Club members told to pay up

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Suburban Club members have been told the club is in financial trouble and they each need to pay a $100 donation to help keep it afloat.

In a letter dated September 4, the chairman and president of the club wrote to each of its 4800 members advising them that the club is in “substantial arrears” to the Inland Revenue Department and other creditors.

Club chairman Ross Strawbridge told Nelson Weekly the situation was “gutting” and that the general manager of the club was no longer in the job.

Included in the letter was an invoice for $100 and the plea for cash has also been promoted over the sound system in the club over the past week.

But the board says it’s confident of paying off the $300,000 it owes by the end of September and has received a donation of more than $128,000 by one club member.

“In light of this, the board has given an undertaking to our bank and major creditors that all of our remaining creditors will be cleared by September 30,” said the letter, signed by Ross Strawbridge and president Jim Reeves.

It also said that the board became aware of the arrears in August as the debt had not been disclosed in monthly management reports. They say the club is trading profitably after some cost cutting measures.

Ross says the money has to be raised by the end of September. “We have to, there isn’t an option. The members want the club to survive so we have to do it.”

He says around 500 members have already paid the donation and they would need another 4000 to follow their lead. “We just need to get this hole that has been created cleaned up and we will be fine moving forward. Because of the loyalty of the club members we will pull through.”