Thursday 23 November 2017

Bray to pursue stadium name sponsor amid club makeover

Eddie Cox of Bray Wanderers FC
Eddie Cox of Bray Wanderers FC
Daniel McDonnell

Daniel McDonnell

Bray Wanderers are pursuing a naming sponsor for the Carlisle Grounds as part of their plans to turn the League of Ireland side into a community owned organisation.

The Seagulls are restructuring their club with a view to reducing debt levels, creating a more viable business model and becoming a bigger presence in their locality.

A new company, Bray Wanderers Community Football Club (BWCFC), has been established, with the Seagulls stating that "it will raise funds for the football team, pay down the club's debt and finance projects to develop amenities for the local community at Wanderers' stadium, the Carlisle Grounds."

It added that the club will also be seeking planning permission for a gym, meeting rooms and all-weather training pitch at the stadium.

The advisory council that will operate the company will consist of an official from Bray Town Council, an elected representative, and members from the Wicklow League, the Bray Supporters Club, other local football and sports clubs and the wider business community. Club president Philip Hannigan and chairman Eddie Cox are among the founding members.

"The old way of running the football club wasn't working. A new business model was needed – and we believe this is it," said Hannigan.

"The reception we've received from the various stakeholders in the new company has been tremendous – there's a sense of excitement."

Bray Chamber of Commerce president Rory Benville, another founding director, added: "Bray Wanderers are a relatively untapped amenity and can contribute immensely to the business community.

"Having a vibrant club brings social and economic benefits. Success on the pitch and increased community involvement can help drive economic activity off the pitch."

Irish Independent

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