Walsall Football Club Supporters Working Party Meeting Held in the Executive Box 5 at the Banks’s Stadium, Monday 2nd March 2020 15:00
Present: Stefan Gamble (SG) – Walsall Football Club
Bob Thomas (BT) - Walsall Football Club Supporters Trust
Ian Buckingham (IB) - Walsall Football Club Disabled Supporters Association
Chris Saunders (CS) - Walsall Supporters for Change
Apologies: Daniel Mole (DM) – Walsall Football Club
Graham Whittaker (GW) - Walsall Football Club Supporter Liaison Officer
Minutes: Nick Adshead (NA)
SG starting the meeting by thanking everyone for attending.
2. Matters arising from last meeting
SG advised that the Club will now push the 40-year reunion from a Marketing point of view and asked if the Supporters Trust can provide the Club with the relevant information to do this.
SG advised that Dave Gollins has left the Club and a replacement point of contact for Disabled Supporters on matchday is being sourced and will be confirmed in due course.
3. Update from Walsall Supporters Trust
BT advised that Bob Sadler will be counting the Player of the Season and Young Player of the
Season votes and confirming the winners to the Club. BT advised that discussions are ongoing with ISSA to deal with the grievances raised and the Trust have a meeting on 16th March to discuss further.
BT enquired about the End of Season Dinner which SG confirmed is on Tuesday 21st April. BT enquired as to how Season Ticket sales have been going. SG said it has been an encouraging start to sales. SG also advised that the Club have two ticket offers which will be announced for remaining home games starting with the Oldham Athletic fixture which is “Bring a friend for £5”.
BT also enquired as to when the “Break Clause” in the Freehold was. SG confirmed there were 8 years until the break clause.
4. Update from Walsall FC Disabled Supporters Association
IB updated the membership figures for the DSA which stands at 85 full members with 85 followers on Twitter and 83 on Facebook.
IB gave SG a sample of the “Sunflower Lanyard” and “Membership Card” to pass to Laura Greenhouse (LG). The DSA will be responsible for the distribution of the “Sunflower Lanyards” and will liaise with LG regarding training for the Stewards.
IB will be sending information for the PA Script for the Level Playing Field Week of Action to LG this week.
IB referred to the Ponchos and said that he will obtain costs to purchase replacements and advise the Club.
IB enquired about the “Dementia Café”. SG responded to say that this is an initiative of the Club’s Community Programme and will be held once a month. IB asked where initiatives are arranged by the Community Programme involving persons with disabilities that WFCCP liaises with the DSA.
CS advised that he would be able to provide cake for the Dementia Café via his business.
5. Update from Independent Saddlers Supporters Association (ISSA)
SG advised the meeting that ISSA had notified the Club of their intention to no longer attend Working Party meetings due to ongoing issues they were experiencing with certain members of the Trust.
IB advised that ISSA had asked him to raise a couple of points at the meeting, one regarding the freehold and the cost to purchase it and one regarding the Club’s intentions of staying at the Banks’s Stadium.
SG thanked IB for raising the points but advised he could only address issues and answer questions from Supporter Group and their Representatives who attended the Working Party Meetings.
6. Update from Walsall Supporters for Change (WSFC)
CS asked whether soft drinks could be served at the pop-up bars. SG said he would look into
CS asked whether it’s possible to order online with postage abroad. SG said that this should be able to happen. NA will take it up with the Club Shop.
CS asked who the Finance Provider is for Season Ticket purchases. SG advised that it changed last season to V12 Finance.
CS enquired as to the advertising for the Early Bird Season Tickets and how much has been done. SG advised that there has been full page spread in both the Express & Star and Chronicle. Online advertising throughout the campaign so far plus an E-Shot.
Existing Season Ticket holders and supporters who had purchased tickets throughout the last two seasons were written to personally. There is a video piece going out tomorrow from the Chairman. Leaflet drops will also be done and the Community Programme will also be going into schools.
CS asked if the Club record information on new Season Ticket holders. SG responded to say they do.
CS asked what initiatives are in place for the Casual Fan and whether they will be done and whether things can be done for Away Tickets? SG answered to say we have done in the past and will look at once the season is underway but will act so it doesn’t devalue the Season Tickets. Away Season Tickets is something the Club can look into.
7. Club Update
SG advised the Early Bird campaign “Strength in Numbers” has started well.
SG advised Rory Gaffney was recalled by Salford City to allow him to move to Shamrock
Rovers. Only players who are unattached can now be signed by the Club during a closed window period.
SG advised a number of key senior players are on contract for next season.
8. Any Other Business
DATE FOR NEXT MEETING MONDAY 6th APRIL 2020 AT 15:00.
The meeting closed at 15.57.