IN what has come as a huge shock to its many members and patrons, administrators have been appointed to Club Coffs on West High, formerly known as the Coffs Harbour Catholic Sporting and Recreation Club.
The board of directors placed the company into voluntary administration with David Morgan and Morgan Chubb from Clout and Associates appointed.
Club president Paul Griffin and CEO Carl Mower said in a statement the action was taken with a view to honouring the club’s outstanding debts and allowing the club to continue providing its usual services and facilities to members and guests.
They also said the decision was “extremely difficult and heartbreaking”.
The statement said while the club had “continued to service its debts, a decision made by its previous financial institution not to continue its lending facilities to the club; general community economic hardship; an expensive legal battle, and; a decrease in turnover throughout all areas of the club, had meant that the arrangements in place had been difficult to maintain”.
They said a resurgence in operations since the appointment of two new caterers was an encouraging trend and the last six months had seen extensive improvement work inside and outside the club to improve the atmosphere, comfort and facilities for members and guests.
“The administrators have met with the club staff and informed them of the voluntary administration decision,” the CEO and president said.
“All staff were reassured that their annual, sick leave entitlements and superannuation are in order and fully protected.
“A date and time for a members’ information session will be released shortly.
“All creditors will receive notification from the administrators in relation to a forthcoming creditors’ meeting.
“Whilst our action has been extremely difficult and heartbreaking we want to reassure all our members and guests that it is business as usual and that we and the administrators are confident that long-term we will continue club operations and begin to turn the club into profit.”
Club Coffs changed its name in 2009 as part of ambitious plans for a $2 million facelift for the club in West High Street.
Part of the plan was for a large covered alfresco dining area; children’s play area; barbecue and barefoot bowling area.
The plan, which has not been implemented, involved the removal of one of the club’s bowling greens, which proved unpopular with many of the club’s 7500 members.
Administrator David Morgan said yesterday he appreciated everyone was concerned, but they had only had one day to look at the situation.
“We want to keep everything as transparent as possible and more information will be released,” Mr Morgan said.
Members and guests are being asked to support the club to ensure its future.
The official statement concluded: “There will be, we are sure, much speculation in regards to the future of Club Coffs on West High and whilst the months ahead will be hard and a rocky road, we want to encourage all our members and guests to support your club, it’s for the club’s future that we all must do so – ‘business as normal’.”