it is not prepared to fund suitable and affordable projects which will make a real difference, nor have we ever declared that we do not want a relationship with OUR FOOTBALL CLUB.

KHIST has continued to ask questions of the club and respond to the members who put them to us. We do make efforts to provide the link between the Supporters and the club but, in recent times have been subjected to various unwarranted youtube criticisms, which have made communication difficult. That we have been asked to “bury the hatchet” is true but that’s proved to be only possible on the Chairman’s terms and, regretfully, that’s not been acceptable.

Dave Seddon was, indeed, present at the meeting but, his personal contribution was dogmatic and negative.
We were asked how much money was in KHIST bank accounts and declined to offer that information and were then criticised for holding on to monies due to the club, which we refuted.

It was explained that one of the foremost, founding aspirations of the Trust is to reserve funds, set aside for the future security of the club but, were ridiculed for that purpose. However, we have to learn from the mistakes of the past and from our previous involvements in preventing the total demise of the club. We have not, however given any indication that All money collected by the KHIST 2020 lottery is to be set aside for that purpose. It does make sense however, for us to retain long term savings, when funds remain undesignated for other purposes and, we make no apologies for that decision.

We have never even suggested that “not one penny” will go to the club. Indeed all the hard work we do in raising funds is with the intention of supporting OUR club, but the KHIST board, as trustees, have discretion to determine expenditure and are obliged to make sure that this is used for designated purposes and not just lost ‘in a big black hole’.

Mention of the goalden gate lottery was simply in the context that receipts from the KHIST 2020 lottery had not been affected by the club’s participation in ‘goalden gate’.

At no point has the Trust board been invited back onto the club board even in a limited capacity. We have, however, been invited to attend KHFC board meetings, but our involvement would have been much restricted. Having given this some serious consideration, however, we had made the decision that, at present, our independence of the club is the more important consideration and the invitation has therefore, been declined.

The “disgruntled old men” referred to in the Chairman’s letter, object strongly to his insinuations, having together devoted many years of devoted service to the supporters of Kidderminster Harriers Football Club and, been instrumental in much of its success and achievements. We have no ambitions to run the club, which is a ridiculous suggestion, but we do seek to ensure that our club achieves, within its means, and that we still have a club to support in the course of time.

Yes, indeed, we have to move forward …. and we will.

It’s time for our members and other Harriers Supporters to get behind the guys who put so much of their personal time and efforts into the extraordinary work they do, on your behalf. Talk to us by all means …. we are always available …. But, make sure you register as KHIST members, renew your memberships and buy your KHIST 2020 Lottery tickets. That way, you can ensure that KHIST is there when OUR CLUB next needs us.