PA Position Available

I am STILL in search of new staff to work alongside me as a personal assistant. This is a fulfilling role that gives you the chance to make a difference to someone else’s life. I am looking for someone who is punctual, reliable, a team player and can be flexible. Word processing skills and a full driving licence are ABSOLUTELY essential to help me get the most out of my life. 

There are between 16-30 hours available, though there is the potential for more hours to cover holidays and sickness. This is an ideal opportunity for a student looking to gain experience in social care sector or any empathetic individual who wants to put their time to good use.

If you are interested in this opportunity, or know someone who may be, please get in touch via the Contact page, Facebook or Twitter. Good luck.

***

Female Personal Assistant (Sex Discrimination Act Section 7 (2) (b) (ii) applies, Wrexham (0103).

Rate of Pay: Flat Rate: £10.00 per hour  – Weekly Hours: To be discussed at interview.

About the employer:

I am a sociable 43-year-old man living in the Wrexham area. I use a wheelchair and live with Friedreich’s Ataxia. Subsequently, I require support to remain independent. I am an author and disabled activist with a good sense of humour. I remain ambitious and adventurous. I enjoy company and I like to go out socialising.

Summary of duties:

To provide support to access various social and recreational activities. You must therefore have a clean driving license. You will need to support with personal care, including toileting, washing, dressing and preparing meals. I am a very creative individual and require support to develop my ideas. Due to my poor dexterity I struggle to type quickly – as a writer this is most frustrating – therefore you should have good word-processing skills.

A full driving license is also required as I often attend meetings throughout the North Wales and North West area.

Support with gardening and household tasks.

The post will include 5.6 weeks paid annual leave (pro-rata)

Police records check funded by the employer will be required.

The person I am looking for:

The ideal person will have a good sense of humour and should also display plenty of energy, initiative and enthusiasm. In addition, applicants should be patient and trustworthy with a flexible and empathetic attitude. A positive attitude and clear understanding of confidentiality is essential. Promoting my independence will be the main focus for any support.

You must be reliable, friendly, flexible and punctual.

Times Required:

There are specific hours available, which may be about to increase as I apply for 2:1 support.  At the moment, I am able to officially offer between 16 and 30 hours of employment, specific times and dates to be arranged at interview. 

Holiday and Sickness Cover is also available regularly, so variable hours will be on offer.

ENIL Press Release #IDDP

Brussels, 3 December – To mark the International Day of Persons with Disabilities, the European Network on Independent Living – ENIL calls on Governments to stop delaying deinstitutionalisation reforms and start providing opportunities for independent living and being included in the community for all disabled people, as a matter of priority. Public funds, especially those coming from the European Union, must be used to support personal assistance, accessible housing, family support and mainstream services for all – not for the continued segregation of disabled Europeans.

The COVID-19 pandemic has given us another proof why institutions of all names and sizes are not suitable for people to inhabit. A total of 83% of those who responded to the COVID-19 Disability Rights Monitor survey stated that Governments have taken no or limited measures during the pandemic to protect the lives, health and safety of disabled people living in institutions. Almost 70% of people reported they have been isolated in institutions, banned from leaving, and up to 84% have not been able to receive any visitors for months. Death rates in institutions have ranged from 19 to 72 percent of the overall COVID fatalities.

ENIL’s first Independent Living Survey has shown that, whereas 17 (out of 42) European countries have deinstitutionalisation strategies, 8 are considered by disabled people as inadequate and 6 as requiring improvement. In 22 (out of 42) countries, disabled people are aware of EU Funds being used to renovate or build new institutions or segregated services.

While we are being told that change takes time – for many disabled people, the situation has been changing for the worse.

This is why ENIL has teamed up with Portuguese Members of the European Parliament, Marisa Matias and José Gusmão (GUE/NGL), to encourage the European Commission to start fulfilling its obligations under the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD), to prohibit and sanction investments in segregated settings. The animated video, produced in English and Portuguese, explains in plain language that using EU funds to put disabled people into any form of institution – be it large or small – is a violation of human rights. Our aim is to encourage more monitoring and oversight over EU funded projects – by disabled people’s organisations, NGOs, but also the general public.

Let us celebrate this International Day by taking action and telling Governments: Time’s Up! The impact of the pandemic on disabled people, the recently established CRPD Committee working group on deinstitutionalisation, and the renewed focus on institutions as death traps, provide a unique opportunity for a global push for independent living for all. Let us work together and use it.

Watch the EU Funds for Our Rights video with English and Portuguese subtitles. Download the Covid-19 Disability Rights Monitor global report.

Disability Wales Press Release #IDDP

PRESS RELEASE:  76% of Disabled People Surveyed ARE NOT CONFIDENT THAT THEIR RIGHTS WILL IMPROVE IN THE NEXT FIVE YEARS.

Research from Disability Wales has shown that 76% of disabled people surveyed are not confident that their rights will improve over the next five years. The same survey showed that 68% of disabled people did not feel that their rights are currently adequately enforced and that 57% of disabled people do not feel like their rights are protected in work.

The survey was conducted as part of “Bring Us Our Rights: The Disabled People’s Manifesto”, which highlights many key areas for advancing equality for disabled people and as well as offering policy solutions. The manifesto is being launched ahead of the upcoming Senedd Cymru elections next May.

Disability Wales is calling for the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Disabled People (UNCRDP) to be incorporated in Welsh law. The UN Treaty comprehensively outlines disabled people’s rights whether in education, employment, independent living or health. Incorporation would mean that disabled people’s rights would have to be taken into account regarding every law enacted in the Senedd. It would also provide a framework through which Ministers would develop policy and public bodies and others would deliver services that impact on the lives of disabled people

Rhian Davies, Chief Executive of Disability Wales states:

Disability Wales has been calling for the incorporation of the UNCRDP for a long time now and these findings show why. Many disabled people in Wales don’t feel that they are being listened to by those in power and are concerned that their rights are not on the agenda let alone being protected.”

“The coronavirus pandemic, whereby disabled people have comprised 68%* of deaths in Wales has exposed the stark inequalities faced by disabled people in society and widespread instances of their human rights being in breach or potentially breached. The Disabled People’s Manifesto has brought together disabled people from across Wales to give their views and talk about their priorities. It provides a vital tool for the next Welsh Government to help influence and inform their programme and ensure that the rights of 22% of the population are upheld.”

One disabled member has stated that:

“It’s not just a health and social problem. It’s everywhere. The whole system that we are still currently living in […] it’s out of date. Disabled people were not considered when it was being invented.”

The Manifesto includes practical solutions that would ensure that the UNCRDP is implemented in practice, including:

  • Inclusion of the history of disabled people and the Social Model of Disability in the curriculum.
  • Making Disability Equality Training mandatory at all levels of Government and public bodies.
  • Support the establishment of a disabled people’s organisation in every local authority in Wales.
  • Ensure the economic contract with employers and business in Wales incorporates enforceable measures to tackle the disability employment gap.
  • Protect the rights of disabled people in the workplace through ensuring access to discrimination advice services.

Bring Us Our Rights: Disabled People’s Manifesto will be launched on Zoom on 3rd December, the International Day of Disabled People,  at an event attended by the Deputy Minister and Chief Whip Jane Hutt MS, Chairperson of the Cross Party Group on Disability Mark Isherwood MS and Jane Dodds former MP for Brecon and Radnor.

*ENDS*

Staying Strong and Proud! Celebrating Deaf and disabled people’s resistance

download

THURSDAY, 3 DECEMBER 2020

7 – 9pm

Facebook Live

with British Sign Language and live captions

On International Day of Disabled People, DPAC and the Peoples Assembly Against Austerity will be co-hosting an extended evening of politics, conversation, music and comedy to celebrate Deaf and disabled people’s resistance from austerity and welfare reform to Covid-19 and beyond.

With speakers including: Cherylee Houston (actor), Touretteshero (comedian and campaigner), John McDonnell, Paula Peters (DPAC) and Ellen Morrison (Disabled members’ representative, Labour party NEC), Andy Mitchell (ImaJSAClaimant) and Dave Allan (TUC Disabled Workers Committee and Unite) among many others.

Comedy from Laurence Clark; Music from from RockinPaddy and Rita Resistance

Co-hosted by Ellen Clifford (DPAC and author of The War on Disabled People) and Laura Pidcock (People’s Assembly).

If ten years of grinding attacks targeted at disabled people in the name of austerity and welfare reform weren’t enough to contend with, then came Covid-19. Almost two thirds of Covid deaths have been disabled people with excess deaths on top. Alongside the fear and the grief disabled people have also had to endure a mainstream narrative that presents our deaths, like those of older people, as somehow inevitable and not counting the same as other people’s – by implication, that our lives are of lesser worth.But disabled campaigners are not letting any of that stop us from doing what we always do during Disability History Month: celebrating Deaf, Disability and Mad Pride and reaffirming our commitment to ending all forms of oppression in the struggle for a better world.

The year 2020 marks 25 years since the passage of the Disability Discrimination Act. Its also ten years since Disabled People Against Cuts was set up to oppose the disproportionate impact of austerity and welfare reform on disabled people. This year we’ve reached out to allies in other campaigns and trade unions to join us for International Day of Disabled People and share in our anger and tears, pride, reminiscence and solidarity. We’d be delighted if you can join us too.

Whatever you do to celebrate #IDDP we’d love to hear what you’re up to – please send messages and photos to @dis_ppl_protest / @pplsassembly.

Also speaking: Sarah Woolley (General Secretary, Bakers Food and Allied Workers Union), Charlie Clarke (The World Transformed), Clara Paillard (President of PCS Culture Sector), Andy Greene and Roger Lewis (DPAC Steering group), Sabina Lahur and Raymond Johnson (People First and DPAC), Mark Dunk (DPAC member and Unite activist), Martha Foulds (DPAC), Paul Ntulila (Inclusion London)

List of supporters: The World Transformed; Bakers and Allied Food Workers Union; People Before Profit.

A million dead end streets…

I am not liking this new WordPress design that is highlighted in the YouTube video below.

You won’t even realise that there has been a change, but the editor in which writers create posts, has been radically updated for the worse. Why do companies have to change things, just for the hell of it? The classic editor was simple to use, but this new one seems more of a hassle than anything. It is discouraging me from adding new blogs and I am seriously considering leaving WordPress for another blog platform.

The trouble is, I do not have the technical knowhow to move the content from here to another platform. I could try to get to grips with the new editor, but I just do not have the time at the moment as I am still waiting for my social care reassessment results. I truly am stuck at the moment, and not living my life in the way I choose as is my right under the Social Services and Wellbeing Act.

Every way I turn at the moment, I seem to run in to a dead end. Please excuse my negative self indulgence, but after six years of tireless work to save and promote Independent Living for disabled people across Wales, through the #SaveWILG campaign, I would have expected an improvement in my support.

Part of the current problem is that I am struggling to find adequate support staff. This is the same problem faced by disabled people across the UK and it just highlights what a hostile and uncaring society we live in.

***

Ryan Reynolds and Rob McElhenney want Wrexham to be ‘global force’

The following article is from BBC Sport online and can be viewed in its original form by clicking here.

It really is quite unbelievable that two Hollywood superstars want to invest their money into Wrexham AFC and turn them into a “global force”.

I should be really excited as a lifelong supporter of the club. However, I also happen to be a proud socialite with a healthy dislike of plastic club created by money. I am happy supporting a club in the lower leagues and have little interest in giving my support to a manufactured outfit.

To be fair to them, Ryan Reynolds and Rob McElhenney gave a good performance in the virtual meeting at the weekend. Details of this meeting can be found below, but as a historian who is compiling a book looking back at the club’s years in the Football League from 1921-2008, I am finding it difficult to welcome radical new investment that will fundamentally change the nature of being a Wrexham supporter.

There are many positives that come with the proposed investment, but there are also a few drawbacks. I am not a hypocrite and cannot support a club that is artificially fueled by filthy lucre. Having said that, I would be happy to speak to Reynolds and McElhenney to give them a greater understanding of our club.

To me, I am not really interested in winning at all costs. Sure I want to see good football being played and the club restoring their Football League status, but give me mid-table obscurity in the lower leagues any day, as opposed to flying high just because we can afford it.

***

Hollywood star Ryan Reynolds wants to turn National League club Wrexham into a “global force”.

Reynolds and fellow actor Rob McElhenney want to buy the club from fan owners Wrexham Supporters Trust.

Deadpool star Reynolds and It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia’s McElhenney shared their vision with members of the trust on Sunday.

“This is the third-oldest club on the planet and we don’t see why it can’t have a global appeal,” said Reynolds.

“We want Wrexham to be a global force.”

He was speaking during a virtual presentation to trust members, after which the duo issued a mission statement in which they pledged to “always beat” arch-rivals Chester.

Reynolds and McElhenney also pledged:

  • “To protect the heritage that has made Wrexham AFC and the Racecourse Ground such a special place to watch football for the last 156 years.
  • “To reinforce the values, traditions and legacy of this community. We understand and respect the intense loyalty and love for this club and how it’s woven into the fabric of the town and its supporters.
  • “To use our resources to grow the exposure of the club. Of course, this would be in concert with protecting the heart and spirit of a community-led historical icon. But why can’t the third-oldest club in the world have a global appeal?
  • “To reward the faith of the supporters who have stood by Wrexham AFC through its history by putting everything we have towards what all fans want most for their club, and that is to… win, win, win.”

Reynolds added: “Our intention is to become part of the Wrexham story rather than Wrexham becoming part of our story.”

Reynolds also said he and McElhenney intend to attend games when work commitments allowed them to.

The pair set out their plans for the club at the virtual meeting after Trust members voted 95% in favour of holding talks with the pair.

They also answered fans’ questions during the online gathering and members of Wrexham Supporters Trust told BBC Wales they were impressed by the presentation.

One enthusiastic supporter of the proposed deal said: “They’ve done a lot of homework. The presentation was unbelievable. They said everything you wanted to hear as a football supporter. It’s like dreamland.”

Another member who is more sceptical about the deal said the meeting had been very “slick” with the two Hollywood stars giving a “good” presentation.

“I’m less negative, but am still worried about what happens when they leave.”

Club president Dixie McNeill was also positive about the proposals and impressed by the two actors.

“They’re pretty young, they are really alert about the football club and where they want it to go,” the former Wrexham player and manager told BBC Radio Wales Breakfast programme.

“They were positive and I think the fans were looking for that, they were talking about getting the club as global as they possibly can.

“After all the time we’ve been run by the supporters association, I think it’s time now for the club to move forward.

“The Trust have run the club brilliantly but we’ve had no money and everybody knows in football you need money to move forward, to buy players, and this a great opportunity for us.”

Dixie McNeil
Dixie McNeil was Wrexham manager between 1985 and 1989 having also played for the club.

Any potential takeover could lead to £2m being invested in the club, which has been in fan ownership since 2011.

More than 2,000 trust members can vote to decide the club’s future and for the resolutions to be approved, 75% of members who respond to the ballot must vote in favour.

Trust members had received voting packs ahead of the presentation detailing the next steps of the proposed takeover bid by The R.R McReynolds Company.

Members will be able to vote from Monday until Sunday, 15 November and a decision is expected the following day.

Director Spencer Harris would then expect the club could be in the hands of Reynolds and McElhenney within a few weeks.

“If the decision is to proceed with the sale then we will finalise a sale of purchase agreement,” Harris told BBC Radio Wales Breakfast.

“They will need to go and get approval from the league and from the FA for the takeover to go through and I’d expect that all between sale and purchase to take a few short weeks and at that point a transfer of ownership would take place.”

Harris, like the rest of the board, is taking a neutral stance rather than giving trust members guidance on the vote. However he outlined to the programme his respect for the Hollywood pair and their approach.

“What I would say is that the people we are talking about build their careers based on reputation and that should give a lot of comfort to Wrexham fans,” he told the programme on Monday morning.

“As part of the deal we retain the headline lease of the Racecourse Stadium, so the Racecourse remains secure and long term within the control of the community. So there are many safeguards but ultimately these are two people who not only are successful in their day jobs as actors, but have very successful external business careers as well with Rob having just sold his Aviation gin business to Diageo for quite some many millions of dollars.”

The north Wales club, formed in 1864, play in English football’s fifth tier following their relegation from the Football League in 2008.

WLG Statement on Suspension of Jeremy Corbyn

“Welsh Labour Grassroots condemns the suspension from party membership of Jeremy Corbyn and the removal of the whip from him. 

In our view, Jeremy’s statement on the EHRC report, which apparently prompted this decision, contains nothing that would justify such action. As always, he was unequivocal about the unacceptability of antisemitic views and behaviour and about the need for Labour to rebuild trust with Jewish communities.

His statement fully respected the seriousness of the EHRC report, as does Welsh Labour Grassroots, acknowledging the failings it identifies and the need for Labour to respond to its recommendations. As a longstanding democratic organisation of party members, WLG also reaffirms that there is no place in the Labour Party for antisemitism or any other form of racism or discrimination.

The grounds for Jeremy’s suspension have not yet been made clear and, moreover, the legitimacy of the process by which the decision was made appears questionable. 

On a day when Labour was the subject of a report that directed the party to ensure that its disciplinary procedures are clear, consistent and fair, it is unfortunate, to say the least, that such a high-profile decision appears to have been made in such dubious circumstances.

As a former leader, it would be wholly unreasonable for Jeremy not to be able to comment on a report which is directed at his period in office. Page 27 of the report itself endorses this right very clearly:


“Article 10 [of the Human Rights Act] will protect Labour Party members who, for example … express their opinions on internal Party matters, such as the scale of antisemitism within the Party, based on their own experience and within the law.


Jeremy Corbyn’s record in fighting racism and prejudice in all its forms is, in our view, second to none. This makes it all the more deplorable that he should have been subject to repeated, inaccurate and baseless accusations that he somehow condoned, facilitated or even promoted antisemitism during his time as party leader. The action that has now been taken against him lends credence to these aspersions on the character of a decent and principled man. It also represents an unwarranted attack on those many thousands of Labour Party members who were and remain inspired by Jeremy’s socialist vision and principles, who now feel let down by the leadership’s action.

Welsh Labour Grassroots calls for the suspension to be dropped immediately and for the whip to be restored. Until this injustice is resolved, we urge members to offer Jeremy the maximum support and solidarity and, above all, to remain in the Labour party, to continue to fight for the politics and principles that he represents.”

Gillingham Programmes #1983/84

This 1983/84 football season is carrying on regardless of whatever chaos is ruling my life. Therefore, instead of following the season date by date in a religious manner, I will just write the occasional feature, such as the one below on a small selection of Gillingham programmes.

Mark Dunk is a political activist that I know of and I have worked with him on a number of occasions. It was his 40th birthday earlier this year, so I thought it would be nice if I wrote the following blog as a tribute to his enthusiasm for a shit football club and I will send him the original programmes as a souvenir.

***

I have 5 Gillingham programmes from the 1983/84 football season. I have listed these below and I am sure you will agree that there are some glamourous Canon League games in this selection:

Gillingham v Hull City 3 Sept 1983

Gillingham v Oxford United 17 Sept 1983

Gillingham v Exeter City 18 October 1983

Gillingham v Lincoln City 5 November 1983

Gillingham v Bristol Rovers 23 April 1984

Where do I start? There is such a tasty smörgåsbord of articles in this enticing bundle, but I suppose it makes sense to start at the beginning with the mouth-watering fixture between the mighty Gills and the fearsome tigers from Hull at Priestfield Stadium.

6_49_10_scan184841992

Supporters of the Gills could be excused for expecting a page entitled ‘Management Talk’ to feature the words and wisdom of their first-team manager Keith Peacock. However, Assistant Manager Paul Taylor has been wheeled out to brush over the side’s opening day defeat at Sheffield United. The final score at Bramall Lane was 4-0 and Taylor can only hope that better things lay ahead:

“What happened at Bramall Lane was a big disappointment to us all but its now history and we must put to the back of our minds the events of that day.”

Some classic management talk there to kick-off a fairly standard programme of the time, which includes familiar staples such as a quiz, an A-Z of Gillingham, Pen Pictures of the visiting team, black and white action shots from previous games and a Gills chat column in which we discover that Gary Sutton’s decision to quit the world of football in favour of a career in the police force, makes him the sixth former Gillingham player to have joined the boys in blue. Sutton joins Kenny Ronaldson, Mike Buttress, Charlie Yong, John Overton and Dave Shipperly in carving out a career away from football with the police. This is an interesting tit-bit for almost no one.  I wonder if the number of players to have joined the police has risen since 1983? If anyone has the answer to this puzzler then please keep it to yourself and don’t encourage me.

I should also make a comment about the visitors to Priestfield Stadium on this Saturday afternoon in September 1983 – Hull City. Numerous times throughout the programme, we are reminded that the Tigers – who were fresh from winning promotion from Division 4 in 1982/83 – had recovered from the brink of extinction only months earlier.

I could review each and every Gillingham programme that I have. Indeed, this was my original intention, but I really want to send my friend Mark his birthday card and programmes before the end of the year. I am just so busy and stressed at the moment that I do not have the time or, to be honest, the inclination to do this. I am attempting to finalise my support arrangements with ICS and WCBC, after years of campaigning for independent living for disabled people. It seems that I am having to fight to the bitter end to receive what I need to be able to meet my physical and mental well-being needs. This is the appalling reality of life for disabled people in 21st century Britain.

Subsequently, I think you can survive without a review of the Gillingham programmes against Oxford, Exeter, Lincoln and Bristol Rovers. Hopefully, Mark will enjoy his bundle of programmes and I will soon hear my fate as decided by an independent social worker. The only thing that will be decided by this is whether or not I have to keep fighting or whether justice has finally been served.

I guess the pursuit of justice is something that I have in common with at least 6 ex-Gillingham players…

International Ataxia Awareness Day

For International Ataxia Awareness Day, I have decided to include a section from Every Silver Lining has a Cloud, focusing on the day I was diagnosed with Friedreich’s Ataxia back in January 1993, at the age of 15.

***

I staggered across a hectic car park, underneath threatening grey clouds, towards my date with destiny. Proud parents clutching a Moses basket of hope and potential gazed lovingly into each other’s eyes as they emerged from the building I was heading towards. The young mother had clearly been up all night, but the emotional rollercoaster that her tear-stained face suggested she’d been riding was now ending with smiles, balloons and relief.  After carefully strapping their bundle of joy into a rust-ridden Ford Cortina, the father released a bright red balloon marked with an unfathomable Chinese symbol and watched as it was consumed by the dark skies hanging over Alderhey Children’s Hospital. I continued to wobble onwards, but before I could reach my desired destination, the heavens opened…

***

The specialist was talking at a rate of knots, but I wasn’t listening. I could only think of how much he looked like Matthew Corbett and wondered if it would’ve been any easier if he’d employed his cuddly puppet friends to tell me that I was suffering from a progressive, genetic condition of the nervous system known as Friedreich’s Ataxia. I concluded that it would only have added to the confusion as Sooty is only capable of a whisper while Sweep speaks in a squeaky dialect of his own.

I retuned into the unglamorous reality provided by the specialist as he mapped out the rest of my life using medical terms and unattractive words such as “wheelchair”, “diabetes”, “slurred speech”, “heart disease” and “curvature of the spine”.

Apparently, only one person out of every 50,000 in Britain suffers from this cruel condition, which traps and maintains a healthy and active mind in an eroding and useless body. Just half an hour earlier, I’d been hoping to hear about a trapped nerve that could be released with a simple operation and allow me to get my football career back on track. It wasn’t to be. I’d have to live with the fact that the cards life had dealt me had just been reshuffled.

It was a lot to get my head around as despite reassurances from Dr Corbett that Britain was becoming more accessible and appreciative of disabled people’s needs, I had enough social awareness to realise it meant a frustrating future, fighting stereotypes, avoiding pigeon holes and struggling to be heard…

***

On the dismal journey home from Alderhey, I was faced with impersonal reams of medical jargon that were supposed to educate and inform me about the disease I was fighting (see Appendix A). Instead of ploughing through this inaccessible nightmare, I chose to indulge myself with the inventive prose of Dave Lovett – chief football reporter for the Wrexham Leader – as I was more concerned with the battle for promotion from Barclays Division Three than whatever was going on inside my body.

I finished reading the match report of Wrexham’s 3-1 home win over Walsall as the trusty Allegro entered the concrete confines of one of the Mersey Tunnels. While we progressed through the poorly-lit passageway, I allowed myself two minutes of contemplation about what I’d just been told, wiped a tear from my eye and focussed my attentions on the road ahead, which I hoped would eventually lead to bright sunshine and light.

Emerging from the underpass, I was greeted by dark and depressing rain clouds with the only splash of colour coming from that same red balloon I’d seen at Alderhey earlier. It was threatening to follow us all the way home until it was finally engulfed by the brume over Ellesmere Port. By this point though I’d managed to programme the Chinese symbol inscribed upon it deep into my memory, pledging to one day discover its true meaning…

** Every Silver Lining has a Cloud is available to buy for just £7.99 on Ebay. **

 

BBC Sport: Ryan Reynolds: Hollywood star in Wrexham takeover bid

I have copied below, an article from BBC Sport about the proposed takeover of Wrexham AFC, by Hollywood superstars Ryan Reynolds and Rob McElhenney.

This is surreal news, and it is difficult to comprehend that this is happening to the club I have followed since 1985.

There are still many hoops for the prospective new owners to jump through, and in these early stages any potential deal could turn out to be pie in the sky.

You would imagine that I would be excited about the potential of new ownership. It could be good news for disabled supporters, who are in need of improved facilities at the Racecourse Ground, and I am sure that the standard of football will improve as money is invested in to the team.

As a critic of teams that have been bankrolled by individuals or business, I feel it would be hypocritical for me to simply jump on the bandwagon, as I am sure thousands of new fans will do. I think the fact that the sport of football no longer interests me in the same way, means that I will continue to support the club by concentrating on its history and waiting to see what happens, if anything…

Hollywood stars Ryan Reynolds and Rob McElhenney are interested in investing in Wrexham, the club have announced.

Deadpool and Detective Pikachu star Reynolds and It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia’s McElhenney will share their vision for the club with members at a special general meeting (SGM).

The fan-owned club’s members have voted overwhelmingly for talks to proceed.

Any potential takeover could lead to £2m being invested in the club, which has been in fan ownership since 2011.

A total of 1,223 Wrexham Supporters Trust members – over 95% of those asked – voted for the move and 31 against at a special general meeting on Tuesday.

Ryan Reynolds tweet
Ryan Reynolds sent this tweet an hour after the news broke

Trust director Spencer Harris, who expects a further vote from fans on the outline of the deal “in weeks rather than months”, told BBC Radio Wales Breakfast the deal is in its early stages, but he has known the identity of the would-be backers for some time.

“We’ve known for a little while, but we wanted to come as early as we could in the process to involve supporters,” Harris told the programme.

“As everybody knows we are community owned and therefore this has become public knowledge a little bit earlier than it would in any other normal circumstance, but yeah it’s out there now so people know all about it.

“We started talking through representatives of theirs, talking about the club, and we’re now in a position where we are able, following the SGM on Tuesday night, to get into detailed discussions about what a takeover deal could look like.

“There is some way to go and at the end of the day it will be the supporters who decide what the future direction of the club will be.”

Mr Reynolds, who was among the world’s highest paid actors this year after appearing in the Netflix films 6 Underground and Red Notice, has been a shareholder in Aviation American Gin since 2018.

In August 2020 drinks giant Diageo bought Aviation American, along with three other spirits, as part of a $610m (£460m) deal.

Harris has been impressed by their enthusiasm and approach to a possible takeover of the National League club.

“I’ve spoken to both of them several times,” Harris explained.

“They are very serious, professional and successful people, not just as actors but in the business world as well and this is a very serious endeavour for them and they’ll set out their vision in due course, but I know they are very passionate about this and have gone into a lot of depth to understand about the football club.”

So far it is unclear why the Hollywood ‘A-listers’ are interested in a fifth-tier UK football club in north Wales.

“I think that’s a question for them in good time,” said Harris.

“I would answer ‘why not?’, because for us as Wrexham fans we are the third oldest professional team in the world, the oldest in Wales and play at the oldest international stadium anywhere in the world.

“We are a team with a proud history that’s beaten Porto in the European Cup Winners Cup and there’s lot’s of potential at the club, so why not?”

“But… I don’t want to get in front of them setting out their vision for the club which they will do in due course.”

Approval from members for a deal would see the Trust relinquish control of running the club.

“It’s very exciting news for a lot of people, but supporters will make a decision on whether this goes forward or not,” explained Harris.

“Of course I would imagine we would see them at the Racecourse and we may have done already had it not been for Covid-19.

“It’s a difficult time for all of football, not just at our level, even clubs at Premier League level are taking significant loans from government.

“We are in a relatively decent position versus many so there’s no particular burning platform at the football club as we speak right now, however investment into any football club, especially at this level, does make quite some difference and obviously these are very serious professionals, successful people who I’m sure would have a lot to bring to any business.”

It would not be the first time Hollywood stars have become involved with a Welsh club, with US star of The Office Mindy Kaling revealed as being among the stakeholders in an American consortium that purchased a controlling stake in Swansea City in 2016.

Results Round -Up #1983/84

Continuing with my look back at the 1983/84 football season, here are the results for Saturday the 17th of September, 1983 thanks to Soccerbase.

It is early days in the season, but I am struggling to keep up with things, such is the state of my support network. I am trying to balance having a social life, with my desire to remain productive and a prolific writer. Without the correct support, I cannot hope to achieve the goals I have set myself, though I am hopeful that this will change in the near future. I am relieved to announce that it looks like I will be having my reassessment with ICS on Friday, September 25th.

I do not believe I should be in a position where I have to sit in my office, without being able to type or speak on the telephone with black clouds of frustration and anger building above my head. With a little help, I can contribute so much to society, and I have no plans to waste my potential.

I guess that is what I am scared that I am doing, by reliving the 1983/84 football season. However, I have received plenty of compliments and encouragement to carry on with this project. I think what I will do is carry on without sticking religiously to the relevant dates, as I just do not have the resources to do this.

Anyway, here are the results as promised above.

***

 

Sa 17Sep 1983 Liverpool 2 – 1 Aston Villa
Sa 17Sep 1983 Tottenham 1 – 2 Everton
Sa 17Sep 1983 Birmingham 1 – 0 Ipswich
Sa 17Sep 1983 QPR 3 – 0 Sunderland
Sa 17Sep 1983 Norwich 2 – 3 Nottm Forest
Sa 17Sep 1983 Notts Co 0 – 4 Arsenal
Sa 17Sep 1983 Luton 4 – 0 Wolves
Sa 17Sep 1983 Coventry 2 – 1 Leicester
Sa 17Sep 1983 Southampton 3 – 0 Man Utd
Sa 17Sep 1983 Stoke 0 – 4 Watford
Sa 17Sep 1983 West Brom 1 – 0 West Ham

Sa 17Sep 1983 Shrewsbury 3 – 2 Barnsley
Sa 17Sep 1983 Sheff Wed 2 – 1 Chelsea
Sa 17Sep 1983 Huddersfield 1 – 0 Swansea
Sa 17Sep 1983 Fulham 2 – 1 Leeds
Sa 17Sep 1983 Newcastle 3 – 1 Crystal Palace
Sa 17Sep 1983 Brighton 1 – 1 Carlisle
Sa 17Sep 1983 Middlesbrough 1 – 1 Grimsby
Sa 17Sep 1983 Man City 6 – 0 Blackburn
Sa 17Sep 1983 Cambridge U 2 – 2 Charlton
Sa 17Sep 1983 Cardiff 0 – 0 Portsmouth
Sa 17Sep 1983 Derby 2 – 2 Oldham

Sa 17Sep 1983 Preston 0 – 0 Hull
Sa 17Sep 1983 Lincoln 3 – 1 Plymouth
Sa 17Sep 1983 Gillingham 2 – 3 Oxford
Sa 17Sep 1983 Bristol R 2 – 0 Exeter
Sa 17Sep 1983 Rotherham 0 – 1 Leyton Orient
Sa 17Sep 1983 Wimbledon 4 – 2 Port Vale
Sa 17Sep 1983 Millwall 3 – 1 Bournemouth
Sa 17Sep 1983 Walsall 3 – 2 Newport C (old)
Sa 17Sep 1983 Wigan 2 – 1 Brentford
Sa 17Sep 1983 Bradford 1 – 1 Southend

 

Sa 17Sep 1983 Torquay 0 – 1 Aldershot
Sa 17Sep 1983 Reading 1 – 1 Chesterfield
Sa 17Sep 1983 York 4 – 1 Chester
Sa 17Sep 1983 Colchester 4 – 0 Rochdale
Sa 17Sep 1983 Crewe 2 – 1 Darlington (old)
Sa 17Sep 1983 Hartlepool 1 – 0 Doncaster
Sa 17Sep 1983 Mansfield 1 – 0 Tranmere
Sa 17Sep 1983 Hereford. 2 – 1 Peterborough
Sa 17Sep 1983 Swindon 0 – 0 Blackpool