Leyland’s Royal British Legion hoping for a more positive 2013

Looking to the future: Chairman of Leyland's Royal British Legion Club, Jim Eskdale
Looking to the future: Chairman of Leyland's Royal British Legion Club, Jim Eskdale
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Members of Leyland’s Royal British Legion say 2013 could be the year the club is finally out of debt for good.

Chairman Jim Eskdale has quashed rumours that the club is bankrupt and could be closing down, and is encouraging more members to join.

The School Lane club was threatened with closure last year after building up £140,000 of debts, but a plan was agreed in January to secure its future.

The development will see the club house reduced in size and seven homes and a corner shop built on the site.

Financial company Minotaur was called in with the club on the brink of closure and helped members pull together the plans.

Now, it’s just a case of waiting for a building firm to take on the job.

Mr Eskdale said: “We’re really hoping that 2013 will be the year we can move on from this and put our troubles behind us.

“Despite what people think, we are not bankrupt and we are not closing, but unfortunatley member numbers are down because people still think there are problems.

“We do feel the need to get this work done quickly because as soon as the work is done, the club will start to get some money back.

“Minotaur is tying us over until then though, and the average member isn’t affected by our money troubles.

“It’s true there is still a long way to go, but it’s being dealt with.”

Mr Eskdale said the bowling green will not be affected by the development, and admitted the club would probably have fallen through years ago if it wasn’t for the popularity of its bowling facilities and dance floor.

“We’re looking to the future now,” he said. “We had a meeting with Minotaur a few weeks ago and everything is still on course.

“I don’t know when a building firm will come along to do the work; it could be tomorrow, or it could be in a month or ever longer, but the plans certainly haven’t been forgotton from our end.”

He added: “We had a very successful poppy appeal in November, which has also helped things for now.”