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|An open letter to Andrew Kelly|
at 09:36 3 Jul 2021
With all the issues that have taken place this year, Dale fans have never associated yourself with any of that. You can see that with your re-election vote at the AGM where 95% of supporters voted in favour of you. You are not seen in the same light as Bottomley and Rawlinson. Dale supporters know you for what you are – a proper Rochdale bloke who loves both the Club and the town.
Arguably, you’ve been the one constant at the Club in the past twenty years, the one constant through the most successful time in our 114 year history and from my dealings with you, I am well aware of all the work you have done that doesn’t reach the public domain – whether that be your work with the academy, or your work with both Hilly and Flicker throughout that time. This club would not be what it is had you not been involved.
We’re Rochdale, we’ve always been different. We’ve never had an owner in modern history. The likes of Cannon have tried but there’s been a Rochdale way that has seen us shine since the dark days of the 80’s where we almost dropped into non league. That Rochdale way has led to a succession of hard working individuals acting in the best interests of the Club – you as much as any of them – and that has seen us survive and prosper.
We’ve not had the debts of other clubs, we’ve not gone into admin unlike every other EFL club in the area. We’ve had the stadium rebuilt into what it is today, we’ve had the most successful time on the field in our entire history, and we’ve been a benchmark for every other club to follow. That’s come on your watch.
This weekend is the most important weekend in the history of the Club.
By the end of this weekend, we might be in a position where we have a single owner or pair of owners. That fantastic video that the club put out about “This is my club” that got me all emotional might need remaking.
What do we know about them? Practically nothing – one comes from Essex seems to have no trail whatsoever which carries it own set of red flags and the other comes from Worksop with a history in housing developments.
But we are at the stage where they are close to getting the keys to the club.
What else do we know? Well I believe that they’d already shown an interest and you’d knocked it back. They weren’t good enough for the club a few months ago, so why now?
We know we disagreed about MH and whether that was in the best interests of the club, but if MH wasn’t the answer, why are we going with people who were dismissed as tyre kickers previously?
You can understand the others for selling to them. They’ve not got the history you have, despite their claims. They’ve never been here for most of their lives, they’ve never put their own money in year after year. They are not what we would call proper Rochdale people. You are. You’ve always been “What can I do for this club?” rather than “What’s in it for me” and that is why you are so respected within the town/
I implore you not to sell your shares in the Club, and if you do there are alternatives that protect the best interests of the Football Club and give you the legacy that you richly deserve. You’ve done your time and nobody can blame you for wanting to enjoy your retirement. You’ve done far more than any of the rest of us would do, but there’s one thing left to do that will protect the Club you love and have done so much for.
|Peter Madden's funeral|
at 10:04 21 Apr 2020
Been asked to post this:
Due to the virus, the attendees at Pete’s funeral is very limited so the Madden family has decided to make it available as a webcast. The details are below. All Dale fans are invited to log-on. There will be a proper send-off for Pete the other side of the current crisis.
Peter Maddens funeral webcast:
Date: Friday 1 May, 2020
Service Chapel : Rochdale
People can log on from 11.05 am
|Tranmere tickets - cheaper in advance|
at 08:54 1 Aug 2019
From the OS https://www.rochdaleafc.co.uk/news/2019/july/ticket-news--tranmere-rovers-a_augu
Advance prices (listed below) rise by £3 on the day, with the exception of under 12 tickets which remain the same.
Advance prices are as follows:
Adults (23-64) - £19
Senior (65+) - £12
Young Persons (18-22) - £12
*Disabled - £12 (carer free)
Under 18 - £6
Under 12, if accompanied - £2
*Please note that wheelchair pays can only be purchased through Tranmere Rovers directly. Please call 0151 609 3328 to book your tickets. Wheelchair bays are located in a separate stand to the Dale fans, in the Bebbington Paddock.
On matchday, Dale fans can pay cash through the turnstiles, but don't forget that 5% of revenue from all tickets purchased directly from the RAFC Ticket Office stays with the club. If you can't make it to the Ticket Office to purchase your ticket, give us a call on 01706 644646 (option 8) and we'll send your tickets to Prenton Park for collection on the day of the game. Don't forget, that for the 2019/20 season, there are NO booking fees on tickets bought over the phone or online.
Young persons tickets will require ID - Tranmere Rovers say that they have a strict policy regarding this. Student ID will not be accepted, as the ID must have you date of birth on it. If ID cannot be provided, then the full adult price will be charged.
at 21:24 28 Jul 2019
Been reported that Kevin Stonehouse who played us for in the late 80s has died. Scored the winner for us at Anfield
|The Overcoat Men|
at 21:32 16 Jul 2019
New Dale book out next month by Mark Hodkinson:
The story of two men who saved their football club from extinction. Secret plans to turn Spotland, the home of Rochdale AFC, into a housing estate are spied. David Kilpatrick and Graham Morris set upon a desperate mission to save their beloved, beleaguered football club. But first they have to take on what many fans consider to be the ‘enemy within’ and also topple the local Spring King and his dogged boardroom acolytes – a ‘mobile drinks party’.
They work tirelessly, persuading companies to write off debts so they can buy back the land on which the club stands, a tricky proposition when you are skint and bottom of the Football League. Meanwhile, it’s the early 1980s and the town of Rochdale is deep in recession, the last of the cotton mills closing down. The limit of most fans’ investment in their club is routinely the price of a season ticket.
Directors risk their houses and businesses, sometimes forfeiting marriages, families and health in the name of their club. Even in the corporate age, these Overcoat Men – self-made local businessmen serving on club boards – are often the unseen, unsung heroes of football.
at 15:40 18 Jun 2019
|Kit Launch day - Saturday 15th June|
at 19:39 10 Jun 2019
Supporters are reminded that this year’s kit launch and family fun day event will take place on Saturday 15th June at the Crown Oil Arena.
Dale’s kits for the 2019/20 season, as voted for by you, will be revealed to fans at 9am on the day.
Almost 400 supporters voted for their favourite designs – thank you once again to those who got involved!
There will be plenty going on at the Crown Oil Arena, with food stalls, fairground rides, virtual reality and FIFA games, raffles and prizes to be won.
We're also delighted to confirm that Dale boss Brian Barry-Murphy, along with some of the first-team players, will be holding a signing session from 11am.
Our kit suppliers Errea will also be bringing their promotional truck to the Crown Oil Arena on the day.
All of this is FREE of charge!
Unfortunately, this year's Josh Fest, a Family Fun Day in memory of our Number 55 Joshua McCormack, has been cancelled.
Those who purchased tickets for the event can claim a refund from the RAFC Ticket Office. For any refunds not claimed by Saturday 15th June, the proceeds will go to three charities, as chosen by Josh's family; Friends Of Rosie, Be Brave Bears & Derian House.
This post has been edited by an administrator
|Secure your seat: Deadline Friday 31st May|
at 22:04 23 May 2019
Existing Rochdale AFC Season Ticket holders have until Friday 31st May to guarantee their current seat for next season.
From 9am on Saturday 1st June, all seat reservations will be lifted, meaning they will be available to purchase on general sale.
2019/20 Season Tickets have been on sale since Wednesday 1st May, with our earlybird offer running until Sunday 30th June.
After this time, prices will rise by up to £100.
Tickets can be purchased
* online at https://www.rafctickets.co.uk/seasontickets.aspx
* telephone at 0844 826 1907 (option 8)
* in person at the ticket office. Opening times
Friday 24th May 9am to 5pm
Saturday 25th May 9am to 12pm
Tuesday 28th May 9am-5pm
Wednesday 29th May 9am-5pm
Thursday 30th May 9am-5pm
Friday 31st May Late night opening, from 9am-8pm
|Big Jim handball|
at 08:56 10 Apr 2019
looks handball to me, though it bobbled up.
at 17:01 14 Mar 2019
Just been announced
|Sponsored walk to Accy|
at 21:01 11 Mar 2019
This Saturday, a number of Dale supporters will be make the sixteen mile journey from Spotland to the Crown Ground ahead of Dale's away game with Accy.
We've currently got 20+ making the walk with the vast majority doing so to raise funds for the 5-a-side pitch. The pitch is in a very poor state and will be ripped down and rebuilt later this year and will make a massive difference to the work that the Dale Community Trust do within our town.
Many of the walkers are raising money individually but you can sponsor the overall group at
Anyone fancy joining us at the last minute can sign up here
This post has been edited by an administrator
|Few thoughts from me|
at 21:39 6 Mar 2019
Plenty has been said on here over the past week or so with regards to David Bottomley and his position as CEO at Dale. Having worked with him through my role at the Trust, just thought I’d pen together a few thoughts from the evidence that I’ve seen over the past three months.
For me the role of the CEO is to oversee the running of the club. It’s to take ultimate responsibility for every facet of the club, ensuring that off the field, the club is sufficiently well run to allow the manager the biggest budget possible without threatening the future of the club, ensuring that the club remains at the heart of its community, and embracing the views of all those with a love for the club. I see those being addressed.
There seems to be a questioning towards the appointment DB that his predecessors have been exempt from, even those it has since transpired arrived at Spotland complete with baggage. There were no threads regarding the appointments of James Mason, William Goodwin, Russ Green, Colin Garlick and those before questioning whether they went through the interview process. David was appointed by the Board of Directors, as was presumably the case with those before, he has passed the Fit and Proper Person’s test and having been on the Board himself for the past four years, he takes the position fully versed in the “Rochdale way”.
With regard to his predecessors, I was very enthusiastic about James when he first took over given the comments from the Bradford supporters, but he was working on a part time basis whilst launching a new business elsewhere. You cannot do the job on a part time basis given the ultimate responsibility. William didn’t reply to a single email or meet with the Trust during his time at the top for the two to three month period he was in charge despite us being requested to send everything directly to him. I liked Russ a lot, and supplied a letter backing him for his appeal (which btw was reduced by three months). However, Russ always struck me as someone who had 50 things to do at any one time, but could only get through 40 on any given day. That might be unfair to Russ but he always came across as swamped with the work he had on. Colin was great and incredibly efficient about what he did but was never one to stray from the Colin Garlick way of doing things. When David Gartside was running the Trust, it was almost a running joke about “I’m waiting to hear back from (insert name of CEO of the time here)”. We’ve not had that on any occasion since David Bottomley was appointed.
So with respect to David, we have seen a different way of thinking to what we’ve seen before. There has been a genuine desire to have a running dialogue with supporters throughout and not just some token meeting every now and then. There is consideration to the views of supporters on a level we’ve not seen before. It’s been a big criticism in recent years that the Club pay lip service to the Trust, but we’re not seeing that. Will that continue? Well why not? Like I said, the dialogue between Club and Trust is ongoing even to the extent of contacting us on Monday morning following the dismissal of Keith Hill.
So what has changed in the (almost) three months since David took charge?
• Communication with supporters. Everything’s been asked, and everything has been answered and published.
• Genuine views from supporters are sought, considered and acted on. There’s no arrogance or bullishness that his way is the only way of doing things.
• End of Season Do has been reverted to the Traditional one that we wanted. Not only that, we were offered choices to the format, and they went with our wishes. The pricing etc all met our requests.
• The much maligned fixture board. It’s still not updated quite to the extent that I’d like, but there is no comparison with the three months since the appointment to the three months before the appointment.
• Communication from the club. We told him that communication wasn’t good enough and steps have been taken to address that. Yes the Diary is part of that but it’s an informal way of letting supporters know about stuff behind the scenes. The last one (vote of confidence one aside) informed fans about the way the players ran out (maybe not groundbreaking news but it was something fans had asked about), a report on the work that Tony Ellis has been doing with the Academy and details of an arranged meeting with the Jenkins’ family. Of course some will have had no interest in that but its fresh stuff out there that there didn’t exist a platform previously to do so.
• Injury news. We all know Hilly treated injury news like it was absolutely top secret but we communicated this to the club through David as did other fans at the Forum, and if truth be told, we saw a difference in this from January onwards. All of a sudden, injured players were being spoken about (probably through much gritted teeth).
During the last three months, I've spoken to three different people who work for the club and have asked their thoughts on DB, all of whom have spoken very highly of him. They speak of a man who is ambitious for the club and looking to see improvements in all facets. When asking, it’s been through conversation rather than anything more formal, and replies from the staff have been incredibly genuine in their praise rather than giving me an answer that they are well aware will get back upstairs.
So why’s he not suitable for the role? He’s a fan of the club, seen the working of the club close up over the past four years, been involved in the running of the club for the past four years, and has an employment history in business management. I don’t get some of the criticisms. If the big smoking gun is an interpretation of a 2001 court case at a Toy Company, then does that really have relevance to the running of our club 18 years later? Might well be worth remarking that Russ Green received far less criticism on these pages when found guilty by the FA for an offence two years earlier for the role he went on to do at Dale(and I still maintain Russ was harshly treated).
In terms of supporting the Trust, I think I’m right in saying that he was the only member of the Board last season to join the Trust and has been instrumental in ensuring that most of the current Board have done so this season. He has supported our events on numerous occasions, long before he was appointed CEO.
Of course, some will dismiss this in its entirety. Put it down to lip service, blowing smoke up each other’s back side or whatever. I guess if you’ve made your mind up, it’s made up.
But it isn’t some chummy, chummy relationship. As we mentioned at our own AGM, relations between the club and the Trust were strained to say the least at the back end of last season but a lot of work has been put in to repairing that on both sides. But there’s now a great working relationship which allows openness, honesty and disagreements when necessary.
If concerns are genuine and not just innuendo, then might I suggest one of the following:
• Go and see him. He’s not a monster. Speak to him about your worries and give him that opportunity to offer his response. Drop him an email and arrange a time where you can go down and speak to him. I know many supporters have took the opportunity to do so already.
• Write to the Chairman and tell him your concerns. At the end of the day, he’s the club’s biggest shareholder, he’s the man at the top and he’ll have headed up the board that appointed David. It’ll have more impact that posting a reply on here.
• Raise things at the AGM in a couple of months’ time. Many Dale supporters are shareholders and there will be that opportunity as there always is for an open forum and to raise these concerns and have them answered directly.
At the end of the day, if the concerns are of that level, do something about it rather than posting it on here. As things stands, it is as I said before mainly innuendo and assumptions and there comes a time where the legal implications for me and this website need to be considered.
We had it when the Manchester Evening News published the story about the reduction in the ground capacity. “We’ve received a leaked letter” the journalist said to me on the phone when he tried bigging up the story suggesting mischief on someone’s part, after all the true story was last Summer when the capacity was cut to just over 7,000 not now when it’s been raised back up to 400 or so short of what it was before the cuts.
We’ve raised people’s concerns off here and we’ve asked them directly. It’s clear that as a Trust, our response are not considered good enough by everyone. But what I’ll say is that I think we’ve took pretty much every single concern off here and asked them all face to face, and published every single answer without censure. I doubt there is another club / Trust in the country that would go through each and every rumour like we have and publish the responses that we have. I do not believe there is another club in the country with the level of transparency we have now.
Time will tell everything, and I know when it looks like we’re heading for the drop, it’s very difficult to try and claim that everything is hunky dory. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with criticism, but some of the stuff that has been posted on here has crossed a line and become personal and gossippy. There’s plenty more work to be done at the club, things need improving but that work will get done and things will keep improving, and if we as a Trust have to keep asking questions, then we will. If we have to remind the club to do stuff then we will. There’s plenty we still want to see improvements on, and feel free to raise any concerns by emailing email@example.com
I’m sure there’s plenty of whatabouttery that can be stuck in reply to this, but from reading these pages, you’d think that we’ve got the next Owen Oyston at the helm and the truth is a million miles from that. We’ve got someone who many have backed up as being a genuine Dale fan who throughout his short tenure has shown real genuine desire to deal with fans concerns, whether that be meeting supporters after the Bradford troubles, listening to me list off rumour after rumour, meet fans concerned with the first team or many others. It’s been said repeatedly, his door remains open to supporters as many have took advantage of so you don’t have to rely on my take on it.
at 19:11 18 Feb 2019
If you're thinking of doing the walk to Accrington and would like to raise funds for the 5-a-side pitch appeal, then we can set up individual online sponsorship payment forms for you. We've set two or three up so far today and we can use generic text or if you'd prefer to have it individualised, then we can do that for you.
To sign up for the walk
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