18/04/2018 : Supporters Alliance Group : Supporter Alliance Meeting : Wednesday 18th April 2018
18 April 2018 : Supporter Alliance Meeting : Wednesday 18th April 2018
Supporter Alliance Meeting
Wednesday 18th April 2018 at 3pm

Venue: Huish Park


Present

Rich Rendell - Supporters Alliance Chairman
Kirstie Baker - Supporters Alliance Secretary
G&W - Paul Hadlow
YTCST - Sara Bradley
DSA - Sharon Swain
Junior Glovers - Marilyn Cottle
Glovers Trust - Brendan Owen and Terri Burt
Mark Palmer
David Mills - YTFC Supporter Director

Apologies

Cary Glovers - Rob Newport
Bridport Glovers - Tom Burt

Opening Comments:

RR welcomed all and welcomed guest Mark Palmer.

Minutes to approve from previous meetings

All approved. RR noted that his question regarding the terms of sponsorship agreements could not be answered due to a confidentiality clause.

Mark Palmer

RR introduced Mark Palmer to the group and the key points of his briefing to the meeting were:

• MP explained that in September, Yeovil Town Holdings had asked him to produce an overview of the Club and potential ways forward.

• MP had carried out detailed research and had made a report to the YTFC Board in December. This set out the outline of a recommended way forward on a short, medium and long-term basis. The plan envisaged improvements in the 2018/2019 season but looked forward as far as seven years. It had not been possible to publicise the details as much of it was commercial sensitive data.

• MP’s work covers 3 areas – Operations (including Football, Academy and Recruitment), Attendance & Supporters, and Business & Investments.

• On field MP said that over the last few years the club has been constrained by budget, not been able to retain players, over dependence on loans and the average age of players being relatively low due to these factors. MP said he was working with the club to find ways to improve this situation, via increased investment into the club.

• MP said the Academy structure should be able to generate players with a realistic prospect of playing in the first team but currently that was not likely as understandably Academy graduates could not quickly step up to EFL standard. Ideally the Club would have to an under 23 team to help Academy player transition to the first team.

• MP said the club needs a better system in place to scout players. MP has stated to put things in place for these recommendations, however some need investment.

• MP recognised that season ticket sales and attendance was key as ticket income was a vital component of assembling the playing budget.

• MP confirmed the Club is not for sale but is looking for investment and obviously terms will come with that investment. Conversations with possible investors are occurring. MP has met with key parties since October with the aim of unlocking development potential. This has had positive reactions from all parties involved.

In response to question MP confirmed:

• He was looking at the off the field staffing structure and positions l such as a Director of Football and General Manager were being considered.

• The club and supporters should work closely to together. In response to a particular question on shareholdings by fans, MP said he had an open mind on such matters but the level of supporter shareholding would depend on the investment model the club adopted.

• All agreed that catering facilities were outdated and any long-term plan needed to look at significant investment to improve them.

• He hoped to have more news on progress before the start of the 2018-19 season.

RR again stated he felt that any plan MP recommended should be released to supporters.

Stadium maintenance update – JH joined the meeting

JH confirmed that work was due over the summer period to:

• Improve electrical systems
• Repair seats
• Improve the PA system
• Improve floodlighting.
• Potholes around the stadium

SS – suggested fans can help more in the closed season. She explained that last year the DSA organised and painted the steps in the stadium and suggested that the other Alliance groups could help to make some things happen. This was welcomed. JH to create a list of potential jobs

Season Tickets

DM circulated a copy of the renewal form which was going to be issued. It was explained that the senior and adult prices are frozen, young person rate has been reduced and the category increased age limit raised to 23. The juniors season ticket prices are the same, but match day price will reduce. In the renewal packs there is the option to purchase the lounge memberships and car parking whereas before it was all separate.

On season ticket prices generally, RR said that it was positive that all prices had either been frozen or reduced and that some of the ideas proposed by the Alliance had been adopted. However, he was disappointed that a reduction in lounge fees for season ticket holders had not been possible

Results of Alliance to date

DM reminded that in the past it had been agreed that the Alliance should record it achievements to date via meeting minutes so that member organisations could more easily show the value of being involved. DM said he would reinstate this via these minutes.

The current list of areas where the Alliance has positively influenced change at YTFC is:

✓ Alliance suggestion adopted by the club for lower price season tickets (and increase age band from 21) for under 23s
✓ Alliance suggestion adopted by the club for lower match prices for young persons and under 16s
✓ Subsidised travel to Checkatrade semi-final game
✓ Ticket bundles for 2017/18 season to give fans some flexibility in purchasing tickets
✓ Pop up tea bars deployed when needed to assist with queue times at half time
✓ Extra marquee staff deployed to improve service levels.
✓ Introduction of Match Day hotline for service or anti-social behaviour issues.
✓ Revised wording of the Alliance Objectives, Terms & Conditions
✓ Tab on website for the Alliance where updates and minutes of meetings can be viewed
✓ Chased pot hole and repair programmes at Huish Park
✓ Trial of relaxation of playing shirts ban in Alec Stock lounge.

AOB

MC requested that it is noted that she recently requested to hire the lounge bar for a meeting with a 7.30pm start, but upon arrival the booking had been confused and almost ended up not going ahead.

BO – In December the Trust discussed the possibility of a wooden structure to be put in the grounds for the Glovers Trust to use on a match day. The Trust have obtained quotes however are waiting for the T&Cs. DM said he was working on possibly bringing in new updated T&C’s for all Alliance member organisations who wished to have a match day presence. This would be vital for GT as the club could not offer them better terms that the G&Ws were subject to.

It was mentioned that the DSA are currently fundraising for in order to create improved facilities to hold wheelchairs and to act as an information point on match days.

As discussed at previous meetings it was mentioned that the Alliance would benefit from a briefing on the legal obligations the club faced that sometime made improvement fans wanted difficult for the club to achieve. It was agreed to enquire if YTFC Director David Lee could attend the next or a future meeting.

It was suggested that the club, with the Alliance’s help, could host evenings based around England world cup games. It was felt that this would be a positive event to build fan/club relations and the bar/food takings would be lucrative for the club (and would remove the need for any cover charges). CR to be approached

Date of next meeting

Wednesday 16th May at 11am


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