Unnecessary caution at business breakfast meeting on Bramley-Moore

Paul reports from the “Everton Football Stadium and Associated Regeneration” meeting hosted by “Downtown in Business” featuring Everton’s current CEO, Robert Elstone and Liverpool City Council Mayor, Joe Anderson.

Paul The Esk 16/03/2018 48comments  |  Jump to last

This morning saw the greatly anticipated business meeting “Everton Football Stadium and Associated Regeneration” hosted by “Downtown in Business” featuring Everton’s current CEO, Robert Elstone, and Liverpool City Council Mayor, Joe Anderson.

The meeting was split into two parts, Robert Elstone speaking first followed by Joe Anderson. I don’t intend going through to meeting verbatim but recording my observations from the comments made and the answers to questions asked.

Positive news

Firstly, the positive news. Although a number of Evertonians still doubt the Bramley-Moore Stadium will happen, there is now an overwhelming body of evidence that it will. Despite finances still not being totally in the bag, it’s pretty clear that the expectations are that it will happen. The club, in Robert’s words, is spending money on the project now, and given the usual caution Everton display on such matters, that to me is a clear indicator.

 Perhaps the biggest questions remain about the budget, and the implications of that in terms of capacity and ultimately even design.


I’m trying to be objective, but try as he might, after a surprisingly up-beat start, Robert soon drifted into his usual more cautious speak, referring to costs but also referring to the business case. I’m hoping this is his natural caution rather than the belief of the whole board, but presenting the case for a £500 million capital investment in a new stadium as “future-proofing” rather than the big leap ahead that other stadiums presented other clubs is at best unnecessarily cautious, at worst demonstrates a continuation of the limited thinking of the last 20 years.

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It seems odd to me that we can sell 33,000 season tickets in an antiquated but much loved Goodison Park with its poor sight lines, obstructed views and very limited food, beverage and entertainment facilities, yet only project 35-40,000 season tickets in an iconic stadium at Bramley-Moore. All the case evidence from Arsenal, Manchester City, Southampton, Sunderland etc is that season ticket sales rise substantially when a new stadium opens. The challenge I would suggest is retaining those ticket holders in future years, not finding them in the first place, but that becomes a footballing issue – success on the pitch keeps bums on the seats.

Similarly, there is the view expressed today that the stadium will not be substantially geared to executive or premium seating. From a business modelling perspective this makes no sense. If the concern is that executive seating destroys atmosphere then surely the challenge is passed to the architect to solve, not as appears to be the case reduce the number. As a rule of thumb, 10% of the capacity being premium or executive seating of different categories should generate more than 50% of the overall income of the stadium. Given Everton’s desire to keep regular seating prices as low as possible (to be applauded) surely the premium and therefore opportunity to subsidise regular seating should be taken?

Additionally, if the business case is as tight as Robert suggests, being less aggressive on premium seating accentuates the problem, it doesn’t solve it. Airlines don’t become more profitable by reducing premium classes at the expense of economy, they develop their product to increase demand. I suggest we take that view also.

There was talk that “phasing” was back on the agenda – meaning a design that permits for capacity to grow. However, as Robert admitted to in his comments, the extra investment required to future-proof potentially higher capacity in the future doesn’t produce an immediate return on investment, so again, what is the business logic in this?

In addition to the business case concerns, the issues relating to World Heritage Status still feature although Joe Anderson robustly defends the idea that having WHS does not mean we should be a monument but a “living, vibrant city”.

Bullish Joe Anderson

As much as Robert is naturally cautious, Joe Anderson is the exact reverse and his enthusiasm for the project has to be admired even if the reality takes a while to catch up with his words. It is clear that the stadium has two major benefits for Anderson. Firstly, it bookends the Liverpool Waters development, accelerating other developers' plans, bringing forward much needed future revenues through increased land values and therefore business rates, plus the multiplier effect of increased economic activity and future visitors to the City. Secondly, the stadium represents a significant proportion of his “invest to earn” income now and in the future. With the prospect of £7 million in revenues from Everton, that represents 20% of his future income from these schemes – something which should not be lost when considering his enthusiasm.

On timeframe, there’s now a clear sight of what is expected and when. We can argue about what on earth has happened since nearly a year ago the “guarantor scheme” was first announced and the now very obvious lack of progress throughout 2017, but now there’s a clear timeline.

The key points in the timeline are as follows: confirmation of the City Council funding by early summer, ongoing to conclusion confirmation of the additional funding (perhaps as much as £220 million). Start of the formal planning process beyond the summer (informal meetings are already taking place), granting of planning permission in early 2019 followed by work starting by the summer of 2019. On that basis, although tight (in Robert’s words) we will kick off the 2022 season in Bramley-Moore.

To conclude, perhaps there’s not much that’s been learned from today, but the significance of the first face-to-face talks in public shouldn’t be over-looked.

With or without Robert (the subject was banned from today’s meeting; I‘m pretty sure we go into the next few months without him), Everton through the direction of Moshiri, who has to address the lack of progress to date, perhaps already has, need to be much more assertive. They need to be confident in the outcome, and that, once built, the stadium is a great success. They need to grasp the nettle and get on with it.

I think fans have a role to play too – the consultation process continues with Richard Kenyon set to announce the planned workshops. We have to demonstrate our confidence in Bramley-Moore, not a cautious, scaled-back version of what might have been, but the biggest it can be, best it can be, most iconic stadium that stretches Moshiri’s pockets to the limits. He said at the AGM in January that, whilst he was here, funding would never be an issue – well let’s hold him to his word, and demand the best – something that meets the club motto, Nil Satis Nisi Optimum!

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Reader Comments (48)

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Phil (Kelsall) Roberts
1 Posted 16/03/2018 at 16:11:37
Stretches his pockets to the limits – and he should be proud if he goes bankrupt trying to make Everton great again.

Yeah. Glad it is not me you are holding to account.

Scott Bosworth
2 Posted 16/03/2018 at 16:14:44
Good report, Paul. Thanks for sharing your notes.
Jay Harris
3 Posted 16/03/2018 at 16:25:32
Great feedback Paul, Thanks.

After 20 years of Kenwright and cronies it is easy to be cynical but Moshiri has shown he is not afraid to put his hands in his pockets to make EFC better.

We need to get rid of the dinosaurs and bring some people with vision and ability onboard to reinstil belief amongst the fans.

Derek Knox
4 Posted 16/03/2018 at 16:37:54
Good report Paul, informative, but with all these projects, prices escalate, the more and longer the discussions take place, resulting in further escalation.

I am in total agreement with Jay Harris's last paragraph.

Lawrence Green
5 Posted 16/03/2018 at 16:46:12
I can sort of see some tactical sense in playing cautious, the less the club looks like it is banging the drum, the less likely the opponents of the project will get themselves organised and make life difficult for the council and for the club.

I certainly hope that the cautious approach is not born out of a fear that the plans to have an iconic world class stadium on the docks are unaffordable and therefore a watered-down version is already in the pipeline. If the latter was to be the case, we would have been better advised to remain at Goodison and rebuild that over a period of time.

As for Moshiri, he only signs the guarantees, not a penny piece will come out of his pocket, no matter how deep they are; the club will have to carry the burden of the costs of a new stadium, not the guardians of the club. From that perspective, perhaps, Elstone's caution is not without merit.

Eddie McBride
8 Posted 16/03/2018 at 17:30:29

Volunteers to paint wooden shed (County Road area). Ongoing project for at least five years.

ps: Please bring own brush.

Tony Everan
9 Posted 16/03/2018 at 19:02:39
I can't help but feel that some momentum has been lost.

There is always a sticking point, and the biggest one will always be funding. It continues to concern me that, after many months, the funding aspect is still a problem. I want to see some real progress.

Maybe it's me being naive and wet behind the ears on such matters. Also it's impatience borne out of the frustration of previous projects.

Paul Birmingham
10 Posted 16/03/2018 at 19:40:00
This is Everton but I hope the momentum of the clubs office and admin relocation in the summer to the Liver Building will kick-start an up-surge in the club's fortunes and drive on and off the park.

If this plan fails, then I see a long way back if there's anyway back at all, to regain the supporters' faith in the club.

Hopefully good times will arrive soon. Win v Stoke...?

Liam Reilly
11 Posted 16/03/2018 at 19:40:16
This is the game changer for the club and for me, will determine if we are to compete again at the big table or just drift into mediocrity.
Joe O'Brien
12 Posted 16/03/2018 at 19:47:20
Eddie @8 at least we'll be in a world class stadium in a world class location besides you being in your dive with a loft conversion eh?
Joe McMahon
13 Posted 16/03/2018 at 19:50:08
Sooner the better really, it's gotta happen. We are years behind. Everton are losing out on match day income becase of the lack of facilities, hospitality and having stands such as the Bullens.
James Flynn
14 Posted 16/03/2018 at 20:09:50
Tony (#9) – I'm as wet behind the ears on such matters as you are.

What can we see without guess-work?

Anyone does business with Peel knows Everton bought a 200-year lease on Bramley-Moore Docks.

Anyone does business with Dan Meis's company knows it.

The company taking the soil samples at the dock. Everyone they do business with know it too.

The Mayor of Liverpool trumpets it to anyone who will listen.

In all four instances, construction companies know this is coming.

To guess-work? I'm going to guess that Moshiri (and the city) has financial backers banging on the door to get in on the ground floor regarding the docks' regeneration.

Another guess? The "sticking point" everyone is waiting on is the the last financial i-dotted and t-crossed between EFC and the City.

Then it's ON!

Exciting times.

Tony Abrahams
15 Posted 16/03/2018 at 20:37:02
Good post James, I've read for years that these things only happen in London, which always frustrates me.

I know little about economics, I think Manchester overtook Birmingham, to become our second city years ago, but honestly think that, when this City's docks are regenerated, then only London will be able to offer more to the visitor?

I'm not saying these visitors will stay, or even become Evertonians, but the money men are coming. Otherwise, Peel, wouldn't have given Everton a second glance, especially whilst Kenwright is still on the board...

David McMullen
16 Posted 16/03/2018 at 22:17:53
Good reading. I've not doubted it will go ahead but each 'report' is more and more worrying.

You mentioned about cautious "new stadium as “future-proofing” rather than the big leap ahead that other stadiums". How spineless is the current CEO!

Anything less that the lines of the new Tottenham stadium, including size, will be not good enough.

Dave Speed
17 Posted 16/03/2018 at 22:58:45
I read and understand what is said about the financial aspects, and I still believe it will happen, but the not knowing whether we have investors salivating at the door or not is frustrating.

However, regarding "the issues relating to World Heritage Status still feature" – to me, there are no issues. I wrote to Joe Anderson's office a while back and got a nice reply.

I pointed out that it is not what is built on the site, it is what it represents and evokes. The docks of this great city were a major point of departure for UK people migrating all around the world. The people took their culture with them, and founded new towns and cities named after ones in their homeland.

They also took with them their football allegiances and there are Evertons (along with many other clubs' names) to be found in more than one place that were former British colonies. Therefore, what better World Heritage cultural representation could there be than a brand spanking new football stadium?

There could be tributes paying homage to our foreign visiting friends' heritage, using whatever medium, incorporated to remind them that their ancestors were just as likely to have embarked from the very dock upon which the stadium sits. Or one just down the road...

Or just build another museum or art gallery that will cost the city, as they would really have to be free to enter. The World Heritage committee (?) would be delighted with that.

Derek Thomas
18 Posted 17/03/2018 at 00:40:53
Well in Esk, I hope it's a case of 'Under Promise, Over Deliver'.

Just how much does an empty, unused 'World Heritage Site' contribute to LCC coffers? How much more will it deteriorate remaining an empty, unused WHS?

The bare bones are all there and will remain... there must be a way to work in/incorporate that suitable cleaned and refurbished magnificent clock tower too... plenty of images from times of yore exist to cover the area with before, present (empty, unused etc) future exhibits in the manner of the Albert Dock.

To be fair, the Albert Dock is enough to show what 19th and early 20th Century docks were about.

Also given LCC's extremely poor record of pulling down old buildings, least said by anybody even vaguely connected with them the better...were was World Heritage then? [Ends bee-in-bonnet mini-rant.]

Anyway, step forward all you men of vision (hopefully) and have at it... But, this being The Ev, I have recurring flashbacks of the car Homer Simpson helped design and the owner's resultant bankruptcy!

Terry Farrell
19 Posted 17/03/2018 at 07:37:41
Build it and they will come. Let's go big and match Spurs ambition.

Why can't the fans be offered shares in the funding of the stadium so we feel part of it?

Andrew Heffernan
20 Posted 17/03/2018 at 08:06:27
I understand people are concerned about the funding issues but the tasks James lists, specifically obtaining the land/lease, soil sampling, architects in place. The results of the soil samples will determine the build cost, which will determine the 'return on investment' for banks, private equity companies participating.

No-one wants to start a build and have to go back to investors seeking further material contributions or seek a rights issue for the purpose of completion. Return on Investment is the base of everything in the stadium build, forget about football, this is all about real estate.

The stadium will directly impact everything built on the rest of Peel's land and what the city do for them in return with infrastructure. No stadium being built will just see the whole North Dock plans stagnate.

For once, I think the club is finally doing things properly; sadly, past failures have turned the majority into sceptics.

This development is huge for the North of the city and the city as a whole; idiots calling radio stations aside questioning the council's involvement is both sad and extremely short-sighted.

As with the on-pitch business, we just need to be a little bit more positive.

Jon Withey
21 Posted 17/03/2018 at 10:03:05
Fingers crossed, this legacy is more important than all the overpriced players in my opinion. That said, I hope we are still in the Premiership in 2022 !
Tony Marsh
22 Posted 17/03/2018 at 15:02:02
So another 12 months of waiting around for finances to appear to build a new stadium. Where are Moshiri's billions? It's just more stalling tactics. What if Joe Anderson lost his grip on power or got ill or died, god forbid, where would we be then? It's an absolute joke and the most worrying aspect of this prolonged fiasco is some of you are still buying into it. A deal that seems too good to be true should be signed sealed and delivered before something goes wrong.

I have said this before and I will say it again. If this stadium deal was a 100% genuine starter then why haven't the club made a start on clearing and draining the site in readiness for the build to start? Not a thing has been done down there, not a single thing. I go past the site 5 days a week and it's derelict. We don't need planning permission or stadium design plans to put the foundations in and clear the shit away do we...?? Give the fans something to cling to and make a start.

The club is basically telling the fans it needs another 12 months to raise a proxy £163 million – why??? I'm not fooled one bit. Sorry, guys, but we have a skint Billionaire in charge at EFC. We don't have the money or the brains for this project. Moshiri and Elstone... Give me strength.

Paul McCoy
23 Posted 17/03/2018 at 17:55:06
I can't say too much as I don't want to drop my source in it. But:

a) The stadium is 100% going to happen as things stand; and

b) it should have been a lot further on by now, but the delays are completely down to EFC not keeping to the agreed schedule.

Alastair Donaldson
24 Posted 17/03/2018 at 19:19:04
Wonder what the scope of the soils team work is? If the plan is to infill the dock, with suitable/imported materials, surely their work at the docks is limited?

Michael Kenrick
25 Posted 18/03/2018 at 02:05:23
I'm only guessing here, Alastair, but an option might be to retain the heritage of the dock walls themselves, and to perhaps construct underground parking in the ready-made 'excavation' that the dock provides.

This would require dewatering the dock itself, obviously, which changes the stress and lateral loads on the dock walls. And providing some kind of impervious barrier or the river side to keep out the water of the Mersey.

So I imagine the soils investigation is focused on the stability of the walls under the dewatered condition, where each block in the walls becomes 30 to 50% heavier just through the lack of submergence under water.

The simpler option may be to fill in the dock, and avoid the problems that permanent drainage and dewatering of the dock brings. But the problem then becomes differential settlement beneath the foundations for the stadium, because part would probably be constructed over the dock walls, and part over the compacted fill.

And there's almost certainly a thick layer of soft compressible silt at the bottom of the dock that needs to be removed, and the base of the dock defined in terms of a supporting layer. (The Sherwood Sandstone should be there, but will need drilling to prove it's presence, strength and depth.)

Any way you cut it, the engineering challenges are fairly unique, I imagine. Not insolvable but certainly challenging and important to get right.

Michael Kenrick
26 Posted 18/03/2018 at 02:20:40

Why do we have to keep repeating this? They can't do anything meaningful at the site until the full design is finalized and approved. That includes getting planning permission. You can't go filling in the dock until you know what you are building there. In full detail.

Is that really so hard for you to understand? You say nothing is going on there, but the geotechncial investigation has been and is the only thing any reasonable person would have expected at this point.

Yes, we all know the previous attempts have been abject failures. And this project is way behind where it could have been. But all serious indications, contrary to your boring previous posts, suggest the project is proceeding. That will continue to be the case until it's built or it's canned.

Most sensible people acknowledge either possibility moving forward. Save your naysaying until you have something serious (dare I say 'concrete'?) to aim at.

Steve Brown
27 Posted 18/03/2018 at 03:24:33
Thanks for the explanation, editor. Tony would rather be proven right and the stadium not built, than proven wrong and the stadium is built.
John Hoggarth
28 Posted 18/03/2018 at 09:26:22
If Bramley-Moore Dock is to be filled in, does anyone know how the canal link to the Pier Head will be retained? The open water of the dock is part of that route and I'd expect planning permission will be dependent on keeping it open?
Alan McGuffog
29 Posted 18/03/2018 at 14:54:44
John. I think the Leeds-Liverpool Canal locks down through Stanley Dock and then turns south eventually locking through Princess Dock, past the Three Graces and locks into Canning or Salthouse.

Immediately north of the the Leeds-Liverpool is Nelson Dock and then Bramley-Moore Dock. I wouldn't have thought the water feed would be affected.

Having said that, my knowledge of water engineering is limited to changing a washer and usually involves getting a man in chez McGuffog!

Colin Glassar
30 Posted 18/03/2018 at 15:17:15
Unless Usmanov comes on-board in the summer, I can't see this (the stadium) happening. I was convinced Usmanov was a cert until I saw him on a list of Putin cronies who might be blacklisted by foggy bottom and Whitehall. Typical Everton: so near and yet so far...
Ray Said
31 Posted 18/03/2018 at 15:41:49
As Michael (#25) suggests, some of the dock is grade-listed – pretty sure it's the retaining walls and they are Grade 2 – which places restrictions on what can be done on the site.
Tony Marsh
32 Posted 18/03/2018 at 15:47:10

Let's assume you are correct on the build procedure and more and more time is required... but what about the finances? How can anyone take the club seriously when the club cannot stump up the cash for our side of the bargain?

All we hear from mouthpieces within the club is "we are working on finances" – at the same time, fans think we have a Billionaire who is here to save us and build a stadium. How can anyone take any of it seriously if we don't have the money to do it??

It reeks of Kings Dock again. The council will soon lose patience and pull out if this carries on much longer. That or there will be a power shift. Why doesn't the club either put up or shut up? It's embarrassing. The stick Evertonians live with over the shit football is one thing but this stadium bullshit takes the biscuit.

Another year now before we do what? Have another fans survey... Promise Dan the Man will be at the next AGM with stadium designs, like they promised in December... I don't have proof Bramley-Moore won't happen but none of you have proof it will happen either.

Michael Kenrick
33 Posted 18/03/2018 at 16:21:23

The way I rationalise the finances is a bit like the build procedure. The club has been working to put the pieces in place. It's a process that has many moving parts, takes time to negotiate, draw up agreements, put the financial instruments in place, will not all be resolved at Day One, and may have bumps along the way.

I'm much more of a geotechnical engineer / groundwater guy for new project builds – than a finance guy, so I'm out of my comfort zone here. But I'm not looking to Moshiri to splash all the cash, as you seem to believe he should have done already. That's not the financial model that anyone (except you) has put forward, and is therefore totally unrealistic in terms of your misplaced expectations.

We Evertonians are superbly privileged, in my humble opinion, to have ongoing commentary from a trio of highly respected Everton businessmen (Paul The Esk, John Blain, and Rodger Armstrong) who have made it their business to track and comment on every aspect of Everton Business Matters since last March, and they don't seem to be raising any of the concerns that trouble you so much every time this topic comes up.

Have you listened to their podcasts? You really should.

Alexander Murphy
34 Posted 18/03/2018 at 16:40:17
John (28) if you are referring to the Leeds-Liverpool canal then that really is some considerable distance inland to the east (1 km?) beyond Regent Road, Derby Road and the Northern Line serving Sandhills Station.

However, if you mean the river corridor then yes Bramley-Moore Dock connects to (what I think is) Huskisson Dock to the north and Nelson Dock to the south. Both of these bodies of water have direct access via dock gates to the river. Bramley Moore Dock itself does not. BMD does, however, inter connect with both: OS Map of BMD

As to what presently exists of any note within the dock environs beyond the gates on Regent Road, very little indeed. As Michael has referred to above, the actual walls of the dock basin and the dockside itself (granite sets) being the full extent. Other structures are typical nondescript industrial corrugated sheds of no merit other than scrap value.

Should the access between the north and south neighbouring docks be required to be maintained, then the westward (river) end of BMD would require a new wall to be built to maintain this waterway.

The three granite pillars/towers between which the two gates are located absolutely shout "Ball, Harvey & Kendall", as my mate Jamie & I immediately remarked upon our first visit to the site last season.

Hope this helps with visualising.

Paul Columb
35 Posted 18/03/2018 at 20:35:17
Tony... Michael;

I see your discussion as nothing more than increasing frustration at the gaping void which is Everton FC's communication. With time dragging on and nothing tangible audible or visible in terms of real progress on the stadium, we all choose how to fill in the blanks. Either we feed off snippets of 'information' to remain optimistic or, understandably we reflect on the club's history in this area; fool me once (or three times in reality) etc.

From a communication perspective, the failings are there ('weeks' until the key principles document which was thrown together much much later, Dan Meis's flurry of fan engagement and teasers followed by silence and a 'check this space often' Sept 2017 BMD website entry gathering moss, Anderson's proclamation that we could be in a new ground in a couple of years etc) in that the club has not controlled the narrative.

Complex it may be but I completely understand Tony's heartburn as it relates to the protracted process as it relates to the mayor. He's a kingpin in the financial agreement and the longer this drags on, the greater likelihood that a spanner gets thrown in should he lose influence for whatever reason.

Also bantering in the blank spaces are the good folks at Everton Business Matters. I've listened each episode and tbh, there's little more than opinion and educated guessing. No one is in-the-know, even the Shareholders Association chair and so we sit around taking shite and get increasingly frustrated while grasping at straws. And all with the backdrop of the shittest season in memory and failings in virtually all sectors of the club. 'Everton that' has firmly replaced NSNO.

Although a synchronized change in chairman, board, CEO, DOF and manager in addition to shedding half of a failed squad in one fell swoop might be a risky proposition, it would be fully justified. But for god's sake, Everton, get a Communications Director with a clue in the door and save us from ourselves.

Alexander Murphy
36 Posted 19/03/2018 at 08:33:31
Correction to My earlier posting 34, the body of water immediately north of Bramley Moore Dock is in fact Sandon Half-Tide Dock and not Huskisson Dock as I thought earlier.

Clearly, the name Sandon has connection with another club's formation. Could this be at the root of their anguish?

John Hoggarth
37 Posted 19/03/2018 at 16:03:46
Alan (#29) & Alexander (#34), thank you both. Yep I put the canal link in the wrong place so I feel happier after your comments! Let's hope passage between Sandon Half-Tide Dock and Nelson Dock isn't needed. Building a wall sounds like a massive job!
Tony Marsh
38 Posted 19/03/2018 at 18:48:01
Paul @ 35

Perfectly summed up, mate, thank you. I recall John Blain recently talking about the no-show of Dan Mies at the last AGM.

The board promised the Shareholders Committee that Dan Meis would be present with stadium design in hand. Guess what — he wasn't there. Was it an oversight by the Board or just complete bullshit??

Tom Hughes
40 Posted 20/03/2018 at 16:33:45
I think the only thing that can be gleaned from the presentation is that nothing is certain. The point is: given the number of issues, determining and as yet unresolved factors, means that this is still very much a moving-target at every level. Therefore, the viability and/or any cost-benefit analysis of the whole project cannot have been decided yet.

So, if anything the previous fanfared announcements were premature in the extreme. All of which makes you wonder what was the point of the presentation? (Charm offensive for investors?)

Where are we in the design-process when we are only just having a fan engagement process years after the architect was first engaged? Are we to believe that he hasn't already been fully briefed? Elstone also said that club officials and their experts only recently met to discuss basics of configuration/general-admission capacity/corporate capacity etc.

This is several years into a process that was supposed to be taking up a large proportion of his every-working day, yet this is only getting discussed now? These are the initial phases of any stadium planning process, which needed to have been resolved long before we could ever make a decision to relocate in the first place.

Don Alexander
41 Posted 26/03/2018 at 16:39:32
Knowing nothing about high finance or stadium construction, I've found this and all the other threads on Bramley-Moore Dock very interesting indeed. Thanks to the many who've contributed.

The one thing that really concerned me was the city's loss of becoming the Commonwealth Games venue resulting in a very quick announcement that costs for Bramley-Moore Dock had all of a sudden zoomed, from £350M or so, to £500M.

That's a massive hike in costs and, if it's truly the case, I would expect any financially prudent owner to re-visit every part of the plans previously made known before the Bramley-Moore Dock initiative was announced with such a fanfare. That would surely have to include re-designing Goodison Park wouldn't it? I recall seeing detailed plans by a fellow fan on TW, an architect by profession I recall, who made the case for massively extending the Bullens Road/Park End stands to enable crowds of 50,000 minimum for far less expenditure than a new stadium demands. Obviously that's before the Main Stand and good old Gwladys Street could be improved too.

Is that option still something that our fans would accept if the £500mill just can't be raised?

Michael Kenrick
42 Posted 26/03/2018 at 17:48:14
With the Reds back-tracking on their Stanley Park plans, and electing to stay at an increasingly monstrous Anfield, perhaps there is yet more mileage in Tom's crusade for staying put and starting to rebuild the Old Lady.

The plans you refer to, Don, are still posted here on ToffeeWeb – in fact, we have a series of pages dedicated to the Redevelopment of Goodison Park. But the massive investment made by the club (much of it sadly wasted) with the blinkered intention of moving away, and absolutely zero consideration given to redevelopment, suggests that Tom's crusade bears too many similarities to 'flogging a dead horse'.

But, with this club... you can never say "Never"!

Alan McGuffog
43 Posted 26/03/2018 at 19:14:53
Don, maybe they will re-visit the idea of throwing up a cheap nasty McStadium in Gillmoss. Never say 'never'....
Dermot Byrne
44 Posted 26/03/2018 at 19:16:00
Michael. I just think that if there is a choice, surely we go and take over the city centre or near!

I think most fans, and especially those we hand the club over to, would be gutted if we stayed at Goodison. It has served us all so well and is our history, not future.

I know there is the West Ham and Arsenal mess up but my fear is we would sit in a new Goodison with a club with more money over the park still and those patronising camera pans showing that little club with a great history "so close".

I also imagine us sat there as Spurs love their new place after a few years.

But even if the floors are not marble, a ground on the river will change it all.

The camera wisdeshots one of the best riverfronts in the world and somewhere up there is that "monstrous Anfield".

I do believe Moshiri knows this. I am keeping faith in this dream.

Joe McMahon
45 Posted 26/03/2018 at 19:43:21
Dermot Byrne (44) with you all the way on this. Goodison is the past now, it's defo time to move on. Yes, there have been some good times at Goodison, but the good times were often sporadic, I use the phrase 'were', as there haven't been any (as we know) for well over two decades.

After Kings Dock fell through, I was hoping to see us in a new stadium before I turned 50; well, as I'm now 48, I'm left thinking will I see us in a new stadium before I'm 60??

Dermot Byrne
46 Posted 26/03/2018 at 20:01:59
Joe... with ya. The word "sporadic" is the reality. To some of us there when we had won leagues/cups, the memory is massive but we have no memory of the others who won more.

So let's pray the new step is brill as we own the city.

But, in the end, we are owned by a Monaco resident. Never forget that whether we move to the river, Aigburth (ha... the fun!), or Kidderminster.

Don Alexander
47 Posted 26/03/2018 at 22:38:32
Thanks again to Michael (#42) for including the links to proposals historically made in contemplation of redeveloping Goodison. Thanks also to Tom Hughes who I only now realise stimulated my interest with those historic proposals. I hope he forgives me for having erroneously stated he was an architect. His historic proposals are still very, very interesting though. The costs he proposed, if accurate and even taking into account the passage of years since he made them, must be eye-wateringly interesting to our Monaco-based billionaire accountant.

Let me remind readers that I have no faith at all in Kenwright or his lackey Elstone.

Ideally I'd like a new state-of-the-art stadium in an attractive location with a pleasant environment with excellent transport facilities. Unfortunately, Bramley-Moore Dock is totally bereft of those characteristics in my opinion, and any public expense needed to even begin providing them sits very badly with me given the demand for public monies of much more needy entities than a privately-owned football club, and yes, that's us.

That doesn't mean I want to live through a three- or four-year redevelopment of Goodison Park but, and it's a big 'but', if that's what it needs for us to even try to keep up with the London and Manchester clubs, it may be a pill worth swallowing, horribly distasteful and disappointing as it would be.

I for one have got used to swallowing such pills throughout the entire Kenwright tenure though. Maybe swallowing one for Moshiri would for the first time lead to better things.

Lawrence Green
48 Posted 26/03/2018 at 23:23:53
Don (#47),

What public monies are being used exclusively for the stadium? As I understand it, the council are willing to loan Everton x amount at a particular interest rate over a period of years. The City of Liverpool will make money on the deal and therefore it will have more in the pot to help fund areas of need. That's of course if the full council approve such a loan and if indeed Everton FC decide to continue with their current plans.

Don Alexander
49 Posted 26/03/2018 at 00:14:59
Lawrence (#48), if the City council decide to spend public money in providing a loan to Everton, it would really disappoint me if needy people for which they are responsible, and immediately needy people at that, were in any way denied the public monies they immediately need because the council spent the money instead on loaning money to us.

To loan on that basis would be as unacceptable to me as was that soulless bitch May last year denying a pay rise to nurses on the basis that "there is no magic money tree", as she said one week before she shook a billion pounds out of just such a money tree to give to the Democratic Unionist Party who now keep her in power.

Sorry to bring politics into it, but politics is people's lives, and deaths, sometimes literally dependent on immediate money supply. I doubt these considerations often apply in Monaco though.

Eric Myles
50 Posted 27/03/2018 at 06:12:27
Lawrence & Don, isn't the money coming from a central government fund set up for just such purposes?

So the money is not coming from a Council fund and not even coming from the ratepayers of Liverpool, but the interest payments will benefit the city.

Matthew Williams
51 Posted 29/03/2018 at 18:57:01
I believe by the time we move in to our new stadium the Premier League will not exist in it's present state.

The chaos the Qatar World Cup will do to European Leagues will be the optimum time for the elite clubs to form their elite new League & finally break away for new untold global riches.

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