The Dons Trust Board (DTB) held its regular monthly meeting at the Cherry Red Records Stadium on Thursday 12 October 2017. Ahead of publication of the redacted minutes, this article summarises the main points that were discussed.
The meeting was attended by DTB members Matthew Breach, Mark Davis, Roger Evans, Colin Dipple, Tim Hillyer, Sean McLaughlin, Nigel Higgs, Charles Williams; DT Secretariat members Tom Brown and Andrew Howell; and FCB members/consultants Erik Samuelson, David Charles, Andrew Williams and Dan Norris (via telephone). Apologies were received from David Growns and Jane Lonsdale.
The first section of the meeting was dedicated to an in depth review of the status of the various legal documents required to finalise the planning permission and complete the deals necessary to allow work to start on clearing the Greyhound Stadium site. Dan Norris, a partner at Hogan Lovells who is acting on behalf of the Club, summarised the position and went through the areas that still needed agreement. Whilst the legal and commercial issues in the documents are steadily being resolved, the involvement of three separate parties (Galliards, the London Borough of Merton and ourselves) and their legal teams is contributing to the slow headway that is being made. The DTB unanimously approved the courses of action that Dan and Andrew Williams had recommended the Club undertake to try and conclude the deal on terms that are acceptable to us.
After a break (and the departure of Dan, Andrew and David Charles) the DTB worked through the FCB report with Erik. There was a lengthy discussion addressing concerns about the current underperformance of the team. The FCB remain very supportive of Neal Ardley and believe that he is the best person to correct the current problems with performances. A number of actions that have and are being taken to help support Neal and the team were discussed, including the potential for moves in the January transfer window. The DTB supported the FCB’s position and asked to be kept informed if there was anything else that could be done to help the situation.
In the limited time remaining, several issues were quickly reviewed including the response to the EFL “request for our observations” over the Milton Keynes game, future changes to Data Protection legislation, the COO recruitment process and various AoB items. It was agreed that significantly more time will be required to review the Stadium documentation and catch up on items that had to be parked at the meeting, so an additional DTB meeting has been scheduled for October 30th.