Sale of Torquay United to group of local businessmen agreed


A group of local businessmen have completed the purchase of Torquay United Football club, subject to creditor approval.

The Bryn Consortium, made up by Michael Westcott, Mark Bowes-Cavanagh, Tom Allen, Rob Hawes and Simon Robinson, were selected as the preferred bidders for the club by administrators earlier this month.

Their bid had also been backed by managerial legend and former Gulls manager Neil Warnock.

Torquay United has been in administration, and was handed a 10-point deduction, after previous owner Clarke Osborne revealed he was unable to continue funding the team.

The National League South club confirmed that under the terms of the proposed deal with the new ownership all tax debts and trade creditors would be paid in full within six months.

It marks a significant moment for the club and for supporters who at one stage feared the club would fade into non-existence.

Gary Johnson left as manager of the team in February amid the financial struggles of the team. Credit: PA Images

Speaking of the consortium takeover, Michael Westcott said: “We are delighted to have provided a positive outcome for all creditors and provided a future for our beloved football club.

"There is much work to be done in the coming days and weeks, and we will issue a series of updates to supporters next week on the preparations and plans for the forthcoming season.”

In a statement Scott Kippax, joint administrator, and partner at Begbies Traynor’s Exeter office, said: “This proposal is the best possible outcome for creditors, the club, and the fans.

"We are delighted to have reached the point of a conditional sale agreement, which would see all tax debts and trade creditors settled in full in a relatively short period of time.

"It is good news for the long-term future of the club, and we are pleased to be able to present such a favourable proposal to creditors.”

The Torquay United Supporters Trust (TUST) had expressed their desire to be involved in the running of the club but has now welcomed the takeover by The Bryn Consortium.

"TUST is delighted that the Bryn Consortium are the new custodians of Torquay United, heralding a new era for the long-term future of our football club," the organisation said in a statement.

"Now that the consortium’s involvement is official, members of the TUST board are to meet with the Bryn Consortium on Monday to formalise TUST's involvement, and importantly fan engagement, in the running of Torquay United."

The club finished the National League South season in 18th place and there are still questions over which players will stay with the team and who will manage them moving forward next season.