Stuart Wallace is delighted that supporters have emphatically backed Foundation of Hearts’ governance proposals.
In the headline development to emerge from the FoH annual general meeting on Wednesday, members voted through plans that mean supporters will have the final say on the future of Tynecastle Park, club ownership, the team name and the club’s colours.
The overwhelming majority of the near-3000 members backed the proposals, meaning the supporters group has a robust vehicle for safeguarding the future of the club.
“We’re delighted with how many people chose to vote in both the director election and the governance poll,” Wallace, the Foundation chairman, told the Evening News. “The only time we’ve ever had more than that was when we were voting to vary the Bidco agreement to put money towards the main stand. 99 per cent voted in favour of approving the governance proposals.
“On one level, nothing has changed but what we do have now is agreement from the fans that, as we get towards the point of owning the majority shareholding and implement the governance model step by step, the four big decisions are in the hands of the supporters. Should we ever decide to sell the shares, it would have to go to a super-majority vote which would mean 90 per cent of the fans voting in favour. And the other three items that sit with them are that any disposal of Tynecastle, any proposed change to the name of the club and any proposed change in the team colours would also have to go back to the fans, which would be a straight 50/50 vote. It means none of what we think are the four biggest issues can ever be changed without the fans signing off on them. That will be implemented as we get up towards the point of ownership.”
In other notable developments at the annual general meeting, directors Garry Halliday and Louise Strutt were re-elected.
Wallace was also encouraged to report that contributions by FoH members over the past year remained within one per cent of the previous year’s figure.
“We were something like £22,000 down on the previous year, but in the scheme of £1.5m, it’s neither here nor there,” he added.
Foundation of Hearts are scheduled to take control of Hearts in the first half of 2020.