Exclusive Deceit & Deception At Lincoln City

Last updated : 22 May 2011 By Michael Foley

Forget wikileaks this is the elephant in the room Imps, courtesy of Michael Foley. The comments are the authors and not necessarily those of Lincoln City Mad. 



On March 15, 2011 the Lincolnshire Echo published an article entitled: “Bob Dorrian:  Lincoln City will break the bank to sign Ashley Grimes”. That was not the main story, however. Instead, the Echo reported that the Club was celebrating a “maiden success” in their fresh quest for investment. “The Imps will receive a £50,000 injection from new director Roger Bates, who joined the full Board on Saturday having previously been an associate director since 2008”, trumpeted the Echo. “The extra money pumped in by Bates, which makes up the £75,000 required to become a full director, will go towards the club’s cash flow. The amount directed to Steve Tilson’s transfer war chest has yet to be determined” noted the journal.  A major success, then, for the Board of Directors?  Unfortunately, the reality is very different…..


Roger Bates became an Associate Director of Lincoln City Football Club in 2008. The required investment into the Club at that time for such a position was £25,000 in injected capital in return for 50,000 shares. However, as the Club’s own share register shows, it was two years later before Mr. Bates even arrived at the requisite number of shares to become an Associate Director. His shareholding up to October 7 2010 was 40,535 (below the required limit) when he purchased a further 10,000 shares. The fact that Mr. Bates was made an Associate Director in 2008 but did not have the requisite 50,000 shares until 2010 itself poses questions (although it should be noted that he was not the only Associate Director appointed on the “never-never”).  His appointment as a Full Director of LCFC appears to be treading a similar path.


The reality is that Roger Bates is a long way short of injecting a further £50,000 into Lincoln City Football Club; indeed and at the time of writing he hasn’t even invested the amount required to become a Director at the previous level (100,000 shares) much less the 150,000 full-value purchased shares now required and as listed in the Club’s investment brochure. Mr. Bates was appointed a full Director in March 2011 but has so far only purchased 35,000 additional shares (on April 7, 2011) taking his total to 85,532 shares. This is 64,468 shares short of the required amount  i.e. over £32,000 less than necessary to be in compliance with the Board’s declared public policy.


So, the question needs asking as to why this appointment was made in contravention of official Club policy? Curiously, the announcement of the Bates appointment was made by the Club on the same day that the Board of Directors rejected my investment offer which would have guaranteed a cash injection of circa £40,000 into the Club by end April 2011 with an undertaking of more to come.  It is difficult to escape the conclusion that the Board has deliberately starved the Club (and its Manager) of funds rather than having a newcomer in the Boardroom asking pertinent questions and that the announcement and timing of the Bates appointment was nothing other than a crude ploy to divert attention away from a more serious investment offer.


It is surely time that the Club’s supporters not only asked questions but demanded answers. It is surely time that the Club’s shareholders brought the Board of Directors to account.  It is surely time for the members of the Supporters Trust to ask their representatives on the Club Board why they connive with and / or condone such chicanery. (The Trust AGM on May 5 is a good place and time to start).  And, above all, it is surely time that the Board of Directors posed questions about their own stewardship of the Club. Perhaps they should now do the decent thing. Always assuming, that is, that they are any longer capable of acting in an ethical way and recognising what that is.