THE Board running Cornish Pirates have sold Truro City Football Club to the owners of Cornwall RLFC, writes Phil Westren and Nigel Walrond.

Truro City FC's management and players, and Kernow Sport Ltd players and shareholders, were told today of the sale of the club to Ontario Inc (OI) a Canadian sports consortium who control the county's rugby league club.

Kernow Sport Board say they have had to take some very difficult decisions to ensure that both Cornish Pirates and Truro City (TCFC) remain viable going forward.

With the ambitions for the Stadium for Cornwall unable to be realised by the Cornish Pirates, and the need for Truro City to have a ground to return to in time for next season, steps were taken to secure new owners for the club.

An offer came from the directors of Ontario Inc to acquire TCFC, fund its operation going forward, and develop the Langarth site. In the KSL directors’ view, this offered the best chance for Truro City to continue to succeed.

“I’m sad to lose TCFC, it’s been a pleasure to support their ambitions, see them promoted, and have started to build their new home in Truro. We pass on a great club with a bright future and I wish them well with their new owners” said Kernow Sport Ltd owner Dicky Evans.

Speaking about the Pirates, Mr Evans said, “It is a sadness for Pirates to have to give up their ambition for a permanent home in Truro but the bigger reality of my declining health and sunset funding means that sensible governance decisions needed to be made to secure the future of both clubs.

"With TCFC in good hands, I am now totally focused on passing on the Pirates baton to new rugby owners. Cornish Pirates will remain in Penzance, their home and heartland. We may have lost the Stadium, but we have gained control of our own destiny.”

Pirates chairman Paul Durkin is clear about the positive future for the Pirates. 

“In the face of all the publicity about failing rugby clubs and the total lack of clarity from the RFU on the rugby structure and more importantly on funding going forward, I am proud to say that Pirates is financially secure and will continue to compete within the top 20 of English rugby.” 

He went on to say: “The club is an essential part of the fabric of Cornwall with a loyal fan base and widespread commercial and community support. As a safe bet, we are as good as it gets.”

KSL has evidence of the strength of that support with 500 new fan owners, the largest investors among them confirming their funds are to remain with KSL to support Pirates. 

“We know that a minority of new investors came in to support the football club” said KSL CEO Rebecca Thomas “and while they will remain shareholders in KSL, we have passed on a percentage of the crowdfunding raise to TCFC to honour their wishes.”

The directors of Ontario Inc said: “We are delighted to complete the takeover of Truro City Football Club. The club stands on the cusp of a new dawn and we are honoured to be leading Truro City into what promises to be another history-laden chapter in its long and distinguished history.

"We must place on record our thanks to Dicky Evans and the previous ownership for the work they have done in ensuring the club's survival through the turbulence of the COVID-19 pandemic and for steering it throughout its time in exile these past few seasons.”

A Truro City fans' forum is being held at the Hotel Vara in Truro tonight, starting at 7.30pm, when more details of the agreement will be released, with the prospect of Cornwall RLFC playing their home matches at some point in the future at Langarth.