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Newsletter 9th November 2018

Memberships – As previously mentioned we now have some additional volunteer resource to handle membership administration. We are keen to make sure our records are as up to date as possible and so if you think we need to update your address, e-mail or phone number please e-mail us at membership@marinerstrust.co.uk. Also, please contact us if you are unsure of your membership status or if you would like a copy of your membership certificate. Anyone who wishes to join or re-join can do so here: membership, we really appreciate your support.

Junior Members – We have some great opportunities for our Junior Members coming up. First of all we have teamed up with our colleagues at SD to give young supporters a chance of appearing on this years SD Xmas card. Follow the link here for details of how to enter: Xmas card competition. E-mail entries can be sent kristine@marinerstrust.co.uk or drop a copy to the ticket office marked for the attention of Mariners Trust. Closing date for the competition is Friday 16th November.

We are also delighted to announce that we have teamed up with the club to put on a FREE Xmas party for junior supporters. This will be held on Thursday 13th December from 4pm -6pm in McMenemy’s at BP. GTFC players and management will be in attendance and there will be a disco, food, competitions and a free gift for every child attending. All U16’s must be accompanied by a responsible adult. Places are limited but our junior members will be given first priority and so any junior members wishing to attend please let us know by e-mailing us at enquiries@marinerstrust.co.uk by next Friday 16 November. After that date, any remaining places will be allocated on a first come first served basis to all juniors including non-members.

Last, but not least, we will be running a FREE draw at the Swindon game on 15th December for Junior Members to win a Mascot place at a game of their choice between January and the end of the season. If you would like to enter please e-mail us at enquiries@marinerstrust.co.uk.

Junior memberships and renewals can be done here: Junior Membership

EX -Player Guests – Tomorrow we welcome back Tony Ford, please give him a warm welcome and if you see him don’t hesitate to say hello and have a chat.

Next week for the Crawley game we have Mike Hickman visiting from Australia. Mike was a key player in the teams of the late 60’s/early 70’s and was always a fans favourite because of his wholehearted commitment every game. We have taken the opportunity to also invite back a number of his colleagues from that era for a bit of a reunion and so far we have the following confirmed : Dave Boylen, Harry Wainman, Bobby Ross, Owen Simpson, Mike Czuczman, Phil Hubbard, Alan Woodward, Stuart Gray, Neil Freeman, Clive Wiggington, Ian Turner and Jim Lumby. Matt Tees will attend if he is well enough on the day. They will be in the Trust bar at 1pm before the game and so please come along and see them. You just need a valid match ticket for any stand to gain entry.

General

As Christmas approaches, we are once again having our Xmas draw. The draw is taking place in the Players Bar after the Notts County game on December 22nd. Entry is £1 per number and sheets can found in all the bars, but you can also enter online, and we will allocate the number(s) for you. Here is the link: Xmas Draw.

December also sees the “super draw” for our 100 club and this will take place at half time during the Notts County. The November draw will be during half time of Crawley game on November 17th. We currently have 124 entries per month which we are very grateful for and would like to thank everyone who supports it. Entry is £5per month for each number payable by standing order and if you would like to join you can do so here : 100 club form . We are also introducing the facility to buy one off entry each month via our online shop. Entries need to be received 48hrs before the date of the draw and we will issue the future draw dates each month. The link is here 100 Club one off entry.

Also, with Xmas in mind don’t forget that when you do any internet shopping, if you go through our link we will earn commission but the price you see from the retailer is exactly the same as you see if you go direct. This is the link: easyfundraising internet shopping.

Remember, as well as newsletters we are also publishing our programme notes on our website after the game has taken place. They can be found here: Programme Notes

We also publish the minutes of our meeting on the website here: Meeting Minutes

Finally we held our AGM last week and the copy of the accounts together with the Chairman’s and Treasurer’s reports can be found here: AGM Docs

As ever thanks for your support

UTM

Mariners Trust Board

Posted on

Newsletter 30/10/2018

You may have noticed that we have recently been quite active on Twitter with a couple of polls to gauge opinion on standing and live streaming. This is because we have the chance to feedback opinion to the FSF (Football Supporters Federation) and the EFL on these subjects and we must say it is good to see consultation taking place on subjects like these. Hopefully this will mean that supporter views will be taken into account when decisions are made.

Standing – We have long been advocates of supporters having the choice of standing or sitting and in our view the current regulations are outdated and unnecessary. You may recall a few years ago we pushed strongly for a standing trial at Blundell Park with a view to introducing a standing section. We were very disappointed when the DCMS (Department of culture, media and sport) ruled that in the event of the club gaining promotion back to the EFL any standing facility (even a trial) would have to be either converted back to seating or not used at all. This goes back to the fact that our licence with the EFL is for an all seater stadium which was implemented when we had to convert to all seater in 1995 because we were a Division 1 (now Championship) club. As things stand this can only be changed by a new law. Furthermore, we were informed that in the event of us moving to a new stadium the licence moves with us and therefore would also be all seater. This is clearly illogical and hopefully things will have moved on before that time.

The views of the fans are very clear in that there is sizeable group, maybe as high as a third, who would rather stand than sit. The vast majority of the rest, even though they want to sit, agree that there should be a standing facility. Not many think we should remain all seating.

At last there seems to be will from the authorities for reform in this area and we are very hopeful that change will come sooner rather than later with the introduction of various forms of standing areas at likes of Shrewsbury, Cardiff and Oxford. Let’s hope common sense prevails.

Live Streaming of EFL games – As you may be aware the EFL introduced a facility this season to be able to watch a live stream of midweek games and any Saturday games outside of the 2.24-5.15pm window for a fee of £10. Controversially, it also transpires that the Saturday ruling doesn’t apply for the International break weekends and in those weeks the 3pm ko games can also be shown. These rules are for UK based customers as fans living abroad can already buy an annual season ticket for around £110 which enables viewing of all games.

Like many fans we are very worried about the Saturday “loophole” could well be the start of a move to stream all games live. The obvious worry is that the move to live streaming will result in reduced attendances particularly when away fans have a long journey or when the weather conditions are cold and wet, and it is easier and cheaper to watch from the comfort of your home. For this reason, we decided to do a quick poll and to be honest we were quite surprised by the results and does highlight some potential benefits. The results were as follows:

In total 631 votes which represents a good sample size.

32% think games should never be streamed

26% thought it was ok for midweek but not Saturday

9% thought it was also ok on Saturday provided it is outside of 2.45-5.15pm

33% thought all games should be streamed

 

It was the latter result that was a little surprising and so we asked those who voted that way whether they were local or exile expecting the majority to be exile. Again surprisingly, only 50% were exile and the other 50% local. As we reviewed the comments it is clear that live streaming is a great way for exiles to follow the club and we believe through other work we have done that we have a higher proportion of exile fans than most. We also know as a group they want to be a bigger part of the club and be more involved. From the local fans point of view the key issues were around costs and availability eg child or elderly care duties.

Without ignoring the local element, it would be good if there was a possibility of restricting streaming of home games to outside a certain radius of the Town, but we are not sure that technically that is possible. We already have a situation where people are getting around the rules by using a VPN to access as if abroad. Also, we are aware that some are finding free streams via IPTV and the like. There is then the situation that certain local pubs have been showing game live despite being asked not to.

The finances of this are interesting in that it benefits away clubs as they start to get income that previously would have gone to the home team. From our point of view, we would probably benefit overall because on average we take more fans away than we have visiting us. For example, if 200 fans decide not to go to Mansfield next week and watch on I follow instead the change in finance would be as follows.

Mansfield lose 200 x say £15 = -£3,000 plus a probable reduction in home fans

Town gain 200 x £8 (80% of £10)   = +£1600

The argument from the EFL is that what it does is increase the overall reach and opens up the match for many more fans to watch thereby increasing the popularity of the game overall.

The worry remains that over time more and more fans will join the hordes of other armchair fans and that attendances will fall and the matchday experience will diminish. We are particularly worried that more younger fans will see this as the way to watch football. The challenge for clubs will be to improve the matchday experience to the extent that supporters will continue to go to live games even if they are being streamed.

This is a very important and interesting topic and one we will ensure we are fully involved in with both with the club and the authorities. Hopefully we will soon have some initial information on the levels of subscriptions which we enable us to look more closely at the overall impact.

AGM – Reminder that this year’s AGM takes place in the Trust bar this Wednesday 31st October 2018 starting at 7pm. After the formal meeting we will have an open meeting which gives chance to discuss some of these and other issues. All welcome but only members can take part in the actual AGM.

Finally, the Youth team are at home tonight (30th October) in the FA Youth Cup v Mansfield at Blundell Park ko 7pm. Admission is just £3 for Adults and £1 for concessions. It would be great for these youngsters if there was a good crowd there to support them.

UTM

Mariners Trust Board.

 

 

Posted on

Newsletter 9/10/2018

Newsletter 9/10/2018

Here is our latest newsletter which focuses on the actions we have or are taking on the issues raised in the fans survey. Here is the link to the survey results on our website Survey Results

Although a bit later than we had planned we can now provide an update of our action plan from the survey conducted earlier in the year.

Question 1 asked about Trust Membership. The survey was completed by 657 supporters of which 271 were members of MT and 386 non-members.

Questions 2 & 3 – These were about what does Mariners Trust stand for? 55% thought they knew which meant 45% didn’t know or were unsure. When asked what it should stand for the overwhelming response was that we should be “the voice of the fans”.

We fully take this on board and are endeavouring to incorporate this into everything we do. Also we want to build this into our logo and tag line and so for instance instead of saying as we do now “connecting club and community” we want to say something like “by the fans for the fans” but would welcome further suggestions. The emphasis on fan representation is actually already written into our objectives that form part of our rules (see below) and we will ensure going forward that we continually reference back to these.

Mariners Trust Objectives

The objects are to benefit the community by:

    1. being the democratic and representative voice of the supporters of the Club and strengthening the bonds between the Club and the communities which it serves;
    2. achieving the greatest possible supporter and community influence in the running and ownership of the Club;
    3. promoting responsible and constructive community engagement by present and future members of the communities served by the Club and encouraging the Club to do the same;
    4. operating democratically, fairly, sustainably, transparently and with financial responsibility and encouraging the Club to do the same;
    5. being a positive, inclusive and representative organisation, open and accessible to all supporters of the Club regardless of their age, income, ethnicity, gender, disability, sexuality or religious or moral belief.

Question 4 Asked if you believe MT do a good job. 70% said Yes and 30% said No. This is below where we want it to be and 80%+ is our target. We acknowledge that with such a large variation of opinions with the fan base we will never please everyone but 80% should be achievable. We intend to track this reading on an annual basis.

Questions 5,6 and 7 were about our place on the board. There was a very high understanding that we have a representative on the club board (96%) and a fairly high, but lower, understanding that we pay the club £30k pa. Question 7 then asked if we should pay £30k pa for the board place and a sizable majority of 74% said no. This was the single biggest issue coming out of the survey and one that we have dealt with via the work we have being doing with Supporters Direct (SD) and the club. We will shortly be issuing a memorandum of understanding which will outline our working relationship with the club which will cover this and other issues. This will confirm that our board place is not conditional on fundraising. We do however acknowledge that we will actively fundraise, particularly as a high proportion is via the club bars, but the use of the proceeds will be on agreed projects and clearly communicated each year.

Question 8 asked if the MT should support the changes to the Checkatrade Trophy ahead of the 2018/19 season. In all honesty we think this question was a bit confusing and 58% said No whilst 42% said yes or unsure whereas we were expecting a much higher No vote. Just to be clear our view on the Checkatrade is that the competition is fundamentally flawed and there is no place for premiership teams in EFL competitions. The other concern of fans is that this is just the start and the next step is that “B” teams will be introduced into the EFL league structure, and so we have taken up this issue with the club as part of the work with SD. We are delighted that the club have agreed to incorporate into our agreement that they will NEVER agree to the introduction of premiership representation into the EFL league structure. We think this is a really positive step forward and hopefully allays some of the fears of supporters.

Question 9 was about how can MT communicate better? Results were as follows:

More on social media 49%

More on traditional local media 11%

More regular newsletters 10%

More regular e-mails 14%

Others 16%

Much of this is also covered below in Q10 in the section about better communication. The “others” element mainly relates to making better use of notices around the ground and also verbal communication such as open meetings etc. We would also remind everyone that we are available at every home game and pleased to answer any questions and we are also always well represented at away games where the same applies.

Question 10 This section asked for 3 things we should do this year. Given this gave 1800 + different suggestions it was by far the most difficult section to analysis and in hindsight should have been more targeted. There were however some key issues from this which can be summarised as follows:

  1. a) The single biggest category related to things directly outside of our control and in particularly many related to the future of then manager Russell Slade. These accounted for 12% of possible comments and 36% of respondents. Although outside of our direct control rest assured those views were fully represented at the board.

In terms of the things that we can influence these were the main issues raised:

  1. b) Improve matchday experience (11.5% of comments) These replies covered both home and away games as well as a variety of topics such as catering, bars, pre-match and half-time entertainment, ticketing and events for Juniors. This is something we want to do drill down a bit further on and get to a priority action plan. This section also included comments from exiles about wanting more recognition from the club and this is something we have been pursuing but have not yet reached a conclusion. We will continue to work on this and seek further views from exiles.
  2. c) Communicate better with fans (11%) – This has been a priority for us and something we know has been a weakness. We have had an ongoing struggle with e-mailing which we have now solved, and you will have noticed that we are now back up and running. Also, we have not been making full use of social media but again hopefully you will have noticed that we have been much more active over the last couple of months. We also want to be more informative which is why we have introduced regular newsletters such as this which gives us the chance to communicate in much more detail efficiently and economically.
  3. d) Retain and use seat on board to be more vocal (11%) – This comes back to communication and us being more informative about issues debated at board meetings but obviously within the bounds of confidentiality. This will be a regular part of our newsletters.
  4. e) Lead fan owned model (8%) – We have been very clear on this from the start in that the current Trust board do not believe this is the best course of action at this time nor is it practical. This survey suggests that there isn’t really a huge appetite for it but if this has changed and there are individuals willing to step forward to pursue this then we will not get in the way. We agree that change is needed, and our preferred scenario is that we help the club find new investors in line with their stated aim. As we understand it there has been some interest but nothing to report and the search goes on.
  5. f) Stop paying 30K for board place (6.5%) – As already reported we have reached a new agreement which accepts that we will commit to actively fundraise, bearing in mind a very large part of our income comes from the bars, but importantly our board place does not depend on it. Also, the use of the funds we raise will be spent on pre-agreed projects and clearly communicated.
  6. g) Improve relations between club and fans (6.5%) – Again this comes back to communication not just from ourselves but also from the club. We are working hard to bring forward joint initiatives, a good example of which is the 140year celebration and offers, and we will continue to look at ways of making the fans feel more part of the club.
  7. h) Change the GTFC board (4%) – Obviously we are not in direct control of this and our view is as outlined above
  8. i) Stability on Trust board (4%) – This has been a problem in the past but we not had any significant changes for six months now and believe we are now starting to see the benefit. Inevitably there will always be change due to the nature of volunteer roles, but we feel we can do better in terms of succession planning in particular for the “officer” roles. As always, we could do with more resource of the right calibre to help lead and shape what we do.
  9. j) Increase membership (4%) – To be honest this has not been a priority as we haven’t felt justified in pushing hard on membership whilst we have been doing the work with SD. Also, frankly, the membership system has been a mess and we have had to spend a lot of time getting it sorted so that we can move forward. This has now been sorted and the good news also is a volunteer has come forward to give us dedicated resource which will be huge benefit. Ultimately members will make their own decisions regarding continuation of membership and we need to make sure that our actions encourage them to continue as well as attract new and lapsed members.
  10. k) Step down from GTFC board (3.5%) – Some have a view that we would be better not sitting on the board and tackling the club from the outside, although this particular survey does not suggest this is a widespread view. This is not a view we share, and we strongly feel that we are much better off being party to all of the decisions even if ultimately some arguments are not won. We do not believe that there is anything that would be said from outside of the board that cannot be said from inside. There are not many clubs in the EFL who have supporter representation on their board and other clubs would dearly love to be in our position. At some point there will be ownership change at the club and hopefully progress on the new stadium and we think it is really important we are fully involved in these types of issues. If we were to come off the board but then further down the line decide we would want to go back on there would be no guarantee of acceptance, it is not something we can just dip in and out of as we please.
  11. l) Others (8%) This was a whole range of different comments and suggestions which were either not practical or not viewed as a priority. As we mentioned earlier getting 1800 different ideas and opinions gave us a real challenge and our plan is now to consolidate down to a sensible list of list of actions and consult on prioritisation.

Question 11 The final question asked for an overall rating from 1 (excellent) to 5 (poor) with the average score coming out at 2.8 which slightly above average bit is not at the level we would like to be at. We will use this as a benchmark against future readings and hopefully show improvement.

Consulting and communicating with fans is a key part of what we need to do to improve and gain the confidence of members and indeed the wider fan base. We know that this has been a weakness for us but hopefully you will agree that we are getting better and we will continue to focus on communication as a key area to keep improving. You told us we need to be better and we are listening and taking action.

Our ability to improve and the speed of improvement very much depends on resource and as we have previously stated we would very much like to hear from anyone who is willing to help particularly in the area of website content/design and social media. Technology is ever evolving and we people with the right skills to help us so that we can take full advantage.

Hopefully you have found this interesting and if you have any further questions or comments please do not hesitate to contact us by e-mailing enquiries@marinerstrust.co.uk. This is our preferred method of communication and we guarantee that you will get a swift reply. We do monitor social media and forums but won’t necessarily see everything and cannot guarantee replying.

Keep the faith

Mariners Trust Board

 

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AGM Notification

The Annual General Meeting of the Grimsby Town Supporters’ Society (The Mariners Trust) will take place on Wednesday 31st.October 2018 starting at 7 p.m. in the Main Mariners Trust Bar located underneath the Findus Stand at Blundell Park. Access to the venue will be via the car park door.

AGENDA

1) Chairman’s Report

2) Treasurer’s Report

3) Appointment of Independent examiner

4) Election of board members

End of formal meeting

As always the Trust Board are looking for people who are prepared to donate time, knowledge and skills to assist in moving The Mariners Trust forward. If anyone is interested applications by e-mail to enquiries@marinerstrust.co.uk by midnight on Thursday 18th. October 2018.

The Mariners Trust Board

Posted on

Newsletter 17/9/2018

In our newsletter of 31/8/2018 we committed to regular updates and so here is what has been happening since.

Stadium

One of the hot topics amongst fans over the last couple of weeks has been the potential for Freeman Street to be the location for the new stadium.

The first point to make is that our general stance on the new stadium has always been and still is that we are very much behind the principal of moving as long it provides the improved operational finances we need to be more competitive on a sustainable basis

After the frustration of the failed Great Coates project it is our understanding that the council highlighted Peaks Parkway (PP) as a potential alternative site and on the club’s own assessment this became their preference. As part of the feasibility the council quite rightly wanted to do their own assessment and as a result they commissioned and paid for two reports. First of all, they wanted to understand the social and economic benefit of actually having a new community stadium in the Town. This was very positive and so the next assessment was on the basis that it is the right thing to do then where should it be? This assessment was based on a number of factors such as site availability, condition, size, location, public transport, highways access, walking catchment etc. The conclusion of the study was that PP was the most suitable site and at that time Freeman St didn’t even make the shortlist based on size, complexity of ownership and timescale. Some have argued that the study was skewed towards PP based on the size criteria and that the stadium and enabling can be separate, but we do not entirely agree with that view. The facilities such as hotel, conference, restaurants, sports and education etc together with the sport and leisure facilities planned by Extreme would need to be part of the stadium site. Housing could potentially be elsewhere depending on land availability, ownership etc. This leaves the community/training pitches which ideally would be on the same site, and that was the assumption the criteria, but we agree they could potentially be separate and if that was the case as a suggestion we think Kings George/Clee Fields would be a good site and should be explored.

The situation as we understand it now is that the council have recently suggested to the club that Freeman St should be reviewed again on the back of regeneration. This is obviously at a very early stage and it would seem sensible to us that while that work is being undertaken the PP project is still there as an option. Also, it appears to us that this fundamentally changes the project from something that was a football club led project with council support to something that now has to be led and delivered by the council. We don’t particularly have a problem with that and would welcome the council’s commitment.

As we have already said we absolutely support the need for a new community stadium, but we are very open-minded regarding location. We have always backed PP because as far as we can see that is the best site where a club led project could be delivered and we still believe it is a good site, although we do appreciate fans views on that are mixed. We have always thought that if the fans had something more tangible to look at in terms of a worked up model or similar then it would get more support and understanding. The Freeman St idea could be very exciting but as we have already said it is very early days and there are a whole range of questions that need answering particularly in relation to financing.

We really need asap a public statement from the council and club to confirm where we are at with project and realistic time frames. We will be pushing for this as a matter of urgency.

The other thing that needs consideration further down the line is that if the Freeman St site proves not to be viable and there continues to be no political will for PP then at what point do you just draw a line under it and accept we will be at Blundell Park for the long term. We cannot go on forever with the uncertainty of re-location

One thing seems certain and that is we will still be at Blundell Park for some time to come and that raises concerns about upkeep/improvement projects and the cost thereof. We know there are major works needed on the floodlights as well as a big list of other things such as toilets and disabled facilities. The costs and potential funding assistance for these are currently being assessed.

Work with SD and the club

As we have previously reported we have been working with Supporters Direct (SD) and the club to look at how we work together. The output of this will be a memorandum of understanding (MOU) which will be a public document available on both the Trust and Club’s website. This was discussed at last week’s club board meeting and the final document is now being put together. Obviously, the document will contain the detail but what we can say is that within MOU agreement our board place is not conditional. As the majority of our income comes from the bars it is only right that we commit to supporting the club but this will be used on agreed projects and communicated to the fans accordingly. The agreement will also cover protection on what we would call red line issues such as club badge, name, strip, stadium use and “B” teams participation in the league structure. On both our parts there is a commitment to improved communication and engagement. We think this is a positive step forward and hopefully when you see the full document you will agree.

140 yr Exhibition

Thanks to those who came down to the 140yr exhibition yesterday and we know from the positive feedback that those who came really enjoyed it. We acknowledge that it was put on at short notice, and publicity could have been better, so we have decided to do it again a week on Thursday (27th) from 5pm to 9pm. We may be more restricted in terms of access to boardroom etc depending on what we can agree but there will still be plenty to look at. We are going to try and get some players along as well.

A reminder that the celebrations continue at the Wellington Arms this Thursday (20th September). The pub will have an open buffet all day and will doing fundraising for the YDA which they have already started with a kind donation of £150. They have lots of memorabilia on show and Michael Jolley and some of the players will be there at 6pm.

AGM

A formal notice will be issued but the date for our AGM will be Wednesday 24th October. As ever we are always looking for people with the time and enthusiasm to get involved either as a full board member or as a willing helper. We are particularly in need of help in the following area.

Communication – Website, social media, e-mailing etc.

Membership – Administration role to deal with new memberships and renewals

These wouldn’t need to be board roles (but could be)

We also need individuals with the ability to pick and run with projects and see them through. In addition, as think about succession planning for the officer roles and board representative we need individuals with the right leadership and business skills. If you fancy getting involved but would like to know more then, please just contact us at enquiries@marinerstrust.co.uk.

UTM

Mariners Trust Board

Posted on

Newsletter 31/8/2018

Racist incident at Newport

It was really sad this week to learn of an alleged incident at Newport of a Grimsby Supporter shouting a racist remark at a Newport player.

Our stance on this is that any form of abuse including racism has no place at a football ground or anywhere else in society and cannot be tolerated. There can be no mitigating circumstances and if found to be true we would support a lengthy ban and a suitable re-education programme be undertaken. We would be pleased to facilitate the re-education and indeed a wider programme if it helps eradicate this awful behaviour.

Also, as we understand it the issue was highlighted by another Grimsby supporter which can’t have been easy but, in our view, should be applauded.

Unfortunately, we have also been told of an alleged racist incident at the Lincoln game but so far, the person involved has not been identified. This was reported as happening in the Lower Youngs a few minutes after the Lincoln goal and we would encourage anyone who has any information on this to contact ourselves or the club.

Although we advocate strong action we would much rather prevent this and all forms of abuse.We very much support the work of Kick it Out and would encourage everyone to find out more by visiting www.kickitout.org or download the kick it out app. They and the FSF offer lots of help and we intend to work closely with the club to ensure these are fully utilised all year round within the community. Getting the message over to kids and young adults has to be the priority if we are going to stop these incidents once and for all.

140 year Celebrations

On a more positive note we are putting together a mini exhibition to celebrate the 140 yr anniversary of the club. This will take place on Sunday September 16th at Blundell Park. Entry will be free and doors open at 10.30 until 2pm. The format will be:

Programme and Book corner

Story Boards showing  the history of the club 1878-present day in words and pictures

Fantastic memorabilia on show

“Corridor of shirts”

Access to Boardroom and Kingswood lounge

10 minute video on loop

Variety of replica shirts for sale

Hot and cold drinks available

In addition to this we are working with the Wellington Arms to put on a special day on the actual day of the anniversary which is Thursday September 20th. It is at this very venue that the club was formed all those years ago. The pub will be putting on a free buffet throughout the day and there will be lots of memorabilia on display. GTFC manager and some players will be attendance around 6pm and there will be lots of fundraising taking place for the YDA and the pub have kindly kicked this off with a donation of £150.

Please support these events if you can, the history of our great club is incredible.

Guest of Honour

Hopefully you will have noticed that we are trying to get an ex player back as our special guest for each game. So far we have had Justin Whittle and Phil Hubbard and tomorrow we are pleased to welcome back Steve Sherwood. For the Oldham game we have Shaun Cunnington and then also confirmed we have Mike Hickman for the Crawley game. This is Mike’s first visit back having emigrated to Australia and so we are also getting back together as many of the 1971/72 team as possible. More details to follow nearer the time.

When you see the ex players as we take them round the ground please do not hesitate to speak to them, have a photo or whatever, they really appreciate it.

Transfer to stands from Trust Bar

We have been made aware of issues at the last game when people who have  entered the ground early to use the Trust bar have had problems transferring to other stands despite having tickets. We have raised this with the club and it is clearly a misunderstanding by the stewards and will be highlighted in the briefing notes for tomorrow. We would encourage any season ticket holders who are needing to transfer to bring their books with them so that they can prove to the stewards they have a valid ticket.

On the subject of the bars just to clarify they will be open for a short time prior to half time but live screening of the game is not allowed under new licencing restrictions imposed this year. As you can imagine we are not happy with this and are trying to get a sensible solution. We reluctantly accept that the game cannot be shown for the whole of the game but feel to stop it all together is a sledgehammer to crack a nut solution and it makes absolute sense to relieve congestion in the bars at half time by having the game live on the TV’s in the 10 mins so prior.

Work with SD

As you know we have been working with Supporter Direct on how we can improve our ways of working with the club building in the key points from the fans survey from early this year. The status on this is that we have had a very positive meeting with SD and the club and we will be in a position to issue details in a couple of weeks time after the next GTFC board meeting. The process has taken longer than we would have liked but we wanted SD’s involvement so that they could bring to the table their knowledge and experience of other clubs and indeed this has been invaluable to us. They have been going through major change themselves with their amalgamation with the FSF and understandably that has restricted their availability.

Programme Notes

We have a feature in every programme when we take the opportunity to update on any news as well as discuss any current football topics. We appreciate not everyone wants to buy a programme and so after games we are going to be publishing our articles on this website. The link is here http://www.marinerstrust.co.uk/newsletters/news/

Enjoy the match tomorrow

UTM

Mariners Trust Board