If either Port Vale Chief Executive Perry Deakin or Chairman Peter Miller had been able to attend tonight’s Supporters’ Club meeting they would have felt the mounting anger of fans at first hand.
Sadly, neither of them were at Tommy Cheadle’s to witness the first genuine public outpourings of frustration, dissent and disbelief at what is happening at our club.
The aim of the campaign for change – which included Black and Gold, the North London Valiants and Starve ‘Em Out groups – was to get rid of the old board, masquerading as Valiant 2001, and pave the way for a new era of openness.
It spoke volumes, therefore, that all three groups were well represented at a meeting tonight during which fans voiced their concerns over the club’s finances and speculation that the Blue Sky investment deal has gone pear-shaped.
Basically, having adopted a wait-and-see approach to the new(ish) regime, supporters are now starting to question why they are seeing no progress – either on or off the field – and why the new era of transparency hasn’t arrived.
More to the point, they want to know why deals they thought were signed and sealed a month ago – such as Blue Sky’s initial £150,000 investment – haven’t gone through.
They want to know if the money for Mr Deakin and Mr Miller’s shares is in the bank and, if so, why it isn’t being spent amid rumours of breathtaking penny-pinching.
Among other questions, they want to know why the club’s AGM has been shunted back to February and why the December 17 completion date for the Robbie Williams suite won’t now be hit.
They want to know why the club’s own website states that Micky Adams opted to step down as a director but former director Stan Meigh claims it was him who withdrew the gaffer’s proxy.
I, for one, would like to publicly praise Mr Meigh for at least having the bottle to attend tonight’s meeting and face up to some pretty hostile questioning. Whatever people think of Mr Meigh, he’s a Vale fan alright.
It will be interesting to see if the club’s directors show the same courage when the Supporters’ Club asks them to attend a face-to-face meeting with fans within the next 10 days to allay all of these concerns.
After all, if there’s nothing for us to worry about then all they have to do is prove that the promised money and progress isn’t, as many fear, simply pie in the sky.
Read my Port Vale articles every Friday during the season in The Sentinel