ORGANISERS of a Bury FC phoenix club are asking for donations to help ensure there is a club playing in the town next season.

Setting up a new club is one of several ways forward for Shakers fans as they look to rebuild after expulsion from the Football League.

Bury were once again spared liquidation in London last week but are back before the High Court over a HMRC winding-up petition on December 18.

The club could in theory continue as a viable business but that would need a new owner to swiftly come forward and thrash out a deal with Capital Bridge Finance, who hold the mortgage over Gigg Lane.

Supporters’ Trust Forever Bury have spoken to parties interested in buying the club both in and out of liquidation but last week courted controversy by taking a 10 per cent share in a new limited company, Bury AFC Limited.

Bury AFC Ltd has a solitary director listed at Companies House, Robert Benwell, an entrepreneur with London offices who is also listed as the sole director at Gigg Lane Holdings Limited, among several other businesses.

The reaction to the decision, done without the say-so of members, has however prompted Forever Bury to recall a letter sent to Capital Bridge in support of Mr Benwell.

A meeting is being finalised where members will be given the chance to vote on the best way forward.

In a statement, the trust also called on tempers to be calmed as Shakers fans plot the next steps for their football club.

“We understand this has been a horrible period for fans in terms of the uncertainty surrounding the club, and that emotions are running high,” it read.

“We would like however to remind you that we are all volunteers working to save the club and ground and kindly ask that you refrain from continuing with the abuse that has been received on social media, message boards, text message and even in person over the last few days.”

Meanwhile those behind the phoenix club are continuing their work to try and guarantee there is a team for fans to support come August 2020, with fundraising the next stage.

They are required to provide proof of funds and a workable plan to the FA before being accepted into the non-league structure next season.

Events are also being organised to raise money, including a family event at the Arcade Club on January 2 and an evening with former Shaker Derek Spence on February 6 at the Stanley Club.

Should the club be saved in its current form then anyone who has made a donation will be given the option of what to do with the money.

“Whether you want to be a member with a vote, a shareholder earning interest or, to just donate, the club will be ours and, yours,” a statement read.

“The initial aim is to fund a Football Association League team in August 2020/21 season. We will not yet know in which league we will start, but come hell or high water we will start.

“When that initial target is reached, additional funds will be securely invested toward the purchase of Gigg Lane stadium.

“At present we can only take donations. Donations do not include club membership, shares or voting rights, that option will follow at a later date.”

The move has been backed by Buy Our Bury group, founded by Alan Skelton, which was looking to raise money to pay back small creditors who would lose out should the club be liquidated.

Just shy of £250,000 had been pledged and BOB hope that goodwill will now be passed onto the phoenix movement with the campaign ending.

“In light of recent developments, I think most everyone knows what they are, BOB did not reach the aim to ‘Buy Our Bury’,” a statement on social media read.

“It is of course unfortunate that we were not able to secure the future of BFC, but as we know, that became an insurmountable task.“We do believe w

e went some way to furthering the discussion of a better way to run a club, as a fan-owned club.

“With the phoenix well down the route to football in Bury next season, now is the time to close the BOB campaign.

“Thank you everybody who pledged support, we tried and we can all be proud of the total pledged, £243,406

“Now let's turn those pledges into money! Bury Phoenix are about to start a campaign asking for donations to ensure that Bury will have a team in a Football Association League playing in 2020/21.

“To enable this, they have to raise a considerable amount of cash as proof of funding for the establishment and running of the club for that season and beyond hopefully.

“We are therefore recommending you transfer your BOB pledges into hard cash for Bury Phoenix. They need our help and quickly!”

Those wishing to make donations should visit