Ice Hockey: Robinson's confident about Bees
December 13, 2007
SUPPORTERS’ club chairman Stuart Robinson is confident that a new financial backer can be found to save Bracknell Bees from folding.
Bees’ future was plunged into doubt this week when David Taylor decided to walk away from the club he has been running for the last two-and-a-half years.
But with the team just a point off the top of the English Premier League and through to the semi-finals of the Cup, Robinson believes they remain an attractive proposition for any potential investor.
Fans will attend a crisis meeting at Honies Bar in the Bracknell ice rink tonight (8pm) to discuss ways of keeping the club alive.
And Robinson said: “We have an excellent set-up, an incredibly committed group of players, a fantastic fan base and some unexploited marketing opportunities.
“If we were bottom of the league with no crowds and the team had left, there would be a lot more cause for concern.
“But none of those apply and if somebody is not prepared to take a quality club on in this state then they never will.
“We do not want to fold in the middle of our 20th anniversary season and I would urge fans and other interested parties to come along to tonight’s meeting where we can explain what we want to do.
“The priority is to identify potential people, who can take us through to the end of the season and hopefully beyond.”
It was at a similar meeting in 2005 that Taylor stepped in to save the club after its multi-millionaire founder John Nike had announced he was pulling the plug on his financial backing.
Taylor has been running Bees under an operating licence from Nike in the semi-professional EPL ever since.
During his tenure, they have won the League, Cup and Championship play-offs.
But the Wokingham estate agent encountered financial problems this season, which came to a head when players threatened to go on strike over unpaid wages.
And after complaining of coming under pressure from a section of fans, he and his wife Sharon announced on Tuesday that they were relinquishing the operating licence with immediate effect.