For whom the bell tolls

“Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it”

(George Santayana)


Allow me to summarise briefly. The Panel of Takeovers and Mergers ruled that the current custodians of our club did not act properly in their acquisition of same, determining they had acted as a concert party and consequently, having control of 30% of the business were thus compelled to make an offer to investors for the remaining shares.

This was denied by Dave King who took the decision to the Court of Session where his legal argument was rejected by Lord Bannatyne. The Advocate for the takeover Panel highlighted during the hearing an e-mail from George Letham to Dave King which cautioned King about the consequences of exceeding the 30% benchmark. These warnings clearly went unheeded.

Subsequently King was ordered to make an £11 million offer to the Club’s remaining shareholders despite the fact  King’s lawyer argued that his client could not afford to make such an offer.

If alarm bells are not sounding amongst our support – they certainly should be.

When Laura Fawkes, a Director of Club 1872, challenged Dave King at the 2017 AGM with regard to the recruitment of a replacement manager, the timescales as well as apparent failure to put in place previous assurances given with regard to succession planning, Dave King responded as follows:

“As far as the manager, I don’t accept the comment you’ve made. It’s difficult to put a time limit on it. The issue with Pedro was not one of succession planning, there’s maybe a perception that Pedro was doomed to failure. It wasn’t my view, I don’t think it was the board’s view, we continued to back Pedro. Ultimately results speak for themselves and having taken action we were extremely aware that this is going to be a 3 year appointment. We have got to be a careful we don’t let adverse results distract us from the process and I’m personally happy that we have taken the correct amount of time.”

After 68 days we had still failed to appoint a new manager and eventually installed the youth coach Graham Murty, as temporary manager. That remains the status quo at the time of writing.

Our club is one home defeat away from our worst ever series of home performances on record. In terms of assessment of our club’s progress, rebuilding and vision to reclaim the top spot in domestic football, it serves as more of an indictment than a positive indicator of continuous and steady improvement.

I would hope by now the alarm bells are loud enough to suggest a major headache is imminent.

Any honeymoon period which the current board deserved is now at an end. It is fine being beholden to them for rescuing us but they need to be judged by the job they are doing now and if that is deemed unsatisfactory or below standard then criticism should be forthcoming.

Not silence.