UpTheSaddlers Forum

Bonser , who wants him gone , and who thinks he should stay


You’re dreaming Larry…:smile:


But again we were operating as a small club .

I understand your point Sid but it’s got to be speculate to accumulate , and there have been business men/women willing to take that risk with other Club’s , but it has to be the " whole " Club


Bonser will never sell the club, in his lifetime the reason being he can’t. Far to many skeletons would come out in relation to the role he played in obtaining it, He was loaning club money for many a year before he ever came on board. And it was a master plan carefully planned and executed to perfection
The davinmanor and den Glen involvement is well documented, And played a major part in the corrupt activities that took place
If you ever get chance ask him why the. Financial documents in relation to the club where constantly withheld from Eddie kirk and Irvine brown. Who where looking to buy club But where constantly fobbed of to ensure one mans plan was not scuppered
Ask him why when Walsall council returned the 250 k to club in relation to the ransom strip at fellows park that the freehold of bescot was not purchased , but used to pay of so called loans owed to him
Ask him why the two houses that stood eithier. Side of the track that led to the back of bescot stadium, again owned by club, where allowed to stand empty for years and become in a total state of disrepair, , in order to be used at a later date in a deal with seven Trent , that ensured his pension fund could purchase freehold at a later date
Ask him why a piece of land was purchased I’e the ground stadium is built on. Was purchased without the due diligence checks being performed, which later became the excuse as to why a 1 .8 million overspend ocoured in the building of stadium,
Ask him why Walsall council will have no dealings with him
I could go on the list is endless, but like I say he can’t sell as he wouldn’t want to be around,when the myths he has spent thirty years. Fabricating, are finally exposed as a tissue of lies


I’m a realist R&W,Iwould love it if someone bought the club and did all those things with,but experience tells me that unless you are Elton John at Watford or that bloke at Wigan,it’s not going to happen mate.We’ll just have to sit and wait and hope that when Bonser dies (because he won’t be able to sell the club beforehand) his family either gift the club to the fans(not likely:smile:) or take a loss and sell it cheap to someone who has the clubsand fans interest at heart.


Can only hope that his concerns for his legacy and how he will be remembered will one day outweigh his continuing desire to pocket the rent etc. I don’t see this happening any time soon though. If he did, then to get round the constraints of the Pension Fund he should have a ‘Buy the Land, Get a Football Club for Free’ offer. It would still be an over-priced package even so.
Ps What is the situation about any covenants etc regarding the use of the land?


My fear is, that after his death, his family simply double the rent, call in his loans (over a period) and run the club even more into the ground. Until at such point the club is worthless and semi pro, they therefore sell the land for housing and we are no more.

Bonser won’t sell, it’s too lucrative and there are too many skeletons in his boot room. The only way he would sell is if the offer was large or the protests are so well organised and engaging, that he has no choice. Neither will happen. So we are stuck with the leech.


He needs to go. He’s had his drink out of the club but it is now stagnating to the point of no return. I was looking round the Bescot Bar yesterday, away from the bar area the rest of it is in a shocking state and this just sums the club up. Needs new leadership. Football has moved on so much during the Bonser era but we haven’t.


The lease is ring fenced mate as long as wfc can pay the rent each year they can never be evicted. And it can only go up by the rpi each year
95 years with an option of a further 25 so no chance of houses ever being built up there, Not that it’s anything to look forward to as like myself and others have said the football side only exists as a vehicle to meet the rent obligation, nothing more


After the original ‘hook’ of watching Walsall during the early 90’s and through to the 00’s when I went to nearly every game home and away, I drifted after the sale of Dann & Fox but never considered myself a stayaway, it was more a personal thing. I started going again fairly regularly under Smith and the last 2 years I’ve been taking my step son to 10/15 games a season.

I never considered myself a staunch Bonser critic until the last two years, when to be quite frank the geezer has been taking the absolute ■■■■. The lack of care, love and professionalism in the way the club operates and the way it treats us supporters is a complete and utter disgrace. The current approach to clearly make it as hard as possible for home fans to gain entrance and to cream off a large away following is the pits. Anyone see the queues to get in on Boxing day - 3 turnstiles open for 3700 home fans?!

They lost my step son to Blues because they cant be bothered and now they have lost me. How dare they charge any supporter of any age more than our local rivals in higher divisions. How ■■■■■■■ dare they! Charging more for such a impressionable age is insanity.

Anyone saying he should stay because we are small club need to give their heads a good, solid wobble. We are small because of the 1990’s business model, with offers and initiatives that have not worked since then. Other clubs have ridden the footballing business wave with a professional marketing department and have gone on to triple their home support while we have stagnated; now we are regressing.

Not only all of the above but he is making it impossible for himself to make a exit strategy, which means the writing is on the wall.


spot on mate :+1:


I come from a large family of Walsall supporters and none of them go to home games any longer. My brother still goes to several away games but hasn’t been near Bescot for over 20 years because of Jeff. My dad boycotts home games along with cousins and any of my Walsall supporting friends. I had an early bird season ticket a couple of years ago but by the time the season started the team was unrecognisable from the one when I purchased the ticket and the football was awful. That was the final straw for me, I didn’t go at all last season apart from for the protest at the Oxford game, I couldn’t make the following protest because of work. I went to the last home game of the season because I genuinely believed it would be our last game at that level for a long time and we were totally outplayed for 80 minutes by a team that were as good as down. I do want to support keates because he is a legend but with Jeff at the helm the football club is dying and fan base is shrinking. Clearly him buying the freehold for himself and not the club has been an incredible investment for him but a disaster for the football club, and what preceeded this when we moved grounds will probably never be fully disclosed.


Does someone organise a proper protest ? , and i mean a proper protest not just 150 supporters turning up .

It look’s like when Bonser gets wind of these sort of things something seems to happen to pacify us , what that might be if there was a big enough turnout , and well organised …


I hope his legacy matters to him. If he were to make a grand gesture now, I think that would tip the story of his tenure into marginally positive territory.

At the moment I see his time split between the generally positive pre Merson era and the stagnation and retrograde post Merson era. Pre Merson he made some really astute managerial hires and got us well ahead of the lower league curve in terms of how the club was ran and how we used Paul Taylor to find and sign overseas talent.

Unfortunately the ego trip that was the Merson managerial era was the tipping point. Since then his appointments have been patchy to say the least and the suspicion/paranoia he holds the fan base in manifests itself in every dirty, dusty, unloved part of the club and Stadium.

And the grand gesture of his departure doesn’t need to be that grand either. He and his family will have done very nicely out of Walsall FC and on balance we’ve had some decent times together.

But please Jeff. Now is the time. Build an exit strategy, tell us about it and step downwith a bit of dignity and with history telling a balanced story. In your twighlight years just enjoy watching Walsall as a fan again without being the pariah and general pantomime villain.


The problem with protests is they always fracture in to lots of factions all with their own ideas and disagreeing on what the aims are/should be.


Agree with you…time for a change.It cannot come too soon for me and I think that JB did a good job at first. I wouldn’t call him a saviour but when we were struggling for cash in the early nineties he certainly helped to get the Club on a secure footing. The Commercial side enabled us the build the teams so well managed by Nicholl,Graydon and Lee and we were a club on the up but the last decade has been really disappointing. A fair few bad decisions but the big problems for me are lack of communication, lack of a strategy to rebuild the team and the poor ticketing policies.


I genuinely believe the only way to get change is to vote with your feet, it is happening, season on season attendances are dropping but every time there is a protest he sacks the manager and things go back to the status quo. If enough people didn’t buy season tickets then maybe that would get a reaction.


Know what you mean Sandysaddler , it’s like a very slow death …


But why was the club in such a poor financial state in the early 90’s? The income generated from the sale of Fellows Park should have set the football club up for the next generation, that’s if the situation had been managed by people who had the club’s best interests at heart rather than their own. Who were the winners out of the move and the issues that “arose” out of it? GMI construction, Severn Trent Property LTD, the Bonsers?
Its classic problem, reaction, solution. Create the problem and then become the solution, while, all the time eying the long term gain that the created situation facilitates.

Just take time to read the club’s own official version of the move, its there on the official site in all its glory. Bonser involved from 1988 onwards, “advising”!! Or as I see it steering the good ship Walsall FC into the financial slaughterhouse.

Just take the bit about Severn Trent property suddenly changing their stance on selling the freehold, and demanding it be leasehold. Its too ridiculous for words!! It was a worthless, useless piece of brownfield that had stood derelict for 20 odd years, that needed well over a million pounds spending on it just to make it fit to build on, AND WE PAID THE COST! Just common sense alone says at this point, " ok STP, you want to retain ownership of the land, YOU PAY, its your land". Anyone acting in the best interests of Walsall FC at this point would have told STP where to stick their terms. But nobody was, it was a carve up, plain and simple, and that’s how the club ended up in the financial mess of the early 90’s.


Mr bonser was involved with the club from as early as 1982 howether he was only hovering on the fringes at that time, I used to get invited by him at that time as a guest of his, The way he was treated by the board of directors at that time it was clear he was a far bigger player up there than he ever let on, little did I know at that time what his master plan entailed, and people should also remember the role Barry blower and Roy Whalley played in that move , they to have a hell of a lot to answer for and both played a key role in ensuring his grand scheme came to fruition , yet they apear to have both quietly walked away from it, and no doubt handsomely rewarded into the bargain
But history is history and we can’t change it, but I am a firm believer that as fans we can certainly change the future of our club for the better. But only if everyone is prepared to challenge his dictatorship, but alas to many have swallowed his I’m your saviour nonsense and are more than prepared to sit by and watch the club stagnate to the point of no return,


If you read the book The birth of the Saddlers by Mike Bradbury you will see that we struggled financially and for support from the town right from the start. So to now be in the situation we are in should be no surprise. Unless somebody makes an offer that reunites club and ground that is in JB’s best interests, then I fear we will eventually have no club left to support.