Baillie hopeful as Poppies go up in front of courts

Poppies boss Thomas Baillie and assistant Dean Thomas
Poppies boss Thomas Baillie and assistant Dean Thomas

Thomas Baillie is hoping Kettering Town will get the chance to build a future for themselves as the club prepare to go in front of the courts tomorrow (Monday).

The Poppies have been served with a winding up order by HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) with a hearing due to take place at the Royal Courts of Justice in London sometime after 11.30am tomorrow.

The club are sending a legal representative to the hearing and the Northants Telegraph understands they will be seeking a 14 or 28-day adjournment to give them time to gather the relevant information and pay off whatever is owed. It is not yet known how much money the club owes.

The worst case scenario is that the club could be wound up in court tomorrow.

It is the latest blow to the Poppies’ bid to give themselves a future under the leadership of Ritchie Jeune, although the club is still owned by Imraan Ladak and remains tied to a long-term lease at Nene Park.

On the pitch, Kettering’s Evo-Stik Southern League Premier Division campaign came to an end on Saturday as they drew 0-0 at promotion hopefuls Chesham United.

And boss Baillie conceded that, for the time being at least, off-field issues are likely to dominate the next few days.

“The club are confident the off-field issues will be resolved,” Baillie said.

“They are sending a legal representative to the hearing tomorrow and I know they are very hopeful and getting the time to sort out these issues.

“There are a lot of people who have worked extremely hard to ensure the club saw out the season. There are plenty of people out there who thought it was an impossible task. But they have been proved wrong.

“We have crossed every bridge that has been put in front of us and it would be devastating for everyone if the club doesn’t get the chance to build a brighter future.”

The season ended on a low key at Chesham and Baillie admitted it was a “fair result” as the Poppies finished with a goalless draw.

And, should things go in the club’s favour tomorrow, he expects the managerial situation to be sorted out in “a matter of days”.

“We rode our luck in the first half, they were a big and strong unit and you can see why they are third in the league,” Baillie added.

“We were better in the second half and we could have scored a goal or two but overall it was a fair outcome. It was nice to see our boys finish on a positive note.

“It is a difficult one now because we have had all the players who are here are now asking us what is going to happen.

“I expect the managerial situation to be sorted out quickly because whoever is in charge will need time to go and watch any remaining games this season and continue the preparations.

“Dean (Thomas) and I have already started those preparations and we will continue until someone tells us not to.”