This Saturday, 10th March, marks the 113th anniversary of the founding of Chelsea Football Club. To mark the occasion, Chelsea Supporters Trust has organised a guided tour of Chelsea F.C. related graves with club historian Rick Glanvill, followed by wreath laying at the Mears family memorial.
The tour is open to all Chelsea Supporters Trust members. If you’re not already a member, please take a look at our Membership page to find our more about which levels of memberships are available or sign up on the day. If you’d like to attend, please meet at the Visitors Centre at 12.15pm (this is located near the West Brompton station end of the cemetery).
If you’re not able to join us on Saturday, you can download your own walking guide of the Chelsea F.C. related graved located in Brompton Cemetery from the Official Website. Chelsea Supporters Trust also organises regular visits to the cemetery to maintain the Chelsea graves – information about when these take place are posted on Twitter and Facebook, so make sure you follow us if you’re interested!
Supporter representatives from every top-flight club met with Premier League executives recently to discuss a range of issues – including TV impact on the fixture schedule.
The meeting was attended by Premier League Chief Executive Richard Scudamore and other league officials.
Tim Rolls was the Chelsea Supporters Trust representative and he was joined by supporter representatives from every Premier League club drawn from the network of democratically structured supporter trusts.
This was the third meeting between fan organisations and the Premier League which followed Government recommendations on fan engagement. The first took place in July 2016.
Future meetings will take place on a bi-annual basis with the next one due to take place in March 2018.
The Premier League will also be producing its own notes from the meeting – these will be published shortly.
In an historic achievement, Shrewsbury Town Football Club are one step closer to being the first club in England & Wales to introduce safe standing at their Montgomery Waters Meadow stadium, following the successful completion of their crowdfunding campaign thanks to a considerable contribution from FansBet.
FansBet, whose ambassador is former England goalkeeper Paul Robinson, said of their contribution to the campaign “We know exactly how important the issue of safe standing is to fans in helping generate the correct environment to enjoy watching football for supporters young and old.”
The campaign, spearheaded by the Shrewsbury Town Supporters’ Parliament in partnership with the Club and sports fanfunding specialists Tifosy, raised more than £65,000 through contributions from almost 1,000 fanfunders.
Reflective of the national demand for safe standing, the crowdfunding campaign drew in support from fans and supporters’ groups up and down the country, transcending traditional club loyalties.
Speaking of the achievement, Roger Groves of the Shrewsbury Town Supporters’ Parliament said “This is a remarkable achievement by the hundreds of fans and sponsors, especially FansBet, who have paved the way for the thousands more to bring standing back to matchdays at their clubs. I am very proud that Shrewsbury Town has been at the heart of this”.
Brian Caldwell, Shrewsbury Town CEO, added “We are delighted that Shrewsbury Town will be the flagship club in addressing this issue, which is so important to so many fans. We will now continue the process to introduce rail seating in the Salop Leisure Stand at the Montgomery Waters Meadow, and we hope to have supporters watching home games from the safe standing area before the end of the season”.
Safe standing has been something that fans nationwide have campaigned to see introduced for many years, as government policy currently prohibits many clubs from offering supporters the chance to stand. As one of the few clubs with an all-seater ground able to introduce a rail seating section, Shrewsbury Town will now lead the way in making the case for a change in policy and adding a standing option to the matchday experience for all clubs and fans.
The next CST Special General Meeting will be held on Saturday 21st October at 15:30 pm (after the Chelsea v Watford match) at The Atlas Pub (upstairs) 16 Seagrave Road London SW6 1RX
With Special Guest Pat Nevin
Uppermost in Chelsea Supporters minds at the moment is the issue of Kick-Off times and their re-scheduling for TV. We will be covering this and other subjects in the meeting. In addition, Charles Rose, Chairman, Chelsea Pitch Owners will be speaking to provide us on an update of the CPO’s recent activities. Other issues such as Atmosphere, Affiliations, Safe Standing and Community will be covered in the meeting. You will also have the chance to ask questions on any pertinent matter and get your points across to the board. The formal notice of the meeting and the agenda can be found below.
Q & A with Pat Nevin
The CST board are pleased to advise members that the SGM will feature a Question and Answer session with former Chelsea player Pat Nevin. Pat will be answering questions from the floor on his career with Chelsea and giving us his thoughts on the current side and modern football.
The venue for the SGM is the upstairs Bar of The Atlas Pub in Seagrave Road, 15 minutes’ walk from Stamford Bridge and close to West Brompton underground station. Attendance at the meeting is open to paid up voting members of the Trust only. Membership to the CST costs £5 per year and includes a free pin badge. You can sign up easily from our website and we accept payment by credit or debit card or via PayPal. We hope as many of you as possible will attend in person but as there is limited space available, to avoid disappointment, please confirm that you will be attending by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
Unable to Attend?
With thanks to the Chelsea FanCast, overseas members or those unable to attend in person will be able to listen to the meeting live and interact online at www.mixlr.com/chelsea-fancast. Minutes and a podcast of the SGM will be available following the meeting.
Special General Meeting
Saturday 21st October at 15:30 pm
- Chairman’s Report
- Updates on progress and actions regarding motions passed at AGM (Working Group Reports): –
- Supporter Issues (Cliff Auger/Tim Rolls)
- Annual Survey (Ramzi Shammas)
- Community (Cliff Auger)
- Safe Standing (Henry Fowler)
- Charles Rose, Chairman, Chelsea Pitch Owners
- Update on CPO activity
- Any Other Business
- Pat Nevin Q&A
Pat Nevin, one of Chelsea’s most loved former players, who graced the Stamford Bridge pitch with his style and flair in the 1980’s, is our special guest. Pat is now a respected and insightful football pundit working predominantly with BBC Radio 5 Live and many Chelsea supporters will have read his erudite blogs in ChelseaFC.com. Pat will be answering questions from the floor on his career with Chelsea and giving us his thoughts on the current side and modern football.
It is anticipated that the formal meeting (including the Q&A) will end by 17.30 at the latest.
Overseas members or those unable to attend in person will be able to listen to the meeting and interact live online via www.mixlr.com/chelsea-fancast
Chelsea Supporters’ Trust
Making your voice heard
The Chelsea Supporters’ Trust Autumn Newsletter is now available.
It covers the recent Annual General Meeting and election results; the date of the next Special General Meeting; a report on the latest supporter issues and the unveiling of the Jack Whitley Memorial.
You can download the newsletter here:
The results of the Chelsea Supporters’ Trust Annual Survey are now available and can be downloaded here.
We’d like to thank all of you who participated in the survey held in May/June this year. It is arguably one of the most important activities the Trust is involved with on your behalf. It is an important barometer of our concerns, issues and views on the Club and in addition the results feed in to the motions you vote on at the AGM which in turn become CST policy for the year ahead.
We will be meeting with the Club to discuss the survey results in detail and any concerns and issues arising in November.
The key points and highlights are as follows:
- The response rate has increased due to our decision to open the survey up to all Chelsea supporters.
- On-pitch success; Stamford Bridge redevelopment; ticket pricing and ticket access are considered the most important issues for supporters.
- Satisfaction with the Club Administration has improved and returned to 2015 levels (highest since the survey was started).
- Concern was expressed about the additional time, cost and inconvenience in attending matches at whichever temporary stadium is chosen during the redevelopment. In addition, creating a good atmosphere is seen as paramount.
- Safe Standing continues to receive wholehearted backing with the hope that the redeveloped stadium will be able to accommodate sections with rail seating.
- There is frustration with away ticket availability and the Loyalty Point system, although the £30 cap on away tickets has been welcomed and in part has led to an increase in demand.
- The change in kick-off times due to TV re-scheduling has become an issue of great irritation for supporters.
- Overseas supporters in particular have expressed their frustration in obtaining enough loyalty points to attend matches later in the season and also suffer more than UK based supporters with changes in kick-off times.
Once again thanks for your support.
Football supporters know all too well the impact that changes to the fixture schedule have. Often plans are rearranged and expense incurred when a match is moved to accommodate cup football or for TV scheduling. We have very little, if any say, despite being the most put upon stakeholders in the game. Representatives from the Premier League Fans Group have recently started to meet with Sky Sports and BT Sport to put forward supporter views on these changes and to look at ways we can mitigate this impact.
However the news that has broken this week, that Sky plan to fill their ‘Super Sunday’ TV slots, despite this falling on Christmas Eve, is hugely disappointing and frustrating for supporters. Whilst the discussion has been dominated by the likelihood of an Arsenal v Liverpool fixture on 24th December, choices have not yet been finalised and any club is still available to be chosen for a televised game.
This is wrong and no fixtures should be scheduled for that day. Supporters would be faced with the unenviable task of deciding between family, friends and loved ones and any pre-existing plans for that time of year or continuing their loyalty and support for their club.
Club staff would also face similar difficulties. Public transport shuts down early on Christmas Eve and travel may be at a greater expense. Made to work, their plans and priorities are challenged in pursuit of a TV programme. These staff aren’t the well paid millionaires, but the catering, hospitality, stewarding and security personnel required to fulfil a fixture. This extends further to police, local authority and others who will have to work to facilitate such a change.
None of these, like supporters, share in the Premier League riches or have Premier League style lifestyles and wages. This would be more take, with little given back.
This must not be allowed to happen, not this season and not in future seasons. We are more than willing to work with the broadcasters and the league to avoid such pitfalls for the benefit of all. After all, we don’t want this to be the ghost of Christmas future.
Now though, the decision makers must show this is indeed the season of goodwill after all. Sky, the Premier League and the clubs have to recognise that whilst there is a TV slot available, football on Christmas Eve is unacceptable and is a step too far.
Supporters should clearly be included within any decision-making process in relation to such drastic changes and this is not something that is being taken lightly. We have already successfully campaigned for cheaper away tickets and will continue our work to ensure that match-going fans are treated as fairly as possible.
Spirit Of Shankly, Liverpool Supporters’ Trust
Spion Kop 1906
Arsenal Supporters Trust
Chelsea Supporters Trust
Manchester United Supporters Trust
Tottenham Hotspur Supporters Trust
Black Scarf Movement
Watford Supporters Trust
Burnley FC Supporters Groups
Newcastle United Supporters Trust
Huddersfield Town Supporters Association
Stand Up For Town
Stoke City Supporters Council
West Ham United Independent Supporters’ Association
On Saturday 30 September a short service will take place to mark the placing of a memorial stone on the grave of Jack Whitley at Brompton Cemetery. The grave for Whitley, who died in 1955, was previously unmarked and funding for the stone was raised by a crowdfunding campaign organised by the Chelsea Supporters Trust.
Before the unveiling ceremony, there will be a guided tour of Chelsea related graves at 11.00 am held by Chelsea Historian Rick Glanvill. If you want to go on the tour meet at the North Entrance to the Cemetery (nearest to West Brompton tube).
The ceremony to unveil the memorial and inscription will be held at at 12.00 pm at the grave. Everyone is welcome to attend both the tour and ceremony.
Jack Whitley’s grave can be found at the north-east corner of Brompton Cemetery and is a 5 minute walk from West Brompton station. The 74 and 430 bus’ stop just outside of the cemetery entrance.
Thanks to the remarkable generosity of Chelsea supporters – and those of other clubs, including Everton and Manchester United – the target of £5,500 was raised within weeks.
Descendants of Jack were traced and several family members will be present at the service, as well as the match later that day against Manchester City, the special guests of Chelsea FC.
For almost half of his life Jack was a wonderful servant of Chelsea FC. He signed as a goalkeeper from Lincoln in 1907 and kept a clean sheet on his debut against Newcastle United 110 years ago this month – the new club’s first win in the top flight.
After retiring as a player in 1914 he became “Mr Chelsea”: the first team trainer, responsible for all areas of coaching and fitness, with a big role in player liaison and transfer negotiations. He was also trainer of the England team on several occasions – the de facto manager of the national side.
After 32 years at the Bridge, new manager Willie Birrell decided to freshen up the back room staff and Jack was let go in 1939. He eventually moved to Hertfordshire, where he was to die in 1955 – a few months after his beloved Blues won the league championship for the first time. Having committed so much of his life to the Stamford Bridge club it was fitting that he should be buried just across the tracks from the stadium – a fact that only came to light recently as a result of new research by official Chelsea historian Rick Glanvill.
Jack has earned a unique distinction in Chelsea history. Not only did he serve the club for more than three decades, but he is the only known footballer to be buried at Brompton Cemetery.
The Royal Parks green-space, adjacent to Stamford Bridge, is also the final resting place of former directors, supporters, a chairman, and a manager of the club. All the graves there are tended by the Chelsea Supporters’ Trust’s cemetery clean-up group, run by Cliff Auger, and the Trust has overseen the process of placing a stone on the Whitley grave in conjunction with Glanvill.
Chelsea Supporters Trust Chairman, David Chidgey said: “We are proud to be associated with the campaign to provide a fitting memorial to Jack Whitley, a loyal servant of Chelsea FC. Furthermore we are very grateful for the generosity of Chelsea supporters who donated to the campaign so readily. It proves unquestionably that the bond between supporters and players remains as strong as ever.”
We would like to thank all those who kindly donated money towards the fund, whatever the amount, and express our gratitude to Milestone Memorials, Royal Parks, the Friends of Brompton Cemetery, and Chelsea FC, for helping to make this happen.
Click here for a breakdown of how the £5,500 was spent.
The results of the recent Chelsea Supporters Trust Board election and the voting on each CST Motion, as proposed in the AGM of 13th August have now been released.
The vote for the new Board was an ‘affirmative vote’ with 9 members standing for election or re-election. Each member required 50% of the vote to be elected.
We are delighted that each member standing received well over 90% of the votes cast and the following have been duly elected: Cliff Auger; David Chidgey; Henry Fowler; Charles Jackson; David Johnstone; Chris Rayburn; Ramzi Shammas; Dan Silver; Richard Weekes.
We trust the membership will extend a warm welcome to new Board members Henry Fowler and Ramzi Shammas and to the returning Board members as well.
The first meeting of the new Board will be held on Thursday September 14th where we will elect the positions of Chairman and Treasurer, Paul Jeffrey will remain in position as Secretary.
In addition, we have now received the results of the voting for the Motions from the Board.
In short these are as follows (votes in favour in brackets):
- Approval of 2016/17 accounts (98.48 %);
- CST Affiliations (100 %);
- Stamford Bridge Redevelopment (99.24 %);
- Future of Chelsea Pitch Owners (99.24 %);
- Temporary Stadium (100 %);
- Atmosphere Concerns and Safe Standing (98.48 %);
- Ticket Pricing and Availability (100 %);
- Kick-Off Times (100 %);
- Membership of Safety Advisory Group (99.22 %);
- Ticket Touting (96.92 %);
- Stakeholder Engagement (100 %);
- Football in the Community (100 %);
- Club Heritage (100 %);
- Supporters Club Ticket Allocations (94.57 %).
Full details of the Motions can be found here
As you can see every Motion proposed by the Board has been backed positively and bar a percentage point or two unanimously!
This gives the new Board a very strong mandate from the membership going forward on the supporter issues that affect them most.
To all of our members who took part in the AGM, the election of the Board and for voting on the Motions, many thanks. This democratic process is exactly what sets the Chelsea Supporters Trust apart in that we are answerable to the membership and we work on the issues mandated by the membership.