Vow to get fishermen’s club ‘back on its feet’

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THE FISHERMEN’S Club’s new treasurer has vowed to turn the struggling business around and be ‘open and transparent’ with the members.

Recently, the Herald reported the social club on Royal Parade was on the brink of closure. With membership down by almost half on last year and bar takings at an all time low, the club’s future was uncertain.

A meeting was held last Thursday to discuss the future of the Fishermen’s and chairman Tony Laycock resigned at the meeting because he felt discussions were ‘going round in circles’.

Mr Laycock, who had put his own money in to keep the club running over the last two years, said, “They weren’t coming to any solutions so I handed the keys back.

“I regret resigning and I may have acted hastily but I am still a member and I will do anything I can to help the club.”

However, the club’s new treasurer Richard Field, who came on board last week, is optimistic he can turn things around.

Mr Field has management experience, helped the Parade Bowls Club and is a successful bed and breakfast owner at the Garfield Guest House, which is near the Fishermen’s Club.

Mr Field said, “I am now driving a programme through to get the club back in its feet.”

The business man says he is looking at generating more income for the club and will be offering the function room to members and non-members for just £50 to cover staff costs.

He is also hoping new members will come on board and current members will spend money behind the bar and offer help and advice.

He said, “I am working on a business plan and then I will draw up an action plan.

“The club needs to be run by a management group with some business acumen.

“We want members’ support – it is not a one man band.”

Richard hopes to get the Fishermen’s, which is currently running at a loss, on an even keel before he starts making improvements and turning the club back in to a profit-making business. Re-opening the once-popular restaurant is included in Richard’s medium to long term plan.