Make It a Million!

January 1, 2000

We are hoping to push the amount raised by the share scheme close to the £1 million mark following a new agreement with the football club’s directors. The project has so far passed the £748,000 mark and was due to end in November. But the board has taken up our offer to extend it for a maximum of another two years. Under the existing agreement shares had been ring-fenced by the board just for the Supporters Club to purchase at £5.50 for two shares. But we have agreed to release those shares as the scheme continues because they would have no longer been ring fenced once the old agreement ended in November. Money from the scheme has been used to help buy several players including Danny Coles.

 Rovers’ chairman Nick Higgs said:

“We are delighted that the scheme will continue to operate for the next two years. It has been a really successful scheme, allowing us to bring in players like Junior Agogo and Andy Rammell who both had such a huge impact at the club. “I would like to say a big thank you to all supporters who have got involved with the scheme up to now. Buying shares in the club allows the fans a say in the running of Bristol Rovers through their elected board representatives, and we are very glad to be keeping this link going for the next few years.” The scheme has also enabled to the Supporters Club to be in the unique position of having two members serving as directors on the football club board. Currently they are Ken Masters and David Brain. The share scheme was launched nearly six years ago when Rovers were bottom of Division One, losing around £20,000 a week and having to repay loans of £2 million it took out to buy the Memorial Stadium. Its money was used to help bring in five players on transfer deadline day in 2003 which stopped the side sliding into the Conference. The £748,000 includes a £55,000 donation made from Supporters Club reserves which have purchased a total of 240,970 shares giving the fans an 8.68 per cent stake in the football club.

Supporters Club chairman Jim Chappell said:

“I’m really pleased that we have been able to negotiate continuance of the scheme with the board. “Several of our members had approached me with the view that they wanted to continue paying-in anyway, regardless as to whether or not it was to end simply because they wanted to carry on making a positive contribution to the football club. “Everyone could see that the scheme was initially directly responsible for keeping Rovers out of the Conference, (thanks to Andy Rammell’s goals), and that subsequent payments have been a major factor in improving our League status, allied of course to the efforts of the current management team backed-up by the Board. “I trust that all the current scheme members will renew their payments in December and that those who have contributed in the past will join a host of potential new members and join us in helping to make Rovers a major force in the Football League.”

David Brain, chairman of the scheme added:

“The scheme has demonstrated a commitment from our fans that is unparalleled throughout football or other sport in this country. It is difficult to assess how important the fans contributions have been but in my view they have kept us in the football league. You only need to look at the growing number of clubs who are in or have been in administration to gauge where Rovers may have been without the magnificent support of a significant number of Gasheads. “I am delighted this is going to continue for a further two years and would urge fans to continue to support the scheme to help the club whilst the rebuilding of the Memorial Stadium takes place and our fans get the ground they deserve. We now have two full directors on the board and I am not aware of any other club with that level of representation from fans. We are currently considering how we can reward those fans who continue to support the share scheme although we have already decided that we will be holding a draw for a share scheme member to win the Black Arab shirt worn by Andy Rammell.”

The scheme is made up of:

Bronze Option

£2.50 per week by standing order (£10.83 per month) for 36 months.

Silver Option

£5 per week by standing order (£21.67 per month) for 36 months.

Gold Option

£10 per week by standing order (£43.34 per month) for 36 months.

Platinum Option

£1,000 per year donation or by standing order (£83.34 per month) for 36 months.

Corporate Option

£1,000 per year donation or by standing order (£83.34 per month) for 36 months.

There are a various advantages in being a member including discounts at our shops and on season ticket prices, also priority for all-ticket matches. For details of the scheme contact Clare McDonagh at Pirate Leisure on (0117) 952 4001.

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