HUST acknowledge and welcome the statement from Mr Singh today confirming his intentions to sell Hartlepool United Football Club.
Whilst supporters are grateful to Mr Singh for stepping in to save the club in 2018, it is clear that the relationship between Mr Singh and supporters has broken down, and it’s unlikely that this can be turned around. We therefore hope that going forward any valuation of the Club is fair, allowing for an amicable exit and avoids any prolonged processes, accepting that due diligence should be carried out on prospective buyers.
HUST position is clear on future ownership. We do not believe there is broad appetite in the fanbase for the club to be fully fan-owned, however we firmly believe that future ownership should include stronger supporter representation. HUST continue to advocate for this and seek to be included as part of any ownership models that support this. Money saved through the generosity of fans is ring-fenced to help our supporters collectively become minority shareholders in our football club. This approach is proven time and again to create sustainable clubs.
In the meantime we appreciate that the game on Saturday is one where fans will naturally vent frustrations. We must highlight that personal abuse to Mr Singh or indeed anyone else is not acceptable. We remind supporters that many hard working staff members at the football club will be feeling incredibly anxious right now, so we ask that these staff members are treated with the respect and the dignity they deserve and do not bear the brunt of any frustrations.
On one final matter, you may recall from our Easter update that we wrote to Ben Houchen about the development of the Mayoral Development Corporation and any potential impact on Hartlepool United, in particular the Vic. We’re pleased to say Mr Houchen has now responded and you can read the response in full below.
In short he has confirmed that the ground is not on the list of assets planned to transfer to the MDC and that the Asset of Community Value in place on the Vic, (that HUST and the Supporters Association successfully applied for), will remain in place. He does confirm that the land behind the Neale Cooper Stand will be transferred to the MDC and has committed to keeping HUST informed of any plans as they are taken forward. We thank Mr Houchen for his reply and look forward to future dialogue on this point.
It is a time of uncertainty and looking at lessons from clubs in a similar position, it is vital that our fan base unites in the interests of the club, despite emotions running high.
Link to reply from Ben Houchen, Tees Valley Mayor:
200-Hartlepool United Supporters Trust