Carlisle United Fans' Trust will consider share 'dilution'

Brunton Park
The current owners have been installed at Brunton Park since the summer of 2008

Carlisle United Supporters' Trust chairman Norman Steel has confirmed the group would consider diluting its 25.3% share if it would encourage investment.

Some fans plan to protest against the club's owners and are petitioning for the directors to sell the club.

Cumbrian's manager Keith Curle has expressed his concern at the unrest.

When asked if the trust would dilute its share in club, Steel said:" Without a doubt, subject to the deal being right for the club."

Talking to BBC Radio Cumbria, Steel continued: "The trust has 25.3% and in company law it apparently has the power to block special resolutions.

"But I'll point out here and now it has never had to use it. The trust paid £800,000 for the shares that belong to the fans and the community."

Keith Curle
Carlisle United manager Keith Curle has said the club needs to avoid infighting

The board of directors have been in control of Carlisle United since 2008, when local businessmen David Allen, Andrew Jenkins, John Nixon and Steven Pattison took over that summer.

Former owner Fred Story publicly wrote off a £1.1m loan to the club in December, in his own bid to attract new injections of funds.

Steel, who sits on the League Two side's board as part of his responsibilities, confirmed businessman Andrew Lapping - a Carlisle United fan - is a potential investor.

"It's well versed that Andrew is interested in investing in the club, and those meetings were cordial," Steel continued.

"It is there to protect the football club within the realms of the community as a whole, and we've held several meetings already."

"They were positive in the sense that dialogue was opened up."

United supporters have targeted the next home game against Mansfield Town on 31 January as a suitable date for a protest against the club.

However, there are two away fixtures in League Two to come before that match, away to AFC Wimbledon and Bury.

Steel understands why the supporters have opted to demonstrate but believes circumstances will dictate whether any action goes ahead.

"I can hardly say no to that because I myself took part in one in 2001 against the then-owner Michael Knighton," Steel added.

"I paraded around Brunton Park holding a banner, so I can understand why they want to do that.

"But this game is so fickle, two wins on the trot and who's to say whether that demonstration would take place or not."

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