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Last Updated: Friday, 5 December, 2003, 11:49 GMT
Club challenges league rules
Exeter City's St James' Park ground
Exeter City reached agreement with the majority of creditors in October
Exeter City Football Club is challenging the Nationwide Conference in the High Court in a dispute over the club's financial problems.

The club fears one of the league's rules leaves it open to a legal challenge from the Inland Revenue which could ultimately force it to close.

The club had hoped a deal agreed with the majority of its creditors over debts of about 4m had saved it from going under.

But the Inland Revenue, which is among the creditors and is owed about 350,000, is going to court to challenge the agreement.

Thrashed out

In October, club representatives met creditors and thrashed out a Corporate Voluntary Arrangement (CVA), under which those owed money will receive 10p in the pound, to be paid off over the next five years.

But there is a strict rule, enforced by the Nationwide Conference, forcing any club that goes into a CVA to pay its football creditors, such as the players, in full.

The rule stipulates that clubs which do not comply will be expelled from the league.

But the Inland Revenue is challenging the CVA because it believes the football creditors' part of the agreement is unlawful.

Fans gained control of the club early in September when the Exeter City Supporters' Trust took over the majority shareholding of former club chairman Ivor Doble for an undisclosed fee.

The club was relegated from Division Three at the end of last season into the Nationwide Conference, where they are currently enjoying a successful season.

Club faces court challenge
26 Nov 03  |  Devon
Club seeks government help
05 Nov 03  |  Devon
Club's immediate future secure
16 Oct 03  |  Devon
Fans take over struggling club
05 Sep 03  |  Devon


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