Kettering Town have today been officially wound up at London’s High Court over a £58,000 debt.
In June, the club’s management company fended off moves by the taxman to wind it up, only to face a similar claim from Rushden & Diamonds (2008) Ltd - the company left over after Kettering’s former fierce local rival, Rushden & Diamonds FC, went to the wall in 2011.
Following multiple court hearings, High Court official Registrar Jones – who disclosed that he once represented Kettering Town as a lawyer – today ruled that it was right to exercise his discretion to wind up the club.
Lawyers for the club had sought one more adjournment of four or five weeks in order to settle the debt, which the Registrar said was recorded on papers before him as £58,000.
However, lawyers representing Rushden & Diamonds (2008) Ltd pushed for a “usual compulsory order” winding up the club, claiming that repeated adjournments for settlement had not succeeded in the past.
Kettering’s lawyers claimed that the creditor had not responded to correspondence since the last hearing, but the Registrar said that it was not in his power to force the creditor to settle for less than what it was owed.
As a result, he said: “It is right in the exercise of my discretion to make the usual compulsory order.”
The beleaguered club was in the Conference as recently as 2012 but two relegations had put it in the Southern League Division One Central.
The ruling places the club’s affairs in the hands of an Official Receiver, whose job now will be to do his best to ensure that debts are paid off by selling any assets available and then bringing business to a close.