2014 has been a rollercoaster ride both on and off the pitch.
On the pitch we went from the feeling of inevitability of relegation from the Football League and the start of a downward spiral which we would have had little control over, to the complete and utter elation of survival (although there was a bit too much man-hugging going on for my liking), to the delight of a free scoring squad who all want to play for the Club, managed by a young bright manager (and his team) and who currently sit proudly at the top of League 2.
Off the pitch, the struggles have been equally testing, with the threat of legal action from Bristol Rovers, FA and Football League enquiries and of course the small matter of paying the bills!
We have also had a change of WWFC Chairman, with the reins being passed from Don Woodward to Andrew Howard (left). I would like to pay tribute to Don for all of his efforts during the two years post takeover, but it became clear that we needed somebody to drive the Commercial side of the Football Club, and Andrew’s experience with running Beechdean Ice Cream and the Beechdean Racing team was tailor made for this role. It should be stressed that Andrew is operating on a voluntary basis, and putting in many more hours than he envisaged, but the changes he is making are starting to bear fruit, and the theory of “One Wycombe” is starting to become a reality.
Despite the optimism that surrounds Adams Park at the moment, our financial situation is still of great concern. The proposed share issue has been fraught with complications, but we now have HMRC approval for the scheme, with one proviso, which we hope to resolve shortly. This will allow us to formally launch the scheme in the New Year, and at the same time we will hold a Members’ Meeting to update you on plans for the future. The success of this share scheme is fundamental to the Club remaining Trust owned, as without this cash input, we will be forced to look for outside investment.
In early 2015, we will hold the Trust AGM. There will a total of four directors resigning, but only two likely to stand for re-election. Therefore we will be looking for new blood to join us. The two directors leaving the Trust Board are Reg Rundle (Finance) and Keith Blagbrough (Minutes Secretary). I would like to place on record, my appreciation of their efforts on behalf of the Trust, and wish them well for the future. Following feedback from last year we will be changing the process for the election of directors, allowing the candidates an opportunity to address the AGM or a separate hustings meeting if there are a significant number of candidates.
Finally I would like to thank and pay tribute to the band of volunteers, who have saved our Club thousands of pounds with their efforts, either selling programmes of maintaining the ground.
I am sure 2015 will be as interesting as 2014. I do feel more confident about the future than at any time since we took ownership of the Club. We are well on the way to achieving our target of 55 points, but as we know from last season, we can take nothing for granted.
I hope you and your family have a very happy Christmas and a healthy and successful New Year.