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Back to Barnet question.

Postby Jimbokav1971 » 24 Apr 2013, 09:02

Right. Before I start, please let me point out that this is a general question and not intended simply to rile some of you. I would really like a comment from someone close to the heart of the Trust, but also from just general fans who feel strongly about the issue too.

We are moving to the Hive. (If I was Rafa I might be tempted to say Fact! after that). The Hive isn't in Barnet and never will be. The question I saw PF asked the other day was does this mean that we will lose our identity a little. I think the honest answer is probably.. yes. We will no longer be in Barnet proper and not even be in the Borough of Barnet. Does that mean that we won't be Barnet though? Will we somehow instantly transform into Harrow or North London Bees or something else? Do you really think so?

These are all little points though. The 3 big questions that I want to ask the Trust and those involved in the Back 2 Barnet campaign are....

1. How?

2. Why?

3. Where.

The how is simple really. How do you suggest that we relocate back to within the LBB within the next 10 years when the people with the power to make this happen, (the LBB), seem to have absolutely no interest in making this happen, (or even allowing it to happen). I'm not trying to rile anyone. I honestly just don't see an alternative being suggested and it's more of an ideal than a plan. Yeah of course I would prefer that Barnet FC was still in Barnet. I would even go so far as to say that I wished we were staying at Underhill but that we were able to transform it into a ground that was more in keeping with our current Football league status. As a money-maker it has been simply rubbish for a long time. You can't get in. You can't buy anything when you are in. etc etc etc.

The why is less simple. I think that if we stay up this season, then next season there might be a chance that our average attendance for 2013/14 will be higher than 2012/13 at Underhill. I have absolutely nothing to back this up with, (no different to those of you who claim that attendances will plummet after relocation), but I base it partly on the feel-good factor and an upturn in both style and results since ED took over, and also the standard of facilities that will be on offer. I honestly think that people will want to "just have a look" and be hooked. I know that some of you will refuse to go, and even though I don't agree with you, I do understand how you feel, (especially some of the guys who have sat/stood in the same place with the same people for decades). To not go seems.... well it seems as if you are cutting off your nose to spite your face. What do you plan on doing every 2nd Saturday next season? Shopping with the wife? Borehamwood FC? Do you see what I mean. Jesus, some of you are gonna be lost without your bi-weekly fix. Have you really thought this through? Getting back to the "Why?" question though, assuming that we can make more money from fewer customers at the Hive, (a given), and assuming we retain our Football league status, then what would be the driving force behind another upheaval in 10 years time?

Lastly is very complicated and not easily answered at all. It's where? If you want to come Back 2 Barnet, then where exactly do you plan for this to happen? Underhill? It's like flogging a dead horse isn't it? South Underhill? Is that a realistic proposal? I have lost track to be honest. Ground sharing with the egg-chasers at Copthall after they agree that their plastic pitch is an abomination? Are there any other options?

I'm really not trying to be argumentative but I just don't hear anything constructive being put forward by anyone. Had there been a way, well then I think we wouldn't be moving outside the Borough. I'm not sure what some of you think is going to change that will allow this to happen in the future.

I'm far from an expert on this subject so feel free to point out anything that might help me understand where you are coming from, but to me this whole thing looks like a.... well it looks more like a pipe-dream than any realistic plan to move Back 2 Barnet.
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Re: Back to Barnet question.

Postby j4barnet » 24 Apr 2013, 10:24

I don't speak for the Supporters Trust or those organising the Back 2 Barnet campaign but my position is this.

1.We only have permission to be at the Hive for 10 years, this does not solve the long-term ground issue
2. Capacity at the Hive is 5,100 (smaller than Underhill) and therefore does not meet the aspirations of the club or the supporters (say if we want to reach the Championship). I assume there is limited scope to expand the Hive stadium. Having Edgar Davids as head coach clearly demonstrates these ambitions!
3. The football club (Tony) has made it clear the move to the Hive is temporary and that his ambition is for the clubs permanent home to be in Barnet, a view the Supporters Trust shares.

This is why I am supporting the campaign, whether or not it will be successful is dependent on the support it receives, both politically and financially.

As they say, it's better to try (again) and fail, then never try at all!

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Re: Back to Barnet question.

Postby ninestein » 24 Apr 2013, 11:00

I'm with you there Josh. We have to back the campaign and encourage others to really buy into it.
We keep hearing about re-visiting the South Underhill idea (which in my view is the best location for the club, and should be evaluated again now that the cricket club is no longer operating).
The fundraising target is quite clearly a great step forward and demonstrates the intention to do SOMETHING, but I believe when our fans get to see some tangible plans and sketches of what we hope to build and where, the support for the idea will really start to snowball.
And although the Hive is not in Barnet, it's much better to be there in the interim than groundsharing with the likes of Orient or Watford.
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Re: Back to Barnet question.

Postby BeesKnees » 24 Apr 2013, 11:43

Hi Jimbo, I'm in full support of the campaign and genuinely feel it is the best way of persuading those in power to come on board. Moving to the Hive may hopefully allow a better level of dialogue betwean Supporters, council and club and so allow both sides to step back and take a breather. Underhill is still in barnets hands and will hopefully be used to leverage a return. The club and supporters trust aim to resurrect the south underhill option seems a good one and something we should all be able to fight for.
The why is simple to me, we are Barnet FC with a temporary lease to play elsewhere. Not the first club to leave it's home and later return to a new\rebuilt stadium (Brighton, Charlton). We are the driving force.
The where is already decided
http://www.bfctrust.co.uk/#/news/456441 ... ll/5047104
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Re: Back to Barnet question.

Postby Mr Smart » 24 Apr 2013, 11:45

I run a football team in Harrow and 5 of my players live in Camrose Avenue or nearby, some of them even have gym memberships at the Hive. They've all said that with Davids in charge they would definitely come and watch Barnet. Extrapolate those 5 over 10-20,000 locals and who knows how many will show up.

I think one of the things we've underestimated is the curiosity factor of the local people in Edgware/Canons Park especially with the Davids factor, something which residents local to Underhill seem to have taken for granted. For the residents local to the Hive this is new and exciting and if we stay up and the football continues to improve then we can hook these in. Also, the more local people visit the site, the more will join the gym. That's all income to be pumped into the team.
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Re: Back to Barnet question.

Postby teatime_bee » 24 Apr 2013, 12:21

Excuse my ignorance,but I have a question too. We have tried so long to get a purpose built stadium in Barnet but have had numerous attempts turned down by the Council. How will the Back 2 Barnet campaign differ? Isn't it a waste of £75,000 to put together an application for South Underhill if it is going to be turned down by the council?

Does making the Cricket club a 'community value asset' negate the fact it is on green belt land and means we can proceed with building on that land?
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Re: Back to Barnet question.

Postby Hiveoccupier » 24 Apr 2013, 13:50

Jimbokav1971 wrote:Right. Before I start, please let me point out that this is a general question and not intended simply to rile some of you. I would really like a comment from someone close to the heart of the Trust, but also from just general fans who feel strongly about the issue too.

We are moving to the Hive. (If I was Rafa I might be tempted to say Fact! after that). The Hive isn't in Barnet and never will be. The question I saw PF asked the other day was does this mean that we will lose our identity a little. I think the honest answer is probably.. yes. We will no longer be in Barnet proper and not even be in the Borough of Barnet. Does that mean that we won't be Barnet though? Will we somehow instantly transform into Harrow or North London Bees or something else? Do you really think so?

These are all little points though. The 3 big questions that I want to ask the Trust and those involved in the Back 2 Barnet campaign are....

1. How?

2. Why?

3. Where.

The how is simple really. How do you suggest that we relocate back to within the LBB within the next 10 years when the people with the power to make this happen, (the LBB), seem to have absolutely no interest in making this happen, (or even allowing it to happen). I'm not trying to rile anyone. I honestly just don't see an alternative being suggested and it's more of an ideal than a plan. Yeah of course I would prefer that Barnet FC was still in Barnet. I would even go so far as to say that I wished we were staying at Underhill but that we were able to transform it into a ground that was more in keeping with our current Football league status. As a money-maker it has been simply rubbish for a long time. You can't get in. You can't buy anything when you are in. etc etc etc.

The why is less simple. I think that if we stay up this season, then next season there might be a chance that our average attendance for 2013/14 will be higher than 2012/13 at Underhill. I have absolutely nothing to back this up with, (no different to those of you who claim that attendances will plummet after relocation), but I base it partly on the feel-good factor and an upturn in both style and results since ED took over, and also the standard of facilities that will be on offer. I honestly think that people will want to "just have a look" and be hooked. I know that some of you will refuse to go, and even though I don't agree with you, I do understand how you feel, (especially some of the guys who have sat/stood in the same place with the same people for decades). To not go seems.... well it seems as if you are cutting off your nose to spite your face. What do you plan on doing every 2nd Saturday next season? Shopping with the wife? Borehamwood FC? Do you see what I mean. Jesus, some of you are gonna be lost without your bi-weekly fix. Have you really thought this through? Getting back to the "Why?" question though, assuming that we can make more money from fewer customers at the Hive, (a given), and assuming we retain our Football league status, then what would be the driving force behind another upheaval in 10 years time?

Lastly is very complicated and not easily answered at all. It's where? If you want to come Back 2 Barnet, then where exactly do you plan for this to happen? Underhill? It's like flogging a dead horse isn't it? South Underhill? Is that a realistic proposal? I have lost track to be honest. Ground sharing with the egg-chasers at Copthall after they agree that their plastic pitch is an abomination? Are there any other options?

I'm really not trying to be argumentative but I just don't hear anything constructive being put forward by anyone. Had there been a way, well then I think we wouldn't be moving outside the Borough. I'm not sure what some of you think is going to change that will allow this to happen in the future.

I'm far from an expert on this subject so feel free to point out anything that might help me understand where you are coming from, but to me this whole thing looks like a.... well it looks more like a pipe-dream than any realistic plan to move Back 2 Barnet.



All legitimate questions Jim and I will try to give some straightforward answers without going over ground that is more trampled than our pitch looked at just gone 5pm last Saturday.

Q. How are we going to get back to Barnet.

We need to convince the powers that be in the LBB that it is right for Barnet to have a fit for purpose stadium for the football club and that means getting the community behind the campaign and making it clear that they expect their elected representatives to act on their wishes. The move to the Hive may help to bring into sharper focus exactly what the club mean't to the community and what they are losing. There is however little point in making the case unless we are going to follow through and at some stage a planning application has to be submitted before the powers to be will make a decision - getting the money together to pay for the application is a clear demonstration of intent and a more significant demonstration of the strength of support than mere words or names on petitions.

Q. Why ?

Without getting into the very important emotional and historical aspects of the issue the simple answer is that apart from the fact that we only have agreement to play at the Hive for 10 years it isn't big enough for the aspirations we have for our club - if last Saturday's game had been played at the Hive 835 of the people who got in would not have been able to get a ticket. Providing we keep our league status next week the platform for future success that the club has laid with its investment in the Hive positions us well to grow as a club in both success and supporter attendances and we should want and expect many many more occasions when crowds in excess of 5,176 people want to watch the games - surely we wouldn't want 100s or 1000s of our fellow supporters locked out of significant games on an ongoing basis.

Q. Where ?

South Underhill is where the Trust and the Club have agreed to focus the effort one because there is the space, there is the history of having a stadium on green belt there and it is where the vast majority of our supporters dream of having the stadium they want for their club- why pursue any other objective until and unless we have exhausted this one.

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Re: Back to Barnet question.

Postby becbee » 24 Apr 2013, 14:17

Derek,

TK has made planning applications in the past which have failed. What makes you believe that a fresh application would stand a chance of success now? I don't wish to sound negative and I'd like Barnet to be back in the borough as much as anyone - but I don't see the point in trying to raise such a huge sum as £75,000 towards a planning application unless there is some reason to believe it could succeed. Teatime Bee raises pretty much the same point.

The other thing is, if you do feel that a planning application could succeed then it would help your chances of success in raising funds if you were to convince us skeptics! Nobody is going to pay over good money if they don't have faith in the outcome.
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Re: Back to Barnet question.

Postby Moonchild_Bee » 24 Apr 2013, 14:33

My optimism for this is the ownership of Underhill. The council will not want Underhill to become a rotting carcass that becomes a target of arson and slowly rots away. Not good considering the prime location - the council tax payers, and the possibility of adding hundreds of new council tax payers. Suddenly we take emotion out of the equation, maybe Barnet Council can see a beneficial deal for them, the people of the borough, and of secondary importance to them, the club.

After all, the residents, and any new residents cannot complain about a football club being planted on their doorstep. I imagine Barnet Council will want to avoid these scenes desperately:

Image
Image
Image

I'm going for the Daily Mail approach :whistle:
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Re: Back to Barnet question.

Postby Hiveoccupier » 24 Apr 2013, 14:52

Becbee,

Thanks for you question I totally agree that if everyone gets behind the campaign it has more chance of success and it is therefore important to address this sort of question.

The reason we and Tony think it has more chance of success is because of the fact that it would be funds raised by supporters and the community to get something done and therefore would be a powerful demonstration of a determined public will which would be extremely difficult for the decision makers to ignore. Clearly this doesn't guarantee success and fund raising is only a part of what we have to do. One thing we can guarantee is that if the application is never made there will never be a chance of having the stadium we want, where we want it.

£75,000 is a large amount of money but is it really so huge - if 1,000 supporters donated £5 a month it would be raised by the start of our second season at the Hive - if we average 1,000 giving £10 a month we would have it in place before the next council elections !
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Re: Back to Barnet question.

Postby Devon_Bee » 24 Apr 2013, 15:58

As part of the 'enticement' for local residents in the Underhill area to get behind the South Underhill plan, does anyone have any more pictures of derelict football stadia, like the ones posted by Moonchild_Bee above?
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Re: Back to Barnet question.

Postby edgeog » 24 Apr 2013, 17:46

Am I right to assume that the reason South Underhill failed was because Brass(Barnet residents against second stadium) objected on the grounds of Barnet having 2 stadiums(although Underhill was to be scaled down). If TK totally gives up Underhill, then it would seem to be just a matter of re-locating a couple of hundred yards away, and not having 2 grounds. The impact on all local residents would be no different to what they have been used to up to now. Without a football club in the Underhill area, how long before local shopkeepers feel the pinch from less trade, and can both the Queens Arms and Old Red Lion survive?
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Re: Back to Barnet question.

Postby torontobee » 24 Apr 2013, 17:50

The above is Scarborough - anyone have any pics of Edgware or Hendon? :whistle:
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Re: Back to Barnet question.

Postby petersperoni » 24 Apr 2013, 18:45

I have a question. What would happen to the money if either the £75k target just won't be reached within a reasonable time or something happens rendering the whole exercise pointless? Are/will records be kept detailing who has given what in case there should be a refund?
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Re: Back to Barnet question.

Postby dawat » 24 Apr 2013, 19:00

Hiveoccupier wrote:Becbee,

Thanks for you question I totally agree that if everyone gets behind the campaign it has more chance of success and it is therefore important to address this sort of question.

The reason we and Tony think it has more chance of success is because of the fact that it would be funds raised by supporters and the community to get something done and therefore would be a powerful demonstration of a determined public will which would be extremely difficult for the decision makers to ignore. Clearly this doesn't guarantee success and fund raising is only a part of what we have to do. One thing we can guarantee is that if the application is never made there will never be a chance of having the stadium we want, where we want it.

£75,000 is a large amount of money but is it really so huge - if 1,000 supporters donated £5 a month it would be raised by the start of our second season at the Hive - if we average 1,000 giving £10 a month we would have it in place before the next council elections !


From my own experience, the local Conservative Councillors really do not give a stuff about public opinion unless it affects their own election prospects. The main reason (if not only reason) that the current council and their predecessors were so supportive of the objectors to South Underhill is quite simple. The electoral ward was in the balance with both Labour and Conservative capable of winning the seat, but Labour being more popular in a then recent national census. The Conservatives realised that if they gained the support of the local objectors then it could shift the vote in their favour, which it did. The scene was then set for the ongoing stance by Conservative councils ever since.
Compare this to the result at Hendon FC stadium, which despite considerable local objection, is being handed over by the council for private residential development. Why didn't the council listen to local opinion? Well the ward concerned has a strong Labour electorate and offered the council no obvious benefit to them by listening to the locals.
My point is, that the council will only listen to local people when it benefits them to do so, it has nothing to do with democracy or conscience on their part. Any planning proposal put the current council has to dangle a big carrot in front of them. A big enough carrot for them to ignore BRASS or any other objectors.
:?:
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