Rochdale AFC fans meet new directors following Ogden family investment

Date published: 04 June 2024

A packed room of supporters in the Ratcliffe Bar at the Crown Oil Arena took the opportunity on Monday night (3 June) to meet the three new members of the board of directors of Rochdale AFC, Cameron Ogden, Jamie Willoughby and Adam Saul, for the first time.

The meeting began with a presentation in which the vision of the club moving forward was outlined and was followed by dozens of questions asked by supporters being answered.

Cameron Ogden, new co-chairman of the board of directors, opened by explaining his mother and father [Sir Peter Ogden and Lady Catherine Ogden] are from Rochdale, and how honoured and privileged he felt at now being part of the club. He added that he was very excited to be looking forward to supporting the club's ambition to be successful on and off the pitch.

Jamie Willoughby explained the new share structure following the Ogden family purchase of 6.8 million shares.

Cameron Ogden, Edward Ogden and Tiffany Chawner, the children of Sir Peter and Lady Ogden, have each purchased just over 2,284,000 Ordinary A shares, nominally valued at 22 pence each, totalling £666,666 each.

Cameron, Edward and Tiffany each own 23 percent of the club.

Meanwhile, co-chairman Simon Gauge and director Richard Knight have converted their outstanding loans to the club into shares - totalling 1,991,697 shares and 152,205 shares respectively. Mr Gauge now owns 21%, Mr Knight 2%, the Dale Supporters Trust owns 1.6% and the remainder is owned by past directors and supporters.

Adam Saul spoke about the club’s financial targets as part of a five-year plan to make the club sustainable. He added that the new members of the board were here long term and would be working to ensure the club functions as efficiently as possible by creating working groups fo staff and board members that will be tasked with specific issues and report to the board monthly. He stressed that the board will be looking at the existing infrastructure of the club to see if there is an opportunity to generate additional income from the club’s assets. He also praised Ryan Bradley and the team at the Rochdale AFC Community Trust for the “extraordinary work” they do.

Co-chairman Simon Gauge said the plan was to ensure the club becomes stable and sustainable and achieves EFL status again by the end of the 2026/27 season. He explained that an increase in the playing budget would enable the club to hold on to players and to recruit new players, with the expectation that would secure a play-off place at the end of the forthcoming season.

During the presentation Andy Duff, the club’s new director of commercial operations, who starts work today (Tuesday 4 June), was introduced.

Following the presentation there was an extensive question and answer session during which the club directors gave comprehensive answers to lots of questions asked by supporters, one of which sought clarification of what is involved in the proposed ‘golden share’, which would be given to the Dale Supporters Trust. Jamie Willoughby explained the idea is to protect the ground, name and colours of the club and give the Dale Trust a veto over any changes. This, he said, would require a change to the club’s Articles of Association, and a draft would be made available to the Dale Trust before shareholder approval was sought.

In answering questions, members of the board also revealed proposals to have a ‘shadow board’ and that they are actively seeking a training ground where all the club’s teams could be together.

George Delves, chief operating officer, answered a question about player recruitment explaining that the club’s relationship with football consultancy ‘MRKT Insights’ continues and they “provide data” and suggest “initial targets” which are evaluated by the club’s technical team and seen by the directors, but stressed the final decisions on recruitment and retention of players lay with head coach, Jim McNulty.

Amongst the supporters asking questions was the Dale supporting Labour Party candidate for Rochdale, Paul Waugh, he asked the board what support they would expect from the town’s MPs. The answer came from Simon Gauge who explained he would want the MPs to help galvanise support for the club.

The meeting was live streamed for supporters who were unable to attend, and the video can be viewed at:

Do you have a story for us?

Let us know by emailing
All contact will be treated in confidence.

To contact the Rochdale Online news desk, email or visit our news submission page.

To get the latest news on your desktop or mobile, follow Rochdale Online on Twitter and Facebook.

While you are here...

...we have a small favour to ask; would you support Rochdale Online and join other residents making a contribution, from just £3 per month?

Rochdale Online offers completely independent local journalism with free access. If you enjoy the independent news and other free services we offer (event listings and free community websites for example), please consider supporting us financially and help Rochdale Online to continue to provide local engaging content for years to come. Thank you.

Support Rochdale Online