A MESSAGE FROM MARTIN McSHEA, CLUB PRESIDENT
Over only a few seasons, Clapton FC has seen a huge rise in the number of supporters from around twenty in 2013 to a staggering 761 in October 2015 for Non-League Day. Already since the start of the current season, attendance is consistently between 200 to 300 fans at home games, generating significant income for the club.
However, exactly how much money and how it is spent is far less clear-cut – it is almost impossible for Clapton fans to have any say or influence in the running of the club, which is tightly controlled by its purported 'owner', Vince McBean.Imagine the difference if Clapton FC was owned and managed by its supporters? If income was completely transparent and ploughed back into improvements of facilities and the pitch? If we looked after our players and properly encouraged them to stay? If the skills and commitment of the club's fans was welcomed and encouraged, rather than treated with suspicion?
In 2013, the three life members of the original Clapton FC re-established what we consider the 'real' club, which has an executive committee and a membership of over 150. The ongoing dispute over the ownership and control of both the club and the Old Spotted Dog Ground, as well as the shambolic way that both are currently managed, is fairly complex – you can read the background here
. What is absolutely clear, however, is that nothing will change and there is no prospect of Clapton FC flourishing under the control of its supporters until this dispute is finally settled.
Efforts have been made to try to achieve this without the need for legal action, but it is increasingly apparent that the only way to resolve ownership of the club and the ground is through the courts.
We are therefore launching a Clapton Supporters Action Fund
, with all money donated going towards transforming Clapton FC, with the help of Supporters Direct, into a club that is fan-owned and fan-managed. In the short term this will include funding for legal action to rescue it and secure its immediate future, but your donations will also help us plan for a genuinely revitalised club.If you want to help build on our club's long and proud history, please donate to the Clapton Supporters Action Fund.
Everyone donating at least £20 will receive one of our limited-edition "Supporters' Acton Fund" badges.