UpTheSaddlers Forum

Walsall FC - My View - The Response to the letter


Leave it with me


“Cashing out” the pension would mean selling the assets from the fund, which for us would be the freehold land. There will no doubt be lots of other assets swilling around in there as well, mainly purchased from the rent revenue.

Considering he has been taking £400k rent a year or so for over 25 years, much of which will have been reinvested, in other assets, I imagine that the capital value of the pension fund will be eye watering. Maybe another question to ask?

I’m assuming that he/his brother are drawing an annual income from the fund which I imagine not be impacting the capital value at all.


Remember his classic line

“I’ve never taken a penny out of this football club”

Or something similar. I’m still angry now.


The complexities of how it’s structure, and what money he draws down from it isn’t public knowledge.

As you say - the assets, and possibly some of the rent that it’s acquired over the years probably still sits in the pot. It will be a huge amount, all made to the detriment of the club.

He must have a plan on when he will cash in the pension (and thus offload the assets). Or will he pass it on to his family? As supporters, I think we have a right to know.


In comparison to how our club ‘actively engage’ with supporters. Just take a listen to Sunderland’s new Chairman and how he is engaging supporters.

Just skip to any part of that podcast and you’ll hear him talking honestly on a whole range of subjects, answering supporters’ questions and on more than one occasion saying ‘this is the fans’ club.’ I know Sunderland are a big club, but that hasn’t stopped the man at the very top ensuring that the supporters actually feel involved with their club.

It just makes that response from Stefan look even more embarrassing…


My view is that he will pass it on as now unless he is forced out (ie the golden laying goose is killed).
Under current tax law a SIPP is one of the few assets that does not attract inheritance tax. If he sold the freehold and then passed on the proceeds to his family in his will then they would be subject to IT rules.

For me, the thought that he/his family will hand over multiple millions to the club after all this time is fanciful.


Predictable and frustrating…

In any other business scenario it would be a dying or dead entity. The club actually deserves to fail and it hurts me to say that…

Dated, out of touch, self-served, lacking in any appreciation of the paying customer (and we are customers regardless of what anyone in the club says,) and lacking in any ambition…

Lipservice paid again…


Sorry but beg to differ it is a self invested pension fund
He has no problem drawing down on it to suit himself, I’e digital advertising boards, improvements to the family stand, etc the list is endless,
He draws down on it and loans the money to club to implement such things, club then have to pay this back via Suffolk life, and revenue from such things as in regard to future income isnot ire nvested back into club
And by doing such he has a valid reason to put rent up, so again only one winner
So you see just as he does with club he dictates to Suffolk life. And as I’ve always argued. No valid reason why he couldn’t implement a rent break, as he calls the shots it’s only his own greed as to why it,s not done


Its a bit like that piece of paper Neville Chamberlain brought back from Munich in 1939

The only real use for it is to print it, cut it into little squares and put on a nail in the Venue annexe toilets to wipe the p**s off your shoes


I agree with your points in response…this will be a long journey and we are only at the start.


What really frustrates me is the consistent ‘We are open to ideas’. At the end of the day the directors are responsible for leading and implementing changes to drive the club forward, I would welcome it being a joint decision with us the fans/customers however why do they basically insist it is up with us to come up with the solutions? After all are they not the ones paid to do exactly that?!


Sorry, I’ve just thought about something in that ■■■■■■■ letter. I keep finding new ways to be angry with it:

“To continue to give every penny available to the Team Manager in his “Playing Budget””

Hold on, that’s the point of a ■■■■■■■ budget. You don’t get commended for saying to Keates “Here’s your pot for wages for the year” and then giving him every penny of it. That’s a ■■■■■■■ given.

The point is it’s not big enough in the first place you ■■■■■■■ ■■■■■■!


Exactly, as its also their role to source other investment into the club if individuals themselves don’t have those financial resources.


Personally I have found Gamble generally receptive to ideas but, when it gets passed on to Daniel Clarke (or others) there is radio silence and nothing gets done. So, either Gamble should make it his job to ensure things are followed up and/or those staff should be considered to not be doing their job. Just a simple response from someone like Daniel would make a huge difference to supporter perception.

An interesting example is that Gamble says ‘you should have sent this to Daniel Clarke’ but that group sat on their hands until Gamble returned.


What you are describing DH are investments being made to benefit the asset. Each one will be looked at with a view to making a return. I believe that Bonser is being truthful over this issue. The asset is subject to conditions and constraints which would preclude him from just waiving the rent.
He could legitimately write off his loans, or could withdraw income (subject to tax) from the fund and donate it to the club if he wanted to.

The fact that he has not written off the loans speaks volumes to me with respect to his future intentions regarding the freehold.


In fairness my main point was less about how receptive of ideas they are and more about how their general narrative is can someone else come up for ideas for us whilst we sit here and collect our wages. Don’t get me wrong any business should listen to their customers and shape their business depending on market research but for the answer to be what ideas do you have about how we run our business as we are all out of them frankly is at the very least disappointing.


■■■■ ■■■■■■ ■■■■ the ■■■■■ ■■■■ and gamble ■■■■ ■■■■■■■ ■■■■■■ ■■■■. The ■■■■■■■ ■■■■■■ ■■■■ Bonser is a ■■■■■■■ ■■■■ ■■■■ ■■■■. ■■■■■.


Has anyone seen the new ‘Fan Zone’ unveiled by the club. Wow. :joy:


Stop overheating the swear filter, the site will collapse.


As well as @RobHarv3y’s first letter to the club was the response to this needs to be as dismissive as theirs. No “With all due respect” because I don’t respect them. All pretence of discussion and civility needs to be dropped.

They haven’t answered the points and they need to be told that.

The Ticket Pricing is not acceptable to begin with never mind tacking an extra 50p on every year.

The budget should be given to the manager, don’t be patting yourself on the back over that.

There is no such thing as a category A game in this division and it’s a bloody insult to our intelligence to suggest there is. We have to watch this crap every week.

We shouldn’t need to write to them to point out there is ■■■■ all over the floor and the catering facilities have been poor for years.

Nothing changes at the fan focus meetings

No we won’t write to your lackey who won’t do anything with it.

Again I’m not criticising the first letter at all. It was a top job.