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Thursday, November 22, 2012
Past annual meetings at Norwich City have at times been stormy affairs. As the Canaries’ board of directors prepare for tonight’s AGM we look at some headline-making AGMs from Carrow Road over the years.
• August 1973: Geoffrey Watling resigns after nearly 17 years as City chairman, just two days before the first game of what proved to be a turbulent season. Three months later, manager Ron Saunders resigns after a row with Watling’s successor, Arthur South.
• September 1982: Shareholders are warned “The financial life of this club hangs on a very thin thread” by director Ian Coutts after City report record losses of more than £500,000 and make a public appeal for cash. The following April, chairman Sir Arthur South tells an extraordinary meeting that City have rejected a £1m bid from a pop star to buy the club.
• September 1987: A possible move from Carrow Road is the bombshell dropped by chairman Robert Chase, who says proposed improvements to the inner ring road and Riverside would make life impossible with a “four-lane flyover” going past the main entrance.
• January 2003: City hold their annual meeting outdoors in the Barclay Stand in the bleak midwinter after 6,000 new shareholders invest in the club in the wake of the ITV Digital crisis. The 300 who turn up are told by Delia Smith: “This is going to be the best football club in the world.”
• October 2005: The “Charlton project” features in a 15-minute video as City look to model themselves on the London club they admire so much. Just 3½ years later, both teams are in League One.
• November 2008: City boss Glenn Roeder reacts to a shareholder’s lengthy question on tactics with the comment: “Sorry, I must have missed your tenure as England manager.” It may well have been his idea of a joke, but the audience weren’t laughing.