DUEL MORALITY! F.A.O. G.M.S.T. CHAIRMAN ALLAN FEENEY.

At the recent A.G.M. of the Greenock Morton Supporters’ Trust a motion to convene an S.G.M. to discuss ‘G.M.S.T. v Gallacher’ was proposed by Board member Cllr. McEleny, seconded by Trust member Eric Marshall and duly ‘minuted’.

Constitutionally defined fiduciary duty of care obliges the committee to ‘obey the wishes’ of the membership at all times. Unless G.M.S.T. v Gallacher is ratified by the membership the action becomes void.

That is the law of the land and so Mortonjag has been confused by the contents of a recent letter sent to the membership (which includes Mrs. Mortonjag) by new Trust Chairman Allan Feeney. In particular the following appears somewhat contentious:

‘WE HAVE HAD LEGAL ADVICE THAT SUCH A MEETING WOULD BE INAPPROPRIATE AS WE WOULD BE DISCUSSING MATTERS RELATING TO THE CASE WHICH ARE NOT REALLY FOR THE SEMI-PUBLIC FORUM THAT A GENERAL MEETING INEVITABLY IS‘.

Not really for a ‘semi-public forum’ Mr. Feeney? What then will the sheriff make of the now disappeared OFFICIAL Trust forum of 2011 which was open to members and non- members alike? Mortonjag has retained a full copy, and here is an excerpt in which intricate details of the court action are openly discussed:

 Tonsilitis  Nov 6 2011, 11:25 PM

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QUOTE(Scotsguy40 @ Nov 6 2011, 10:44 PM) 

The thing here is trust if you pardon the pun. What credibility fellow supporters have for the Trust will determine what support you get from the rank and file fan.
Some of we ‘neutral’ fans who are loan note holders sat back and read what was being slung about on this very forum and were aghast at the behaviour of individuals on the Board. 
This could have been dealt with swiftly and in house without it being slung over an internet forum. So what has changed exactly?

This man talks sense!!
Transparency. 
This is the perfect forum to let us know the true detail of what has gone on. What a perfect opportunity for the GMST to apologise for its handling of the whole affair.
We’ve read the innuendo from the third party, lets hear your side. 
What a perfect opportunity to put it to bed, sell your future plans and regain confidence in GMST.
I am going to apologise to fans reading this thread as I should not rise to the bait and in that you were correct Andy. I am, however, human and there does come a point when even trust chairmen lose the rag! 

I will not and nobody at the trust is going to apologise for trying to recover money we believe was owed to us, nor am I going to apologise for things that went on on this board before all bar one of us who are on the trust board were members of the trust board. Like many, I think that the whole trial by message board saga was wrong but neither I nor any of the current board had anything to do with that. 

As for transparency, we have been engaged in a court case and we have not been prepared to discuss the detail of it on a public forum. It’s called behaving professionally. We promised we would report to members and are holding an SGM to which loan note holders are invited, partly for that purpose given that the case is more or less over. That last statement is not arrogance, merely fact!

I want to move things on now and I am hoping that our actions and deeds will demonstrate pursuit of our core objectives and that what we are about is in the interests of all Morton fans. I realise that some people have to be won over and some never will be – you can’t please all of the people all of the time and all that – but if people do not want to hear what we have to say, it will not be for want of trying on our part!

 cmdc  Nov 8 2011, 08:32 AM

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Rasta, the comment that was “throwaway rubbish” was a personal and sweeping attack on every board member by a guy who has never or barely ever met the board. Criticism is part and parcel of this type of thing, and I’ve tried to respond to it on this and other threads, but stuff like that is not really criticism. 

On the Stars thing: we are NOT pursuing an action as such; we’ve had the case sisted and will resist any attempt to revive it. If we are able to draw a line here we’ll call an SGM to give account for the whole saga to members and loan note holders alike.

 cmdc  Nov 8 2011, 12:10 PM

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QUOTE(Alibi @ Nov 8 2011, 11:29 AM) 

I thought the case was an open and shut matter. 

I’ve never said that, or anything like it.

Why has it been mothballed?

We’ll explain this at the SGM.

What are the total costs to the Trust to date?

We’ll set this out at the SGM. In short: less than four figures.

Surely the case has to be allowed to proceed to ensure that justice is done? If money has been invested in taking the case this far, what has caused the Trust to do an emergency stop? 

Again, this is for the SGM. In short: because, in our view, the defender lacked the locus to defend the action. Therefore, in our view, the case CANNOT proceed because it is (for reasons that were unknown at the time of raising the action) legally incompetent to pursue it.

It was stated further back on the thread that the defendant has actually put up the money that is sought – that doesn’t sound like the action of someone who knows he is in the wrong, which is a bit worrying. 

It’s hard to answer that without going to the substance of the case, so – again – I’ll leave it for the SGM.

As a loan note holder who has basically been told that it’s not a loan, it’s a donation unless you can prove malnutrition,

You’ve been told!? Come on…you knew fine well the terms of the loan note when you entered it. It’s not like we’ve suddenly moved the goalposts. It IS a loan, and not a donation, because – for example – in the event of the Trust ceasing to trade, you have an etitlement to have your money returned. If it was a donation, you would have no right over the money at all.

 cmdc  Nov 8 2011, 01:44 PM

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QUOTE(Alibi @ Nov 8 2011, 01:16 PM) 

Seems to me that someone who is able to put money on the table before a judgement has been made must be in a position to say “bring it on” and must also be fairly confident of winning. The inference I would draw is that someone is maybe thinking that the Trust has been put in an exposed position financially and is trying to limit the damage.

I do find it hard to credit that something that has gone on this long has only accrued a legal bill of less than four figures for either side. If I as much as say good morning to my solicitor it costs me £200.

In bold – look, I can’t answer that without going into the substance of the case and I’m not prepared to do that on a public forum. 

Rhubarb Mess: this isn’t us getting out by the back door, it’s us following the law as we see it. I wouldn’t think a court is the best place for us to ignore the law and plough on regardless!

In italics – You might find that hard to believe, but that is the position and we can account for that at the SGM. 

This post has been edited by cmdc: Nov 8 2011, 01:47 PM

 cmdc  Nov 8 2011, 02:38 PM

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QUOTE(chrissiboi @ Nov 8 2011, 02:23 PM) 

I would have thought there is more than money at stake here. I would have thought since the new board of the Trust continued to persue this case their credibility is up for debate.

It doesn’t matter what is at stake if the law doesn’t allow us to pursue the claim through the court. If we do end up in a full hearing the case isn’t about credibility, it’s about trying to win an award from the court. Nothing more, nothing less. Any issue of credibility will need to be dealt with separately after the case is finally resolved one way or the other.

The reason for the sist and you say the Trust would be unable to recover any monies owed. 

Not really, but once again I couldn’t discuss that without going into the substance of the case so I’ll need to save it for the SGM.

Was this a situation you as in the Trust should have been aware of earlier ? Was it an oversight from the previous administration ? 

No oversight, no. However, I can’t say much more about that without going into the substance of the case, so I’ll save it for the SGM.

So what happens if the court allow the case to come back into the court calendar what then?

Then we’ll put our case to the court.

 Tonsilitis  Nov 8 2011, 05:14 PM

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QUOTE(Rhubarb Mess @ Nov 8 2011, 04:29 PM) 

It doesn’t matter what is at stake if the law doesn’t allow us to pursue the claim through the court. If we do end up in a full hearing the case isn’t about credibility, it’s about trying to win an award from the court. Nothing more, nothing less. Any issue of credibility will need to be dealt with separately after the case is finally resolved one way or the other.

The below statement has appeared on ‘the blog’. Seems to me this lawyer has a difference of opinion.

As I have often advised in recent months, ignore what the Trust is telling the members. They consistently show that they either do not understand what is happening or are lying.’

IF it goes ahead and IF you lose how much will it cost the trust?? Losers in these usually pick up the tab, does the trust have some sort of exemption from the norm or are you going to use the sist and the ignorance of the bond to try and aportion blame elsewhere if you drop it?

It won’t work.
2 men and a congratulatory dug!! The dug being the one with the pertinent barks.
The case will be over shortly. The summary on the blog is, as usual, riddled with both factual and legal inaccuracies as will become clear to everyone shortly. It is so wrong, that I seriously doubt if the advice it purports to interpret actually came from the firm of lawyers in question. 

I don’t intend to reply further on this thread as there is nothing more to say and nothing that will change the opinion of those who prefer to believe something else

 cmdc  Nov 8 2011, 05:58 PM

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QUOTE(Rhubarb Mess @ Nov 8 2011, 05:23 PM) 

There is only one conclusion that will keep your head above water and thats going through to full hearing. Any attempt to use the law to get this dropped, while the defendant has lodged a bond, will be indefensible no matter what way its twisted.

Well, if the case is dropped it is because THE COURT agrees with our interpretation of the law. It doesn’t make sense, just because a bond might be put in place, that we should ask the court to ignore (our understanding of) the law and proceed. Why would a court ignore the law just so the Trust can save face? For one, if we won they could simply argue that the legal action was incompetent and therefore the bond is worthless.

Now, it is right that the other side has a different interpretation of the law, but we’ve consulted lawyers and insolvency practitioners and are comfortable with the position as it stands.

On your earlier post re: costs – the small claim court restricts the maximum award of costs, so if the worst came to the worst and the case went to a full hearing in which the Trust lost on all the relevant points the costs would be restricted to around £300-500.

 Tonsilitis  Nov 10 2011, 09:42 AM

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QUOTE(TONofmemories @ Nov 10 2011, 08:49 AM) 

Is the real reason your doing all of this because you know your ” Reputation ” is tarnished and you want to gain some respect back. Just a question, dont shoot me down, your highness !!
Of course I would prefer people not to have a view of me based on my role in trying to sort out a mess, not of my making but which I have approached honestly as anyone who does know anything about what I have done will attest. Does anyone seriously think I would put a forty year career as a chartered accountant at risk over a £2/3000 debt?

Of course I would prefer people not to have a view on me based on the smear, innuendo and downright lies put forward by a person who clearly has mental problems. Does anyone think I like having pictures of me hanging from a tree or having pictures of my house and other personal details published or being called a liar by a man who does not understand the concept of truth!. Regrettably, there is little I can do about that as you cannot win an argument with a madman. 

The real reason I am involved in this is because it’s what the trust is about and we are aiming to get on with life.

I have stated my reasons for this. Maybe you would like to share with us why you have such an intimate knowledge of the detail of the trust case that you can dismiss it as being no case? Are you an accountant? Maybe you have reviewed our figures and can point out where they are wrong? If you can that will be good because it’s not something anyone else has managed so far!

Alternatively, maybe you think we should just have forgot about the whole thing and, if you do, that’s a valid argument made even more valid with the benefit of hindsight. We opted to try to recover money we believed and still believe was/is owed to us. At the time that decision was made, that was a valid option also, more so than doing nothing!

 Tonsilitis  Nov 19 2011, 10:35 AM

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QUOTE(chrissiboi @ Nov 19 2011, 12:44 AM) 

Well if the Trust can happily trot out everything is fine on the good ship GMST why not respond to them.

Your issue is obviously with me as I clearly disagree that any shares in a business that hasn’t made money since …. when you tell me but those loses would not worry any potential buyer or even a supporters buy out.

The trust can’t even sort out the mess of their own doing but we are supposed to put that aside and suddenly they are all successful.
Without wishing to stir the pot, I am intrigued to know why you think we are not sorting out our ” own mess” as you put it. The court case will conclude shortly with little cost to the trust, despite anything you may read on blogs or e-mails from a third party. We have significantly improved relations with the club. We are working to try to get an organisation put together that has genuine credibility as a voice of the fans, entitled to question how the club is run.

Our accounts and other administrative issues are up to date and in order. We communicate with our members on a far more regular basis. We are revamping our communication channels and now include social media in those. Our website will be re-launched shortly and we have a number of ideas to generally improve the fan experience in visiting it. We have a business plan for the next five years in draft which we will release to members in the next few months.

Which mess of our own making are you referring to?

 cmdc  Nov 19 2011, 01:41 PM

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QUOTE(chrissiboi @ Nov 19 2011, 01:20 PM) 

What an open and shut case that will now be dismissed on a technicality that the defender is fighting to overturn.

So there is no chance of this case being called into the court calendar ?

Chrissiboi, with all due respect you know nothing about the substance of the case, or about the decision making behind it, the sist, and any future development. This talk of ‘technicalities’ is uninformed nonsense,

 Tonsilitis  Nov 19 2011, 07:31 PM

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QUOTE(capitanus @ Nov 19 2011, 07:24 PM) 

A Debt for Equity swap is only of use if it removes a debt balance owed by the company. Therefore I agree with both yourself and Jim McColl, if you have assets of £1,000,000 and liabilities of £500,000 then your net worth is £500,000. Anyone that is paying a mortgage or a car loan etc. would be able to understand that.

The big problem for Morton FC is that the Debt for Equity swap didnt clear the debts, as the monies owed by Morton FC to Golden Casket are still there and a concerning millstone around the neck of the club and the club are continuing to make a loss going forward. It is simply unsustainable.

However, 

In saying all that, I was one of very few folk who were voicing concerns about this as early as 2004 and the GMST who had representation on the board didnt seem to do much in the way of putting the brakes on some of the reckless spending and bad decisions by DDFR which have cost us dearly since then. Why are you suddenly voicing concern about this?

Is it a smokescreen to divert everyones attention away from your own troubles?
What troubles are those? If you are referring to the court case, all will become clear in due course but there is a lot of misinformation about what is going on, including the major issue described as a technicality by the ill informed.

As for the debt, it was removed in full at the last share issue but the key issue is the volume of losses the club makes every year which means that the debt has built up again in the last couple of years. That is the true issue that needs addressed!

 cmdc  Nov 21 2011, 11:02 AM

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QUOTE(chrissiboi @ Nov 21 2011, 10:32 AM) 

I thought the legal issue was over ? You as in the Trust or as a seperate individual have said that the case is sisted and due to circumstances which aren’t a technicality will not be an issue, I was misinformed but now that the Trust has clarified this everything can carry on.

Whoo hoo get old Nick on the board at GMFC and we’ll see the future of the club safe at last and Dougie will be able to turn a profit.

Chrissiboi, I don’t know if you are misinformed, or stirring, or just ignorant about the situation, but a sist is a suspension of the case, not a termination – as we’ve explained on numerous occassions. The suspension is indefinite, but it is open to either party to attempt to have the case recalled (albeit they would have to put a convincing case to a sheriff as to why this should happen). Until it is heard in court or dismissed the issue is ongoing. As far as we are concerned the case is (a.) suspended, and so not an immediate priority, and (b.) in the hands of our lawyer so that the Trust board can do what it is in place to do. Quite why you think that’s a problem is beyond me. I’m pretty sure AXA Insurance didn’t stop doing business while it waited on the outcome of last month’s judicial review. 

Re: the bit in bold – there is a lot of good stuff on this and other threads, and I’m sure there is a mature debate in there somewhere, but stuff like that is a bit cringeworthy. 

 Tonsilitis  Nov 25 2011, 05:09 PM

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QUOTE(Alibi @ Nov 25 2011, 04:02 PM) 

Is it correct that this court case about the 79 stars event is being dropped by the Trust because the legal costs are in fact massive? How can that be when there have been assurances that the Trust’s exposure would be a few hundred pounds as worst? Also, where does that leave the individual who was being sued? Does that mean he will have a possibly undeserved stigma against his name for all time? That seems a bit unfair to me. I don’t know the guy myself but if I were in his position I’d be keen to have the chance to clear my name.
No it is not correct! It is being dropped for legal reasons that make it impossible to carry on and, in fact would never have proceeded had proper disclosure been made to us and to a third party before the case got under way. Had the law been complied with neither the trust nor the defendant would have incurred any court related costs and that the law was not complied with is down to the defendant. 

You have to be in possession of all the facts to make your mind up about what is fair but my understanding is that the whole case has been funded by a third party and has not cost the defendant a bean! – if the Dr who never tells lies is to be believed!

 cmdc  Nov 25 2011, 05:39 PM

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QUOTE(Alibi @ Nov 25 2011, 04:02 PM) 

Is it correct that this court case about the 79 stars event is being dropped by the Trust because the legal costs are in fact massive?

No!

Not really for a ‘semi-public forum’ Mr. Feeney?

HERE IS (COMPLETELY UNEDITED) AN ENTIRELY UNSOLICITED MESSAGE SENT BY  YOUR PREDECESSOR NICK ROBINSON ON 23RD SEPTEMBER 2011 – TO CHRIS SILVER A NON-TRUST MEMBER. A SECOND MESSAGE TO ANOTHER NON- MEMBER WILL BE PUBLISHED HERE SOON!

 ‘I will be happy to meet you and talk through the whole thing face to face including how my figures compare with Jim’s and the reasons for differences but you are presumably on the doctors circulation list because your response repeats some of the myths and misconceptions he repeatedly propagates.  I know you are a decent guy because I met you on tour with Morton – was it at the washed out game at Lancaster? …..
Anyway and briefly:
1)  I admit that the organisation was a mess but I played no part in the trial by message board in the immediate aftermath, nor did any of the current board.
2)  Ernie Newall got himself banned from the message board.  No one else was responsible but in my opinion, the banning was fully merited and his despicable actings since just prove the point.  The man, in my opinion, is a complete creep, full of his own importance and prepared to use people for his own ends, just as he has used Jim Gallacher.
3)  Maybe some people did go over the top in the heat of the moment after the event and I fully agree they were stupid to do so, but whether what they said was untrue is yet to be proved.  Most of what Ernie says has an element of truth but it has been twisted in such a way as to turn the truth into lies.
4)  I had nothing whatever to do with getting people banned from the Morton message board.  Again they managed that themselves.  People were repeatedly warned not to discuss the Stars night and if they chose to violate that rule, whose fault is that?
5)  You refer to me as being independent.  I was not independent in that I investigated the matter on behalf of the trust and represent the trust all matters related to the court case. I am a trust director! That does not mean that I have fiddled anything as I have put together figures which can stand scrutiny in court.  For that reason, I have given Jim the benefit of the doubt throughout my report and many of the figures were supplied either by him or Ernie Newall.  Interestingly, all the legal actions by the defence so far have been about getting the case dismissed on technicalities.  That might be because, so far, no strong evidence has been put forward to demonstrate why my figures are wrong.  Just bluster from Ernie and “it wisnae me it was him” allegations with little foundation except as mentioned below.
6) You refer to another Newall myth about why was one of the suspects on the investigation committee.  Sean Donnelly was the only person who was available for me to consult and had done some work putting figures together.  I therefore used his knowledge of the event as a starting point but a starting point only.  He was involved in one meeting with me about the financial outcome of the night and then I proceeded to compute the numbers independently and none of what I have arrived at is the same as any of Sean’s figures.
7) Sean Donnelly has an apparent shortfall of which is less than it would be economic to pursue in court (about a fifth of what we started pursuing JG for) and further, the way his deficit arises is less certain in terms of proof.  Ernie has attributed losses to him simply on a guesswork basis with no hard evidence.

Chris, I don’t sit in judgement of anyone – the court will decide that.  All that you say about how the event was run is true in that it was shockingly run from a financial perspective, beginning to end.  I have tried to clean up the mess.  Now, what I have honestly put together regardless of anything Dr Newall may say, brought out that Jim Gallacher owed us nearly £3,000.  Some people thought we should just write that off.  Others, including me thought we had a duty to pursue it. You can’t please all of the people all of the time!  I wonder if we had not, when Jim might have paid us the couple of hundred pounds his figures said he owed or return the £400+ stock he had either sat on or drunk in the intervening 16 months?
Finally, there is another development in the last few days which will I believe bring things to a speedy end so far as the trust is concerned and graphically illustrate the deceit and forked tongues that have been going on in this whole matter.

If you would like to discuss the matter face to face, PM me.
Nick  

…LATER:

 

Chris,

A couple of things I think you are getting wrong here!

Regarding Sean Donnelly’s involvement in my investigation, I will repeat for clarity, I only used Sean’s input to establish some basic issues about what were the sources of income on the night, costs, etc. Once I knew those, I set about working them out for myself. The main income sources were as follows:

Bar Takings:

Most of the booze was supplied on a sale or return basis from Wm Morton & Co. I got their invoices and credit note and from those I worked out to the last can of coke what we paid for. The booze prices on the night were known so by applying them to the booze I knew we had paid for, I could work out a “gross” figure for bar takings. From that has to be deducted booze consumed by free drinkers e.g. the top table and booze given away as gratuities. Re gratuities, I have used figures supplied by Jim via Ernie Newall unchanged by me even though people I have asked who were supposed to have had free drink denied getting any. For free drinkers on the night, Jim wants us to allow £30 a head. At the prices on the night that’s a full bottle of spirits plus a couple of beers or three and half bottles of wine or 15 beers or some combination thereof. There would have been a queue of ambulances if that was true and I have taken the average suggested by other organisations who have run “free” drink nights.

In short, the above has no input from Sean Donnelly at all.

Ticket sales:

My ticket sales figures for Gallacher are mostly derived from his own schedules plus a few I have added where I have evidence he got the money. The difference between his figures and mine is 5 tickets

There are twelve tickets that I cannot say who got the money. It could have been Jim or Sean or they might not have even been paid for at all. I have not attributed them to anyone but Ernie with no evidence at all that I am aware of says they must have been paid to Sean. He also said Sean was responsible for Dougie Rae’s table on the same basis. That turned out to have been not paid and we collected a cheque from the club for it earlier this year!

Again – no input from Sean other than supplying his own and Gallachers spreadsheets sent to Sean re ticket sales.

Tombola money:

Jim says he got around £80 from the tombola money to help pay speakers. Stuart Duncan says that he got £600 and Sean Donnelly saw him given money although he can’t speak to the quantum. Now that’s a “my word against yours” statement but even if Jim did only get £80 he failed to include even that in his accounts given to us by his solicitor and has come up with several different versions.

I could go on but hopefully you are getting the drift. There is no conflict of interest in a trust director investigating the matter and whilst I accept that SD was also in the frame, the only part he played in my investigation was to help me understand the mechanics of the event. Once I had that, my information re Jim’s liability was mostly derived from third party information sources or Jim himself.

As for the police investigation, I would read nothing into that because the local bobbies have neither the manpower nor the expertise to undertake the sort of financial investigation required to establish what went on. They have to hire that in and they are not going to do so for a small beer case like this. I have dealt with prosecuting authorities too many times in my professional career not to know that to be true.

The open discussion of the case on the football message board and the accusations and counter accusations which flew around at the time were wrong. I fully agree but as I said, I had no part in that and as far as I can see Stuart Duncan was only guilty of trying to protect the reputation of the trust. There’s another discussion to be had about whether he did that wisely but that’s what he did.

When I took up the matter, I did so on behalf of the trust generally and did not act under the instructions of anyone on the trust board in terms of who or what to investigate nor did they in any way influence my conclusions.

So regarding the figures, I came up with numbers that said Jim owed us nearly £3,000. Do you think the trust should just have written that off? The equivalent figure for Sean Donnelly was just over £500 and that is too low to sue for and his position is that he owes nothing and will not pay it. What do you think we should do now?

I think you have hit one nail on the head. My belief is that Ernie’s involvement stems back to his being “insulted” on the message board and he has been after revenge ever since. You say it was Sean Donnelly who made the allegations about him but I have a recollection it might have been someone else. No matter, Ernie is out to kill the trust. He openly talks about trying to bring the trust to its knees on his blog. Jim Gallacher is just his pawn in all of this and the case would have been resolved a long time ago and far more cheaply for both sides but for Newall’s interventions.

A game changing matter has arisen in the last week or so and if what I now think is true is indeed the case, it will expose fully just who has been double dealing and deceitful and I will make sure it does get that exposure. Ernie Newall is a manipulator of people and in my opinion he has used Jim Gallacher in a shameful way.

I also think that you cannot justify the things Newall has said about people on his blog. The man is a creep of the first order and some of the things he has posted on his blog are straight from the sewer. Hopefully will get his come uppance one of these days.

As I have said Chris, I would be happy to discuss the matter face to face with you if it would help your understanding but please be aware, there is another side to this story other than the Newall version of events! Likewise, you might have spoken to Jim Gallacher, but you did not speak to me to give that some balance!’

 

THE MEMBERSHIP AWAITS A DATE FOR THE LEGALLY BINDING S.G.M. MR. CHAIRMAN!