The day in 2002 when BU said ‘let’s have a new stadium’

Sunday, 12 January 2020 | In Focus, Heritage

These are extracts from a BU statement in January 2002 when BU began to take control of the club and negotiate for a new stadium.  
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BIAS (Brentford Independent Association of Supporters) called an “Emergency Meeting” to discuss the future of Brentford Football Club in the hall at the Princess Royal in Brentford on Monday 28 January 2002. John McGlashan, the Chairman of Bees United, made the following statement:

“Some of you have been asking what we’ve been doing recently, I hope that what you hear tonight will demonstrate that although we do not appear to have been particularly active over the last three months, we have in fact been very busy.When BIAS invited me to speak at tonight’s meeting they thought it would be a good opportunity for us to explain the role of Bees United and explain why you should all be members and help us to raise money. For the benefit of those here that don’t know, we have a number of objectives; the main ones being to secure a stake in Brentford FC (therefore we need to raise money) and to have at least one supporter elected to the board of the football club.

I hope what I tell you over the next few minutes will be of interest to you:

1. Ron Noades has offered me, as Chairman of Bees United, an immediate place on the board of directors.

2. Bees United will as of now, take the lead in negotiating with the Council for a new stadium and the redevelopment of Griffin Park.

3. Altonwood (the majority shareholders of Brentford FC and Griffin Park Stadium) have committed to entering into an agreement which will transfer their entire shareholding to Bees United. Or, to put it another way the supporters of Brentford FC will own a majority shareholding in the club. There are of course some conditions attached, but they are not meant to be obstructive and should not be seen as “get out” clauses for either party. There is a will on both sides to carry this forward and for the club to be owned by its supporters and the community in which it operates.

4. As things stand at present the club will continue to play at Griffin Park, but there is a possibility we may share a ground with another club in the future. I would like to stress however, that any ground share agreement will be a short term arrangement and no decision will be made before the planning application for Griffin Park has been approved by Hounslow Council. And finally, we will only enter into a ground share agreement if we believe it is in the long term interests of the football club.

The financial position that our club finds itself in (without understating its seriousness) is “somewhat uncomfortable” and many, many people have been asking many, many questions. Any resentment over how we got here should not be allowed to hamper our future aspirations, what’s done is done and it’s now time to put it behind us. I appeal to every single one of you here to support Bees United in its quest to bring stability and success to Brentford Football Club.”