CARLISLE United say they are financially stronger, more resilient and better prepared for the future as they submit their latest financial accounts.

Released on Monday, the figures for the year ending June 30 last year show that headline income fell by £400,000 when compared with 2017/18, down from £4m to £3.6m.

However, business costs fell by £129,000 in the same period, which the club says will help offset the fall in income.

Wages and salaries at the club were reduced by more than £540,000 (17 per cent down), which was combined with a switch away from long-term fixed player costs to more variable short-term costs.

The overall financial loss for the period was £667,000, with total debt rising to £2.89m - up from £2.26m on the previous June. This rise is due to borrowing to cover operating loss, provided by the Commercial Funding Facility.

The club’s accounts have been filed at Companies House.

“2018/19 was a year of change on and off the field as we accelerated the transition and transformation process that started late in the previous year,” said club chief executive, Nigel Clibbens.

“The financial results, particularly the very significant reduction in our costs, reflect progress with this difficult but necessary change.

“The club became financially stronger, more resilient and better prepared for the future. This has proved beneficial as we now face the impact of the coronavirus in 2020.”

Mr Clibbens was grateful of the ongoing support from Edinburgh Woolen Mill.

“The club was again grateful to have the continuing benefit from the external Commercial Funding Facility provided by EWM,” he continued.

“This gave the club the breathing space, assurance and flexibility to continue this transition, and has enabled the club to focus on long-term success over chasing short-term results.

“Despite the improvement in financial performance and lower cost budgets, it still shows the importance of football fortune and other funding to support this club, just like most others.”

The chief executive paid tribute to Blues fans.

“On behalf of all at the club, we are grateful to the loyal supporters of Carlisle United.

“While current events continue to be challenging for everyone, we are on the right course and are moving in the right direction for sustainable future success.”

Underlying contribution - which measures longer-term ability to pay for day-to-day running of the club, from its own trading, without calling on external funding e.g. from shareholders - rose from £1.37m to £1.5m.

The club says it has continued to increase the breadth, depth and detail of its financial reporting this year, in an effort to be more transparent.

It says it believes this is the right thing to do and will “help fans and stakeholders to increase their understanding of the way the club operates”.

Football fortune - which is income from windfalls such as cup income, player sales and sell-on income - was down from £450,000 to £242,000, with no significant player sales to report.

Meanwhile, operating losses fell by £207,000 from £950,000 to £743,000.

The club also reported net assets of £4.11m, unchanged overheads and said they’d extinguished £145,000 of shareholder debt.

A statement from Carlisle United Official Supporters Club said: “We feel there is nothing further we could add to the statement contained within the accounts from Nigel Clibbens, which gives the full picture.”