AN iconic village club that once faced closure is celebrating its heritage premises being debt free.
Shrewd management, cash input from dedicated members and fundraising has seen a remarkable turnaround in the fortunes of Dobcross Band and Social Club.
News of the club’s success was revealed at the club’s AGM at their Platt Lane headquarters.
Members were told the club’s loan from the Capital Fund is now completely paid off. All investors in the fund have been repaid and the fund’s bank account is being closed.
Charges held by the brewers J W Lees and the Capital Fund over the club’s assets are consequently being removed and this means the club is now debt-free.
During 2017, turnover increased by 14 per-cent from £114,000 to £129,000 due to a small price increase for non-members and a higher volume of business.
Income was boosted by two grants: £8,910 for cladding the east side of the building and £436 for low energy lighting while repairs and improvements were mostly covered by grant money.
The report to members said: “Our policy of sourcing beers from different suppliers, while maintaining a good working relationship with JW Lees continues.
“However, we still have not had any success in finding funding for our major development work but we will continue our quest.”
The club’s Coffee Shop Team were praised for raising more than £14,000 which contributed towards the sound-proof room divider, new curtains and rails, chairs in the bar lounge, bar stools, tables for the function room, and an exterior awning.
The original team is standing down after five years but the monthly events will continue with a new team lead by club committee member Alison Labrey.
The club’s future plans included improving sound-proofing and investigating cladding options to boost sound insulation.
There are plans for a new entrance door and cosmetic improvements to the main entrance area and improvements to the WiFi later in the year.
And steward John Holden’s team were congratulated for being awarded the Rochdale, Oldham & Bury branch’s CAMRA’s Club of the Year 2018 award.
Special thanks were reserved for Jill and Kevin Drake who are stepping away from their current duties as secretary and vice president to spend extended periods abroad.
After the meeting, club president Terry Lawless said: “The club’s transformation over the last ten years has been miraculous.
“The hard work and dedication of a small group of people has taken the club from the brink of closure to a situation where it is debt free and looking better than ever.
“Their legacy is a solvent, popular club at the heart of the community, with a bright future ahead,” he added.
Election of Officers: Terry Lawless – President; Michael Mooney – Vice President; Paul Campbell – Treasurer; Carole Bell – Secretary; Committee: Alison Labrey, Bill Lamb, Pam Rose, Jill Drake (working remotely), Lynn Glynn, Teddy Kennedy, Matt Popplewell, Jim Grady, Keith Prior, and Ken Bennett.