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No place to Hyde from taxman but fans save the day

This is a story from the FSF archive – the FSF and SD merged to become the FSA in 2019.

Last week heard that Hyde United were due to fold after HMRC decided to swing the tax axe. The Blue Square North side faced being wound up after the High Court decided they wouldn’t be able to find the £120,000 or so that would satisfy the taxman.

It’s a sad day whenever a team goes under. Regardless of how many fans a club might have those who follow them week in, week out feel just as passionately as any of those at Premier or Football League clubs. That shouldn’t be forgotten by anyone and we were just on our way to writing our eulogies to the club when something amazing happened.

Firstly a mystery benefactor stumped up around £70,000 meaning that, after a few other donations were taken into account, the club was ‘only’ £35,000 off the total required. Not much for you average top-flight pro maybe but still a massive sum for normal fans to raise.

Hyde United supporters weren’t to be put off however and individual fans began donating all they could afford over the weekend, helping the club edge ever closer to survival.

Come Monday they then set off to shake their buckets outside Eastlands before Manchester City’s Premier League game with West Ham. A further £8,000 was raised there – hats off to all the City fans who donated.

Credit to City too who made all of Hyde’s volunteers, which included the management team and some of the players, welcome. “The genorosity and goodwill from the stewards and officials was overwhelming and shows that not all Premier League clubs ignore their smaller neighbours,” Luke Edwards of United FC Supporters’ Club told us.

Yesterday afternoon Hyde United successfully rescinded the winding up order made against them last Wednesday – brilliant news.

The fans can breathe a massive sigh of relief and the club can honour their upcoming fixtures – starting on Saturday with Farsley Celtic who’ve had their own battles with HMRC.

This should also act as a cautionary tale to others – for some time Hyde’s fans had been telling us of vast overspending on players by the club’s backers. When they pulled the plug, the club was stuck with contracts they simply couldn’t afford.

We really hope Hyde United FC Supporters’ Club can work with our friends at Supporters’ Direct and secure representation on the club’s board, who we’ve put them in touch with.

If their money is good enough to save the club, it’s good enough for a seat in the boardroom!

If you’d like to donate to Hyde United FC Supporters’ Club or go along to one of their meetings click here.

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Funding partners

  • The Football Association
  • Premier Leage Fans Fund

Partners

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  • Co-operatives UK
  • FSE
  • Kick It Out
  • Level Playing Field
  • Living Wage Foundation
  • SD Europe