Motherwell FC: Well Society welcome ex-owners John Boyle and Les Hutchison receiving £1.5 million total payoff

John Boyle bought Motherwell FC in 1998 before putting the club up for sale after it plunged into administration in 2002
John Boyle bought Motherwell FC in 1998 before putting the club up for sale after it plunged into administration in 2002

Motherwell FC clearing virtually all debts by paying around £1.5 million to former owners John Boyle and Les Hutchison has been hailed by current owners the Well Society

With that significant debt paid off, only around £80,000 is still owed by the club through loans to five fans.
Well Society joint chairman Douglas Dickie said in a statement that he would like to thank all members for their financial support to date and would ask that this support is continued going forward.
He added: “While we have already made a substantial investment into the club, the continuation of your support will allow the Well Society as owners of Motherwell FC to plan the way forward from this current sound footing."
News that 'Well had paid off Boyle and Hutchison broke on Friday when club chief executive Alan Burrows told the BBC: “It’s very important now for nobody to rest on their laurels, for no-one to put the tools away.
“This should be viewed as the catalyst for what we do going forward rather than a pat-on-the-back exercise. It’s always nice to do that, but clubs who think they have achieved what they had to achieve can go stale quickly.”
Burrows also refused to rule out a move away from Fir Park, Motherwell’s home since way back in 1895, but which was largely redeveloped in the mid 1990s.
“I think everything has to be on the table,” Burrows said. “We have got to look to always try our best to keep up with modern standards, both in terms of training ground and a stadium.
“From my own point of view, I have been working within the ground for a long period of time.
“We are now in 2019 and the stadium probably has to be a debate and a question that is put on the agenda quite high in the not too distant future. A training ground goes without saying.
“We have a really good facility at Dalziel Park, but we need to look at how we can either develop that or somewhere else to try to take the club to the next level.”
The current feelgood factor around Fir Park is in stark contrast to the doom and gloom of the club’s adminstration of 2002, which saw the club only saved from relegation by a technicality.
Now the Well Society sees Motherwell flourishing as the only Scottish Premiership club without a benefactor, relying instead on player sales and fans’ money.
Burrows added: “I never thought the club wouldn’t get to this stage because I’ve been the person responsible over the past five years to try to get us there.
“I want to praise our chairman, Jim McMahon, who was brought in from the point of administration to be a guiding light through that and he’s been here ever since.
“He has been phenomenal for the football club. He is the unsung hero.
“We need to now look at how we kick the club on and make it modern, vibrant and attractive as a community-owned club.
“That’s my focus and will be a big part of the board and the Well Society’s focus to try to make that happen.”
Attendances at Motherwell are up again this season, thanks to an entertaining, attacking style of football being played under manager Stephen Robinson.
Speaking after Satuday’s 2-1 home win over Livingston, Robinson said: “Livingston throw every ball into your box and you have to defend it so credit to them.
“That’s not a criticism, that’s a compliment.
“I thought Peter Hartley was outstanding, I thought Liam Donnelly was outstanding, big Deccy (Gallagher).
“So relied on our defence a lot today, Mark Gillespie a great save and then just a wee bit of quality to win the game.
“I thought we thoroughly deserved to win the game.
“We dominated large amounts of it.
“So we’re delighted with the three points.”
On the Livi penalty awarded for a Devante Cole foul, Robbo added: “Devante’s adamant it wasn’t a penalty, the referee’s adamant it was. We didn’t let that decision affect us. We showed the character to respond.”

In January 2015, Les Hutchison bought Motherwell FC. He sold it to fans group the Well Society in October 2016.

In January 2015, Les Hutchison bought Motherwell FC. He sold it to fans group the Well Society in October 2016.