All posts by David Chidgey

Annual General Meeting 2018

 Chelsea Supporters Trust logo

ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING 2018

Notice is hereby given that the Annual General Meeting of the Chelsea Supporters Trust will be held at 14:00 on Sunday 19th August 2018 in the Hollins Suite, Millennium Reception, West Stand, Stamford Bridge, Fulham Road, London, SW6 1HS.

All members are welcome to attend the AGM but we must have confirmation that you will be attending no later than 10.00 pm on Thursday 16th August as Chelsea FC require us to provide a list of attendees for security. If you turn up without having confirmed your intention to attend by the time above you will not be admitted to the meeting.

To attend the AGM Members need to have paid their annual membership subscription. If you are unsure whether you are paid up or think that your membership has lapsed please check by emailing membership@chelseasupporterstrust.com

Light refreshments will be provided.

Directions to the Hollins Suite can be downloaded here.

The agenda is reproduced below and can also be downloaded here.

The standing orders for the AGM can be downloaded here.

Candidate manifestos are available to download here.

The draft accounts and annual report will be circulated to members by email in advance of the meeting.

Chelsea Supporters Trust logo

Chelsea Supporters Trust 2018 AGM

Registered office 11, St. Catherine’s Road, Winchester, Hampshire SO23 0PP

Registered with the FSA: 31940R

Notice is hereby given that the Annual General Meeting of the Chelsea Supporters Trust will be held at 14:00 on Sunday 19th of August 2018 at the Hollins Suite, West Stand, Stamford Bridge, Fulham Road, London, SW6 1HS.

AGENDA (please see accompanying notes for further information)

        1. Welcome and apologies
        2. Chairman’s Report – overall report on Trust issues and accounts (to be circulated, with accounts, to members by email in advance of the meeting)
        3. Secretary’s Report
        4. 2018 Annual Survey – summary of results
        5. Board Elections
        6. Motions from the CST Board
          6.1 Board Elections
          6.2 Approval of 2017/18 Accounts and Use of Independent Examiner
          6.3 Chelsea Supporters Trust affiliations
          6.4 The Future of Stamford Bridge
          6.5 The Future of Chelsea Pitch Owners
          6.6 Safe Standing
          6.7 Atmosphere Concerns
          6.8 Ticket Pricing and Availability
          6.9 Fixture Scheduling
          6.10 Membership of Safety Advisory Group
          6.11 Ticket Touting
          6.12 Stakeholder Engagement
          6.13 Football in the Community
          6.14 Club Heritage
          6.15 Supporters Club Ticket Allocations
        7. 6.16 Supporter Liaison Office
        8. 6.17 Supporter Safety
        9. Any Other Business
        10. Close 

By order of the CST board Paul Jeffrey, Secretary 

ACCOMPANYING NOTES TO THE AGENDA

Voting

No voting will take place at the AGM itself. Instead, voting for both the board elections and motions raised at the AGM will take place in the two weeks following the conclusion of the AGM. The voting will take place online through SurveyMonkey. On the next working day following the AGM (Monday 20th August 2018), members will receive an email containing a unique link to SurveyMonkey where they will be able to vote in the Board elections, and in favour or against motions raised at the AGM. Voting will close on

Elections

The board elections will be contested as there are 10 candidates standing and 9 positions available. Individual positions on the board will be agreed by the board following completion of the election process. Voting will take place online in the 2 weeks preceding the AGM. By agreement of the candidates, the contents of a candidate’s manifesto are their sole representations. The candidate manifestos can be found at appendix 1 to this document and here [LINK]. They will also be available online for the duration of the election process. The manifestos will not be read out at the AGM, however, should a candidate wish to clarify any of the contents of the manifesto, they will be given the opportunity to do so.

Motions from the Chelsea Supporters Trust Board

Motion 1. Board Elections

As per paragraph 8.2 of the CST Election Policy, the highest placed candidates in terms of total votes as equal to number of places available for election declared by the Board shall be deemed elected. There are 10 candidates standing for 9 positions on the Board. The 9 candidates to receive the most votes will be elected.

The prospective Board Members are as follows (in random order):

  • Paul Hay
  • Theresa Magee
  • Chris Rayburn
  • David Chidgey
  • Robert Palmer
  • Henry Fowler
  • David Johnstone
  • Isabella Hislop
  • Cliff Auger
  • Dan Silver

Motion 2. Approval of 2017/18 Accounts and Use of Independent Examiner
The Chelsea Supporters Trust accounts for the year ended 31/5/18 are approved.  Provided revenue remains below £100,000 p.a., in line with accepted practise the Chelsea Supporters Trust Board should continue to appoint an independent examiner at the end of each financial year, rather than an auditor.

Motion 3. Chelsea Supporters Trust Affiliations

The Chelsea Supporters Trust should continue to affiliate to Supporters Direct and the Football Supporters Federation, work with these organisations as appropriate to further the interests of Chelsea supporters, and football supporters in general and take part in national and local campaigns as deemed appropriate.

Motions 4-17 are submitted to the membership following issues which arose in the 2017/18 season and/or were raised in a review of the results of the April 2018 membership survey. The background to a number of these issues, and details of progress in the past twelve months, will be contained in the 2017/18 Chelsea Supporters Trust Annual Report, to be circulated to voting members in advance of the AGM.

Motion 4. The Future of Stamford Bridge
The Chelsea Supporters’ Trust Board notes that the Stamford Bridge redevelopment project has been put on hold indefinitely. The CST board is mandated to continue to work with the club and other relevant stakeholders to ensure a commitment that supporters are at the centre of any further discussions about the future of the ground and that supporter opinion is properly and openly taken into account, with particular emphasis on the continued enjoyment of the match day experience, facilities and ticket pricing going forward.

Motion 5.  The Future of Chelsea Pitch Owners
The Chelsea Supporters’ Trust Board re-affirms its support of and commitment to the aims and importance of the Chelsea Pitch Owners (CPO) in the continuation of Chelsea Football Club at its home, Stamford Bridge. With recent developments relating to the postponement of the development of a new ground on the site of Stamford Bridge, the ‘Board’ actively encourages all members of the ‘Trust’ to buy shares and become a Chelsea Pitch Owner, to safeguard its long-term future. It is mandated to continue to work with the CPO board, and other appropriate bodies, to ensure that the CPO remains relevant to future generations of supporters and to encourage the increasing accessibility of shares to supporters of all ages and backgrounds to expedite this.

Motion 6.  Safe Standing

The Chelsea Supporters’ Trust Board congratulates the work of the Football Supporters Federation and other Supporters Trusts in the developments around the introduction of safe standing this year. The Chelsea Supporters’ Trust Board is mandated to continue to support and contribute to the united effort of fans groups to see the introduction of safe standing in the top three tiers of English football. With particular emphasis on Chelsea the Chelsea Supporters’ Trust Board is mandated to press the Club to take a leading role in the support of safe standing and to introduce safe standing sections at Stamford Bridge as soon as is practicable, in line with national developments on the introduction of pilots for safe standing.

Motion 7. Atmosphere Concerns
The Chelsea Supporters’ Trust Board is mandated to continue to work with the club and other supporters groups looking to improve the atmosphere at Stamford Bridge, as appropriate and to encourage the club to continue dialogue with supporters in respect of ‘singing sections’, flag and banner displays and other supporter driven initiatives to encourage atmosphere in the ground.

Motion 8. Ticket Pricing and Availability
The Chelsea Supporters’ Trust Board is mandated to pursue the issue of fair ticket pricing and ticket allocation for home and away, as well as matters including, but not limited to, rearranged fixtures, away fan travel and stewarding/policing, through whichever channels they deem appropriate. These channels include, but are not necessarily limited to, Chelsea FC; the Premier League; the Football Association; relevant television companies; other Supporters Trusts; the Football Supporters Federation and Supporters Direct.

Motion 9.  Fixture Scheduling

Due to the increasing cost and inconvenience to match going supporters caused by the short notice of Premier League games rearranged to suit the television companies, more notice needs to be given for such rearrangements, published announcement deadlines need to be strictly adhered to and the potential for away supporters to use public transport should be a key consideration when compiling fixtures and anomalous fixtures (e.g. midweek trips to the other end of the country) need to be minimised or eradicated. 

The Chelsea Supporters’ Trust Board is mandated to work with the Football Supporters Federation, other supporter’s trusts and appropriate bodies, inside and outside football, to vigorously campaign for supporter impact to be a key criterion when Premier League fixture schedules and television picks, are drafted.

Motion 10. Membership of Safety Advisory Group
The Safety Advisory Group (SAG) is a statutory council-led committee set up under the Safety of Sports Grounds Act 1975. The Chelsea SAG has representation from the London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham, Metropolitan Police Service. British Transport Police, London Fire and Emergency Planning Authority, London Ambulance Service, St John’s Ambulance Service, the Sports Ground Safety Authority and Chelsea FC. It meets twice a year to discuss relevant issues with regard to Chelsea Football Club. After representations to the local council in late 2015, the Chelsea Supporters Trust now have the opportunity to review the SAG agenda, submit items for discussion and review the meeting minutes. The Chelsea Supporters’ Trust Board believe, while this is progress, there is no valid reason whatsoever why full membership should not be granted and are mandated to push for this.

The Chelsea FC SAG Terms of Reference can be downloaded here

Motion 11.  Ticket Touting
The Chelsea Supporters’ Trust Board is mandated to use its involvement with the relevant authorities with a view to reducing the activities of ticket touts in the Fulham Broadway area before Chelsea home games and to participate in campaigns designed to achieve this. It is also mandated to work with organisations represented on the SAG to assist in educating potentially vulnerable groups in the perils of purchasing tickets in this way, or through using unofficial on-line ticketing organisations.

Motion 12. Stakeholder Engagement
The Chelsea Supporters’ Trust Board has made some progress since its inception in terms of building relationships with relevant stakeholders at a local and national level. The board is mandated to build on this work and to develop relevant effective working relationships with Chelsea FC; Hammersmith and Fulham Council; Local Members of Parliament; Metropolitan Police Service; British Transport Police; Premier League; Football Association; relevant broadcasting organisations; the Department for Culture, Media and Sport and other bodies as deemed appropriate. Where deemed to be more effective (e.g. with the Premier League, FA, broadcasting organisations and DCMS), these relationships are to be built working in conjunction with other supporters trusts or other appropriate organisations.

Motion 13. Football in the Community
The Chelsea Supporters’ Trust Board is mandated to participate in and support appropriate activities designed to promote football, Chelsea FC and its supporters in the community local to Chelsea FC. This could, for example, take the form of charitable work or through supporting specific supporter based campaigns as they arise.

Motion 14. Club Heritage
Building on the Brompton Cemetery Chelsea Graves project, the Chelsea Supporters’ Trust Board is mandated to work with the club, club historian Rick Glanvill and other appropriate bodies/individuals to identify appropriate projects to reflect and enhance the club’s heritage.

Motion 15. Supporters Club Ticket Allocations
The Chelsea Supporters’ Trust Board has had representations from supporters clubs in the UK and abroad with regard to the perceived unfairness of the ticket allocation by the club to different categories of supporters club. They are mandated to work with affiliates, and other supporters clubs.

Motion 16. Supporter Liaison Officer

In the UEFA Supporter Liaison Officer (SLO) Handbook, the SLO role includes the following responsibilities: being a bridge between the fans and the club; informing supporters of club decisions and communicating the fans’ point of view to the club; and building relations with fan groups and initiatives as well as with police and security.  At many Premier league and Football league clubs the role is independent and effective, seen as representing the supporter perspective in dialogue with the club.

The Chelsea Supporters’ Trust Board firmly believes that a fully-independent SLO, with no conflict of interest, representing supporter interests and no other, is essential in properly fulfilling the UEFA remit and optimising effective supporter dialogue. The Chelsea Supporters’ Trust Board is mandated to continue dialogue with the club, and other appropriate bodies, to encourage Chelsea FC to look at making the SLO position independent in line with other Premier League clubs.

Motion 17. Supporter Safety

The Chelsea Supporters’ Trust Board is mandated to engage in dialogue with the club to ensure that the safety of our supporters traveling abroad is adequately considered and of an appropriate level. By doing so we hope to allow shared experiences from other supporters’ trusts from their trips to similar locations so that lessons can be learnt on issues such as travel arrangements, ticket collection, policing, stewarding, security, as well as access and egress of stadium.

FA Cup Ticket Price Protest

We are The Shed and the Chelsea Supporters’ Trust are planning a visual protest at The FA Cup Final to show our disgust at the ticket prices. 

When The Chairman of The FA is presented on the pitch, shortly after ‘Abide with Me’, to shake hands with dignitaries and officials, we urge all supporters turn their backs on the pitch until he has left the pitch.

We urge supporters of both teams to take part and spread the word, to help create a powerful visual protest against FA Cup Final ticket prices and show that collectively we can collaborate, make a point and take action.

This year has seen a substantial increase in ticket prices compared with last season’s final, with the largest allocation of tickets (category 2) increasing in price by 35%.

We urge all those attending the game to take part and help get the message across to The FA that, as football supporters, we are against blatant profiteering at the expense of the supporters and treating us contemptuously as cash cows.

We have had enough and it needs to stop.

FA Cup Final Ticket Pricing

Chelsea Supporters will be looking forward to the FA Cup Final on May 19th; a competition in which we have been very privileged to be at the conclusion of many times over the last 20 years.

However, while the team may have fought long and hard to get there, the supporters have had to dip their hands in their pockets repeatedly during an arduous season, arguably an even greater commitment.

Coupled with season ticket renewals in the middle of May to the tune of (on average) £800, the prospect of paying up to £145 for a FA Cup Final ticket is the straw that breaks the camel’s back.

While we certainly do not hope that this is Chelsea’s last visit to a FA Cup Final for the foreseeable future, this must be the last time the FA gets away with such extortionate ticket prices.

In April, the FA met with Supporters’ Trusts from all four semi-finalists and agreed a number of concessions for the Final including reductions in prices for concessionary tickets; a commitment to review the pricing of tickets behind the goals and introducing an accessibly priced family area going forward and keeping future ticket prices in line with inflation.

However, we believe that this is too little, too late and does not go far enough.

The FA Cup Final remains a very special occasion for football supporters, as a chance to see their team triumph in the most historic club competition in football. While demand always exceeds supply; no supporter able to go should be priced out of the Final.

The FA’s specious argument that the pricing reflects the fact that it is one of the most prestigious events in the sporting calendar and that every penny of profit is reinvested in to the grass roots of the game is subterfuge for blatantly profiteering from the very people whose interests they should serve: the loyal supporters who support the game week in, week out.

The Chelsea Supporters’ Trust, together with the other Supporters’ Trusts, vows to keep the pressure on the FA by any means possible, until the FA agree to change their pricing policy and make ticket prices affordable to the long suffering and ordinary supporter.

We have been taken advantage of for long enough and it’s time for this to stop.

David Chidgey, Chairman, Chelsea Supporters’ Trust

Chelsea FC invites fans to a Club organised trip to Auschwitz

Chelsea Supporters Trust logo

As part of the Club’s ongoing ‘Say No to Antisemitism’ campaign, Chelsea FC are inviting fans groups to join the Club’s trip to Auschwitz on 5 June.

The trip is free of charge and open to all members of the Chelsea Supporters Trust. However, please note that due to the layout of the site there is limited accessibility at the Auschwitz Museum.

The Club would particularly welcome applications from fans aged 18-30 and all attendees would need their own valid travel insurance. The Club will also be extending the invitation to members of Chelsea staff.

Timings are to be confirmed however the trip will depart from Gatwick early on the morning of the 5th returning to Gatwick from Poland the same evening. The Club can arrange transport from Stamford Bridge upon request.

The trip is an important part of the Club’s work tackling Antisemitism. Space, however, is limited and in the event of oversubscription the Club will allocate spaces accordingly. The deadline for applications is Tuesday 15th May.

Should you be interested in participating in this trip please contact Simon Taylor at Chelsea (simon.taylor@chelseafc.com) and copy in membership@chelseasupporterstrust.com to confirm you CST membership, with your:

  • Name
  • Date of birth
  • Passport number

FA Cup Ticket Pricing

The decision to raise prices for the FA Cup semi-finals and finals to the highest levels ever defies belief.
 
The FA has secured record broadcast rights for the competition, there is a lucrative sponsorship deal in place, and attendances throughout the competition have been higher than in recent years. The FA itself is in better financial health than ever. So we cannot see the rationale for hiking prices.

The FA could have tried to explain the reasoning to fans, but once again the people who are the lifeblood of the game, the paying customers, were not consulted or even given advance notice. Like it or lump it is the clear message.
 
Supporters of all four clubs have already spent a fortune following their teams from round three onwards. Our reward for reaching the last four is price rises 10x the rate of inflation. The FA has taken this decision at a time when, by contrast, the Premier League has reduced the cost of away tickets to a maximum of £30.
 
Freezing the lowest ticket price category is a token gesture that will benefit only a small minority of supporters. These price increases further illustrate the longstanding issue we have with the FA as both the regulator of the game as well as the worst offender when it comes to excessive ticket prices for fans. A concession discount of just £10 further compounds the issue.

 
The price of football at the top level is already extortionate. This latest decision is nothing more than opportunistic exploitation of fan loyalty. We expect better from a body that claims to be the guardian of the game, especially in the oldest and most famous cup competition in world football.
 
We wonder, too, how the FA’s commercial partners feel about being associated with such naked opportunism.
 
The FA still has time to rethink. It should.

Chelsea Supporters’ Trust, Tottenham Hotspur Supporters’ Trust, Manchester United Supporters’ Trust, Southampton fan groups
21 March 2018

Pat Nevin Q&A

Full recording of the Pat Nevin Q&A at the Chelsea Supporters’ Trust SGM held in October…

After the recent Chelsea Supporters’ Trust SGM, we were delighted at have former Chelsea player, Pat Nevin as our special guest.

Pat Nevin is one of Chelsea’s most loved former players and graced the Stamford Bridge pitch with his style and flair in the 1980’s. 

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 talked about his career with Chelsea and gave us his thoughts on the current Chelsea side, modern football and working in the media.

The full Q&A can be heard here:

CST Special General Meeting Podcast 21/10/17

Full recording of the Chelsea Supporters’ Trust Special General Meeting held in October…

The Chelsea Supporters’ Trust held their first SGM of the season in the Atlas Pub recently.

The Agenda covered subjects uppermost in Chelsea Supporters minds including the issue of Kick-Off times and their re-scheduling for TV covered by Tim Rolls. In addition Ramzi Shammas discussed the recent Annual Survey and plans for the survey next year; Cliff Auger discussed supporters issues and the recent unveiling of the Jack Whitley Memorial and plans for further work with Brompton Cemetery and Henry Fowler presented an update on our efforts with the campaign for Safe Standing.

Charles Rose, Chairman, Chelsea Pitch Owners also presented  an update of the CPO’s recent activities. 

CST members were also given the chance to ask questions  to the board.

The meeting was recorded and can be heard in full here:

Brompton Cemetery Clean Up

The Chelsea Supporters’ Trust  Clean-Up group are planning another day at Brompton Cemetery on Saturday November 11th for a tidy up of the sites we have worked on previously and to plant some bulbs on or very close to the graves.

We recently visited the cemetery for a recce and flowering bulbs have been purchased ready to plant.

We’ll provide tools and gloves once again with some forks and shovels too.

The meeting place will again be at the Fulham Road entrance of Brompton Cemetery at 11.00 am Saturday November 11th.

It will also provide an opportunity for those of you who have not yet had the chance to look at the Jack Whitley Memorial stone, laid recently.

We hope to see some of you then.

Supporters Meet The Premier League

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.

FansBet Sponsorship completes Shrewsbury Town’s Safe Standing Crowdfunding Campaign

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.