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"Once in a lifetime opportunity" for the Railwaymen

Crewe Alexandra fans have a “once in a lifetime opportunity” to buy a significant chunk of the club as its current owner looks to sell up.

Led by the Railwaymen Supporters’ Society, Crewe Alexandra’s fledgling supporter group, fans are looking to raise £250,000 via community shares to buy one-seventh of the club by early 2020.

The club’s current major shareholder Norman Hassall has now signed the required contracts allowing the sale of his shares in Crewe Alexandra, which will be sold to fans and six other major investors. The structure of the sale will ensure that no single investor owns more than 12.5% of the Gresty Road club.

The Railwaymen’s Dave Tomlinson told us: “It’s a once in a lifetime opportunity to get a stake in the club.

“If we raise the money this will give us a seat at the table – a chance to take fan issues, fan ideas to board level directly.

“There’s no doubt a stake in the club will help us take it forward and help supporters shape the future of the club.”

So far, The Railwaymen have raised more than £55,000 towards the £250,000 target as the Cheshire club are enjoying a good spell on the pitch – currently chasing promotion and sitting fourth in League Two.

“It’s an ambitious target, but a realistic target,” Dave said. “Obviously Crewe’s not the most affluent area so we’re not asking for people’s money lightly, but this is a tremendous opportunity which we may never get again.”

The Railwaymen are currently offering two packages for supporters to buy community shares – one at £250 and one at £1,000 with the option to invest further. Dave insists though, that supporters won’t be able to buy more influence and the process will remain democratic.

“We’re also looking at grants, talking to supportive businesses,” Dave said. “We’re looking at everything but no matter what people invest it will remain one person, one vote.

“It’s a big thing to take on for any group, let alone a fairly young supporters’ group such as ourselves but we’ve got a lot of expertise and experience in our ranks to draw on.

“We’ve also had a lot of valuable guidance from the FSA. No doubt we’ll make mistakes along the way, but we’re learning as we go. It’s a challenge, but we’re optimistic we can hit the £250,000 target.”

Funding partners

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  • Premier Leage Fans Fund

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