'We keep opening the door - Preston North End ownership state of play outlined by Peter Ridsdale

Preston North End director Peter Ridsdale and chairman Craig HemmingsPreston North End director Peter Ridsdale and chairman Craig Hemmings
Preston North End director Peter Ridsdale and chairman Craig Hemmings | CameraSport - Alex Dodd
The PNE director has discussed the ownership situation at Deepdale

Preston North End director Peter Ridsdale says the Hemmings family will continue to support the club until a suitable, new owner comes along and expresses interest.

The Lilywhites' owner Trevor Hemmings CVO passed away in October 2021, having bought the club in the summer of 2010. Since then, the support of the family has continued - with son Craig the chairman of the football club.

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There was the situation in February 2022 with American businessman Chris Kirchner, who has since been formally charged with fraud and money laundering. Nothing has ever materialised with other 'interested' parties since then and Ridsdale has reiterated his belief that the Hemmings family should be appreciated, until the day comes for someone else to take control.

"Outside of the Premier League, frankly the amount of investment required - just to keep clubs going - you are not going to get that money back," said Ridsdale, in an interview with BBC Radio Lancashire. "I have seen a number of comments on social media about the Hemmings family and how much they've put in; some people have commented 'oh, but they will get it back when they sell'. The reality is that a football club, at our level - unless we get to the Premier League - is probably worth, I don't know, 30 per cent or less than the money that has already been invested by the Hemmings family. This isn't a money making enterprise.

"This is a fact that we have a family who are committed to the local area; committed to Preston North End Football Club. Mr (Trevor) Hemmings first got involved in the early seventies and of course his family have now taken it on. And without them, we would be out of business. For those who think we should be opening the doors at Euxton and looking for someone with an oil well under their arm, we keep opening the door and having a look - but there is nobody there. And if anybody were to be interested, we would always welcome them. But again, I would stress that under Financial Fair Play rules - even if a multi-billionaire turned up tomorrow, you can only lose so much money ever year and we are right up against that at the moment."

On the support of the Hemmings family, Ridsdale added: "Their support is totally unwavering and it is outstanding. We sit down each summer and they tell me how much cash they wish to put in. We balance that against FFP regulations and I know that cash will be there come hell or high water. I think they are under-appreciated and people should take one step back and have a look at 'What would happen if?'

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"What they are also saying, very clearly, is if somebody turned up at the door and said 'here is how much cash we've got; this is what we'd like to do with the football club' - and the belief was they could sustain it and take it forward, they would be welcomed with open arms. Nobody is here in a sort of bunker mentality, saying 'leave us alone, we don't want to talk to you'."

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