HYMAS AND SAUNDERS LOANS ROW
Ex-Stags directors Hymas and Saunders demand £1m loan repayment from Mansfield Town
chad.co.uk 05 June 2013
Mansfield Town Football Club are facing demands for the repayment of loans worth almost £1m from former directors Steve Hymas and Andy Saunders.
The private approach by the pair, who left the club on angry terms last summer and then formed new club AFC Mansfield, was made in March, but was made public on facebook at the weekend by Carolyn Radford, chief executive and wife of owner John Radford.
She wrote on facebook: “When John took over Mansfield Town Football Club it was over a million pounds in debt and hadn’t paid the bills in several months.
“Saunders and Hymas were letting it go under - the receivers had been called in. We go on holiday last year and return to the news that these so-called ‘die hard’ Stags fans had resigned as directors and set up their own alternative football club with the same name!
“That hurt, but now, just as the town is about to enjoy a long awaited return to the Football League, Saunders and Hymas are trying to sue and destroy our beloved Mansfield Town Football Club. I don’t know how they can sleep at night.”
An official club statement on Monday said: “The board of directors of Mansfield Town Football Club are disappointed to have received solicitors’ letters acting on behalf of Mr Steve Hymas and Mr Andrew Saunders in relation to the repayment of loans from Mansfield Town Football Club.
“The club are contesting the demands and the matter is now in the hands of the club’s legal team.”
However, a joint statement from Saunders and Hymas said: “Until now we have kept our own counsel in the hope the situation could be resolved amicably.
“We are lifelong Stags fans with over 90 years of supporting the club between us, and that continues to be the case today and in the future.
“When we purchased the club it was clearly under very difficult circumstances, having just been relegated.
“From the very early days the owners were ploughing thousands into the club just to keep it going. Crowds were down and income falling.
“When Steve Hymas came on board, his extra finances helped, but it was clear we couldn’t continue to finance the club long-term, so we sought specialist advice. There were three options - administration, a part-time squad or selling the club.
“Administration was never considered and we decided to try to find a purchaser. We entered negotiations with John Radford, who would eventually go on to purchase the shares of Hymas, Saunders and Steve Middleton, but Andrew Perry steadfastly refused to sell his shareholding, which nearly destroyed the whole purchase.
“We were all then invited back onto the board (except Mr Perry) and, with a further £10,000, then £20,000 investment per director, we were able to purchase a five per cent shareholding in the club each via Yellows 08, the major shareholder of MTFC.”
The statement continued: “At that time the relationship with John Radford was excellent and we were able to take up effective roles within the club and worked, unpaid, every day to try to move the club forward.
“Regrettably, once Carolyn Still was employed as CEO the relationship began to fragment.
“John Radford then called a board meeting of MTFC and announced the board of Yellows 08 had agreed to sell all of its shares, including those of Hymas and Saunders, to a company called Amber 12, a company established by John Radford for £100.
“It’s important to note that both Yellows 08 and Amber 12 at the time had only one board director, John Radford.
“In effect, he had stripped us of our shareholding, having paid £30,000 each only a few months before. It was then decided we could no longer work with him and resigned. Yellows 08 have now applied to be struck off.
“We have never been subject to a club gagging order as alleged and did not launch legal action until March - Andrew Perry launched winding-up proceedings against the club action prior to the Liverpool game.
“With regard to the loans, which are substantial and separate from the substantial sums we invested in the club, given the breakdown in the relationship, we have decided that we must call in our loans, which we are perfectly within our rights to do as our purchase agreement states.
“We have asked on numerous occasion to sit down and discuss with John Radford a sensible and structured way to repay the loans, but none of these invites have been taken up, which has led to the action we have taken only very recently. It is our wholehearted desire that this regrettable situation can be resolved amicably.”
Stags manager Paul Cox admitted the cash wrangle was a worry to him, saying: “I just hope that anything that happens doesn’t put in any danger what we are doing and how we are trying to advance this club at this minute.
“A lot of people come to this club and pay their hard-earned money to watch us and I hope they don’t get affected by this scenario.
“Since I have been here there have been a lot of things going on. But I am working with a guy (John Radford) that, when he came in, found this football club on its knees and I personally don’t believe there would be a club here without him.
“He has ploughed his own money in the club and over two years he has produced. John has always conducted himself in a professional manner and with class.
“I can’t personally understand why anyone would want to attack him or do something that would stop the club’s progress.
“It amazes me sometimes why he doesn’t just up sticks and go off to do something else.
“Some things that materialise here leave a bitter taste in the mouth. Some of the things I have heard have made me question my own sanity.”
Club statement - 03 June 2013
mansfieldtown.net, 3rd June 2013
The Board of Directors of Mansfield Town Football Club are disappointed to have received letters acting on behalf of Mr Steve Hymas and Mr Andrew Saunders in relation to the repayment of loans from Mansfield Town Football Club.
Read more at http://www.mansfieldtown.net/news/article/club-statement-03-june-2013-853137.aspx?#3VwbQ3Jr9Zf2AC7j.99
The club are contesting the demands and the matter is now in the hands of the club’s legal team
Stags Loans Row Spills Onto Facebook
mansfield103.co.uk, Friday 31st May 2013 6pm
A row between the owner of Mansfield Town and two of its ex-directors has spilled on to a social networking site.
Chief Executive Carolyn Radford posted on Facebook this evening that Andrew Saunders and Steve Hymas were taking legal action to recover money previously loaned to the Stags.
They had joined forces with a number local businessmen to run the club during its first few years outside of the Football League and both left the One Call Stadium last summer.
They then set up AFC Mansfield who play in lower non-league football.
Mr Hymas confirmed to Mansfield 103.2 that they are seeking to get their money back saying: "Our loans in MTFC Ltd became repayable when the club got promoted back into the Football League. I believe Mansfield Town stands to make £7.5m in TV rights alone over the next few years. This is purely a business transaction not football."
Mr Radford told us that he and his wife are both disappointed in the method that the former directors are using and says he will consult his lawyers on Monday and is fully expecting that they will completely refute the demand.
The row comes as Mansfield Town prepare to return to the Football League after a five year exile
Ex-Directors Want To Sit And Discuss Stags Loans
mansfield103.co.uk, Monday 3rd June, 2013
One of two of Mansfield Town's ex-directors who want back the loans they've given the club has told Mansfield 103.2 they're ready to sit and talk with Stags owner John Radford.
Solicitors for Steve Hymas and Andrew Saunders have contacted the club enquiring how the money - thought to be around £1m - could be paid back.
The row spilled over on to the social networking site Facebook over the weekend, as reported by Mansfield 103.2 on Friday.
But. Mr Hymas is hopeful that the matter can be sorted amicably, saying: "To be honest, I just hope Mr Radford or his lawyers give us a call and we can just sit round a table and stop being silly on Facebook, etc.
"We don't want the club to suffer, it's back in the Football League.
"We just want to sit down and discuss it, that's all we want to do."
Mr Radford has told Mansfield 103.2 that he is now seeking legal advice and was shocked to receive the lawyers' letter after they had all joined forces in 2010 to save the club.
He said: "They had called the receivers in, not through any fault of their own, it was just that they didn't realise how much it took to look after a football club and they basically ran out of money.
"I came along and was able to help them out and it was all in good faith. I've no intention of ever taking any money off the football club and I want it to succeed and I thought they did as well."
twitter.com/JRadfordMTFC 5 June 2013
I bought a lottery ticket last week. Can I get my money back now...?
Facebook, 31 May 2013 5pm
Sorry to moan but weekend officially ruined. When John took over Mansfield Town Football Club it was over a million pounds in debt - hadn't paid the bills in several months - Saunders & Hymas were letting it go under - the receivers had been called in. We go on holiday last year & return to news that these so-called 'die hard' stags fans have resigned as Directors and set up their own alternative football club with the same name!! That hurt, but now, just as the town is about to enjoy a long awaitied return to the Football League, Saunders & Hymas are trying to sue and destroy our beloved Mansfield Town Football Club... I don't know how they can sleep at night. Cx
facebook user (name removed)
Why would you write comments on fb as a director of a football club is beyond me. They kept this club floating with there own hard earned cash during the haslam fall! And had a lot to do with keeping the club running ! So before everyone jumps on the band wagon and starts slating um just get ya facts together first!
facebook user (name removed): Facts. They called in the reciverers. They set up an AFC. They ran up a million pound of debt up. They did not have a lease in place to get us back in the league. They would have let the club die. That's NOT saving our club!! COYS x
The morning after we woke up from winning the league I got a text message from Hymas telling me he was suing us for just under £500k we already new this because him and Saunders served a writ on us for over 1 million now not a lot of people no this but if John and Carolyn hadn't thought quick that million could have stopped us from going into the football league that's how bad it was. Look what they have done for this club back in the league our ground back from Haslam trip to wembley Liverpool ext ext !!! Now how much can they take the have now got ex directors trying to take the club under.. Lots of love Steve from the Gimp xx
another facebook user (name removed)
Read some shit spouted about this from people who know f**k all about it.Sorry Steve had to say summat m8.
I know mate. Many people out there know the true facts. Im not gonna get in a slanging match with a bird on facebook.Thats just not me.Old school . !
Facebook, 2 June 2013 9am
I have sat silent and read all the posts on carolyns status and stagsnet.These are faceless ill-informed people and they can go and get fucked.
I am a loyal person to my friends,family and the many lads i stood with on the terraces but fuck me over and i am your worst enemy.
We were shafted late on at the club for shares hence we left on bad terms and for this reason i will aks for my due loans back.Its my perogative and the faceless morons would be the first to moan if they were charged an extra fiver.
You can take the boy out of Mansfield but not Mansfield out the boy.
Mansfield born and bred and Mansfield till i die.!!!
Steve. Facts are facts. I have only told the truth so stop misleading our fans that their is anything in your action other than your bitterness at our success. We will not let you bring our beloved MTFC to its knees again. And your threats above bring out your usual colours. COYS. Cx
yet another facebook user (name removed)
Can I just say that some mansfield fans have short memories. Steven Hymas and Andrew Saunders are mansfield through and through. They put money in the club at the darkest hour and saved us. We may of still been going under but With Haslam we would of already been dead in the water. Also big thanks to John Radford for his money who has got us in a position for bigger things. Carolyn Radford Facebook is not the place to put things regarding politics on Facebook if Steve and Andrew are owed then just pay them back. The loyal fans would not grudge them that.
All the best to Steven Hymas and Andrew Saunders at the bulls.
Come on you Stags.
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