Rhyl football club set to close after 141 years of existence

Belle Vue stadium has hosted football in Rhyl since 1900
Belle Vue stadium has hosted football in Rhyl since 1900

Former Welsh champions Rhyl FC are set to close down after 141 years of existence.

The north Wales side confirmed they had begun a winding-up process, with directors citing the financial impact of the coronavirus crisis.

"This is a very emotional day for everyone connected with the club," said chairman Paul Higginson. "We are all fans and feel it deeply."

The four-time Welsh Cup winners play in the second-tier Cymru North.

Rhyl had warned recently they could not meet financial obligations and required significant external investment to continue.

After a self-imposed deadline passed with "no viable approach", a club statement confirmed that they had initiated the winding-up of the company.

"The difficult decision was taken by the board of directors after considering the financial impact of the suspension of all football activities due to the unprecedented impact of Covid-19, the unwillingness of the ground's owner to consider either a long lease or sale on market terms and the ongoing fixed costs with no income prospects," the statementexternal-link read.

Rhyl said they were offered support from the Football Association of Wales, but it would not be enough to save the club, who recently said they would need £175,000 of investment to offer long-term security.

They added that five approaches of investment were either deemed not viable or were withdrawn without any financial proposal made.

Fans had begun raising money to help a club that can cite the likes of Lee Trundle and Barry Horne as former players, with suggestions already that a 'phoenix' club could be formed.

Higginson added: "The town has a very proud footballing history and a very determined character and I have no doubt that a very strong new club will rise from this low."