Malmesbury Vics demand apology for "lease breach slur"

Malmesbury Vics demands apology for "drink slur"

Simon Killane

First published in News
Last updated

MALMESBURY Vics officials are demanding a public apology over what they insist are wrong claims by councillors that they are in breach of their lease because of the amount of alcohol sold in their clubhouse.

Secretary Julie Exton said the claims, made at last week’s town council meeting, were an attempt to discredit the club and produced a letter from the Vics’ lawyer backing their stance.

She has also lodged a formal complaint with Wiltshire Council about her council colleague Simon Killane.

He has accused club members of a hate campaign and declared he will not support any bid for funding by the club under its current leadership.

The allegations were made as the Vics, who have been hit by repeated flooding at the Flying Monk Ground for the past two winters, were applying for a £500 grant to help them stage their main VicFest fundraiser.

In his letter solicitor James Lester said the suggestion that the club was in breach was not correct and that the covenant concerning alcohol was not likely to be enforceable anyway.

Mrs Exton, who is also a member of the council and had to leave the chamber for the debate after declaring an interest, told the Standard this week: “I want a public apology.”

The lease contains covenants stating that the tenant will not use the premises for licensed trade, off sales or for a drinking club.

But in it the landlord also agrees “not to seek to enforce the covenants unless compelled to do so as a result of action on the part of another party seeking to enforce against it any covenant or obligation in force at the date hereof.”

Mr Lester explained in his letter: “The history is that there is a covenant on the Town Council’s title in respect of alcohol. It is an old covenant and I am sure it is unenforceable. At the time of the granting of the lease, the Town Council agreed with this, but felt that they needed to have the covenant in the lease just in case it was enforceable.

“However, they agreed to not take any steps against the club unless any steps were taken against them to enforce the covenant. That will not happen.”

The club is also questioning whether Cllr Killane, who as the Standard reported last week, is the subject of a petition calling for his resignation as Wiltshire Councillor, should take part in the debate when the grant application is discussed again on May 13, because of his stated opposition.

This time the club is asking for £500 to be used as a rent holiday.

Mrs Exton paid tribute to fundraisers who had helped the club since she revealed it had virtually nothing in the bank. She said: “I have been able to pay some bills and that has been really, really great.”

Comments (4)

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2:14pm Thu 8 May 14

ryuk-remmy says...

A simple sorry should of already been made it seems a simple misunderstanding of a lease and im still shocked that the apologies have not been made
A simple sorry should of already been made it seems a simple misunderstanding of a lease and im still shocked that the apologies have not been made ryuk-remmy
  • Score: 23

12:33pm Sat 10 May 14

Dave Barclay says...

I find this whole thing very sad. There is no excuse for making vile comments on Facebook, but for Mr Killane to use that as a stick to beat the football club with is equally wrong. He should know better.
I find this whole thing very sad. There is no excuse for making vile comments on Facebook, but for Mr Killane to use that as a stick to beat the football club with is equally wrong. He should know better. Dave Barclay
  • Score: 19

11:16pm Sat 10 May 14

LocalJackdaw says...

This was a deliberate biased expression of a personal dislike of the vics and their management with a view to changing the football club in the same way as they have taken over the council. Its not really a surprise t be honest.

The question shouldn't be why they did or said these things to the club to the club but given the connection with planning we should be asking if there is another reason behind wanting the vics off this valuable town centre land?
This was a deliberate biased expression of a personal dislike of the vics and their management with a view to changing the football club in the same way as they have taken over the council. Its not really a surprise t be honest. The question shouldn't be why they did or said these things to the club to the club but given the connection with planning we should be asking if there is another reason behind wanting the vics off this valuable town centre land? LocalJackdaw
  • Score: 16

5:16pm Sun 11 May 14

debsy20 says...

I think it is absolutely despicable behaviour to insinuate that the vics are operating without a proper licence - as if they haven't had enough to contend with re sorting out floods etc., When this grant is reapplied for two councillors who have publicly stated they will not help the vics under current leadership should stay out of the meeting because I cannot now see how they can give an unbiased decision given that they have announced in no uncertain terms they will not assist. Behaviour like this should not be tolerated by the council and they should be doing something about it.
I think it is absolutely despicable behaviour to insinuate that the vics are operating without a proper licence - as if they haven't had enough to contend with re sorting out floods etc., When this grant is reapplied for two councillors who have publicly stated they will not help the vics under current leadership should stay out of the meeting because I cannot now see how they can give an unbiased decision given that they have announced in no uncertain terms they will not assist. Behaviour like this should not be tolerated by the council and they should be doing something about it. debsy20
  • Score: 13

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