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Deal Town Football Club boardroom battle could be resolved soon

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A "peace deal" may finally be within reach between the two groups who have been fighting for control of Deal Town Football Club.

After months of boardroom wrangling, the two sides – one led by chairman David Reid with the backing of the Supporters Club and the other headed by Steve Bowers with the support of Deal Town Rangers – have sat around a table during the past couple of weeks trying to thrash out their differences.

The need to end their dispute quickly had become critical because of the danger of Deal losing a grant of £250,000 from the Coalfields Regeneration Trust towards the interior refurbishment of the Charles Ground’s new clubhouse.

The CRT had set a deadline of May 31 for the two sides "to mutually agree a way forward" regarding the running of the club, otherwise they would withdraw their grant offer.

Mr Bowers said: "We have had some productive meetings with two members of the Deal committee, Roy Smith and Derek Lewis, with the clubhouse project manager David Hannent acting as mediator.

"It’s my belief we have made sufficient progess to convince the Coalfields Regeneration Trust we are capable of reaching an agreement soon. We are now waiting for confirmation from the CRT that this is the case and I’m hoping to arrange another meeting in the next few days."

With Mr Reid currently on holiday, Mr Smith and Mr Lewis have been handling the negotiations on his behalf. Mr Smith said: "We are finally moving in the right direction."

A spokeswoman for the Coalfield Regeneration Trust said: "We sometimes extend our deadlines if there are extenuating circumstances."

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