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Birmingham Brummies fans clash with ex-owner at demo

Season ticket holders demand refunds after historic team is closed down

Birmingham Brummies fans protest outside the offices of Phillips Associates
Birmingham Brummies fans protest outside the offices of Phillips Associates

Police were called to a protest when angry speedway fans clashed with Birmingham Brummies owner Alan Phillips.

Tempers flared during the demonstration outside Mr Phillips’ Solihull-based business over his management of the financially-troubled club, which was recently closed down by the British Speedway Promoters Association and has fallen into administration.

With thousands of pounds left outstanding to creditors including Perry Barr Stadium, club staff and season ticket holders, the protesters presented the ex-promotor with a letter demanding he “made good on your promises to ensure that everyone is paid and we trust this promise extends to the 157 season ticket holders.”

But Brian Buck, who has supported the Birmingham Brummies for 62 years, said fans really just wanted to see the return of their beloved team.

Alan Phillips talks to Birmingham Brummies fans at his offices
Alan Phillips talks to Birmingham Brummies fans at his offices
 

“Season ticket holders would give up the season ticket refund just to get the club back,” he added.

“We are hopeful of a club return. If someone takes over the club the debts will be able to be paid off. We really are hoping for a new owner”.

Mr Phillips had his licence annulled on July 4 after the club’s debts spiralled out of control. When no new owners could be found who were willing to take on the debts, the BSPA closed the club.

 

However, the businessman and owner, who bought the Brummies for £120,000 three years ago, blamed fans’ poor attendance figures for the club’s fate.

“Attendance has dropped by a third this year,” he said.

“It was the crowd that never was. We tried dropping the price but nothing worked.”

He claimed he tried everything to save the club, and even found a fan willing to invest £25,000, before it was closed down.

“The future of the club is not in my hands, I found the money to keep the club alive but the BSPA rejected that,” he claimed. “It’s with the administrators.”

No-one was arrested at the protest last Thursday and supporters eventually left without any problems.

 

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