Brompton Cemetery Clear Up Project – 26 March 2016

A neighbour of Stamford Bridge, Brompton Cemetery is the final resting place of many significant people who have a lasting connection with Chelsea Football Club, most notably the Mears family, Henry Augustus (Gus) Mears having founded our club on 10 March 1905. The meeting where the decision to set up the club was made took place in an upstairs room at the Rising Sun pub (currently the Butcher’s Hook) located opposite The Bridge. The wealthy landlord of the Rising Sun was Alfred Frederick Janes who, along with other members of his family, is also buried at Brompton Cemetery. It was this grave that the clear up team paid particular attention to, the site having been neglected for many years and obscured by a mass of overgrowth.

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The clear up event was organised by Trust board member Cliff Auger along with club historian and Trust member Rick Glanvill and The Friends of Brompton Cemetery, with Chelsea FC providing the gardening tools. Rick was instrumental in seeking the required family permissions to allow the group to work on the grave, and he has also produced a leaflet charting the Chelsea related history of the cemetery, called Final Whistle: The Chelsea Football Club Trail at Brompton Cemetery.

A healthy turnout of 11 willing volunteers helped out on a grey Easter Saturday, including David Beauchamp of the Friends of Brompton Cemetery and Chris Mears, a descendent of the club’s founders.

After paying our respects at the Mears family plot, we moved on to the site of the Janes’s family grave and set about hacking our way through the thick overgrowth of ivy and bramble to the point where the surrounding area was sufficiently cleared to allow the splendid looking grave to be accessed and seen clearly once again. Sustained part way through with hot cross buns baked by Trust Chairman Tim Rolls and a few amusing stories from Chris Mears, the whole team felt they had made great progress before calling it a day, retiring to, where else, the Butcher’s Hook for some much needed refreshment following our thirsty work! But not before paying our respects at the grave of former Chelsea manager Bobby Campbell who sadly passed away last November.

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It was a great start to the project and we plan to make it a regular event, the next visit due to take place after the end of this season.  If you would like to get involved please contact us at enquiries@chelseasupporterstrust.com.

With grateful thanks to our members and friends who came along and helped out; Cliff Auger, David Beauchamp, Debs Coady, Diane Edwards, Steve Hadlow, Paula Harding, Neil Jones (joining us all the way from the West Midlands), Chris Mears, Celia Mindelsohn, Tim Rolls, and Dan Usher.

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Virtual General Meeting – 23 March 2016

The Chelsea FanCast hosted the Chelsea Supporters’ Trust ‘Virtual General Meeting’

On the panel were Tim Rolls, CST Chairman; Richard Weekes, Membership co-ordinator & Social Media and David Chidgey, PR, Media & Communications.

The Trust is mandated to hold 4 public meetings per year including the AGM, and we are committed to having one of them as a ‘virtual’ rather than face to face meeting, broadcast live via Chelsea FanCast’s mixlr stream, so that those who unable to attend our meetings in person have the opportunity to participate and contribute.

The agenda for the meeting is below:

1. Introductions & thanks plus instructions re asking questions

2. Apologies re lack of face-to-face meeting

3. Ticket Pricing – reaction to club announcement and PL £30 cap.

4. Brompton Cemetery project

5. Temporary stadium, redevelopment and CPO.

6. Delay in announcement of TV games and dialogue with PL.

7. Other issues
7.1 Atmosphere in general
7.2 2016 survey
7.3 Website rebuild
7.4 Fans Forum
7.5 2016 AGM & Election Process

8. Questions to the panel

Newsletter – March 2016

Chelsea Supporters Trust – Newsletter – March 2016

Despite the highly chastening few days Chelsea have endured on the field, there has been plenty happening with regard to Chelsea Supporters Trust activity.

THIS WEDNESDAY – Virtual Meeting

As we advised in the last newsletter, finding suitable rooms to hold CST Special General Meetings after home matches is proving almost impossible. The Finborough Arms now has other events in the evenings and other potential venues are not available. To ensure we deliver on our commitment to member dialogue, therefore, we will be holding a Virtual General Meeting from 19.00 this Wednesday 23rd March. The VGM will last 60-90 minutes and will cover current issues we believe to be of relevance to our membership.
You can listen in to the VGM, using facilities provided by the Chelsea Fancast, by clicking this link. You can also email questions with subject header VGM to email address: enquiries@chelseasupporterstrust.com .

Ticket Pricing

You will almost certainly have seen that Chelsea have announced a freeze on ticket prices next season. You will also have read about the £30 cap on away tickets, which will significantly benefit our travelling supporters. Here is the link to the Club announcement which was made a couple of weeks ago.
The CST board issued a statement in response to the announcements which can be found here. The end of away ticket categorisation is particularly welcome, as it was clearly and indefensibly discriminatory against supporters of the ‘big’ clubs. As our statement says, the £30 away cap needs to be the beginning, not the end, and national campaigning on ticket pricing will rightly continue. The Premier League (PL) away cap announcement shows what can happen when Supporters Trusts across a range of clubs work together. We also make the point about the need for intelligent pricing in both the proposed temporary move and in a redeveloped.

Stamford Bridge. Brompton Cemetery – Chelsea Founders Maintenance Project

The CST are pleased to be involved, with the club, the Friends of Brompton Cemetery and official Chelsea historian Rick Glanvill, in the Chelsea Founders Maintenance Project. As part of this project, a clean-up of some of the Chelsea-related graves in Brompton Cemetery has been organised for Saturday 26th March at 11.00.
There are a number of graves closely associated with Chelsea FC and several of these are inaccessible due to overgrowth. Chelsea Football Club has kindly agreed to provide us with any tools and safety gloves we might need. More details are given here, including how to take part here. We would encourage as many CST members to participate in this worthwhile activity, helping to preserve and promote the heritage of the club.

Temporary Stadium

As part of a wider, detailed piece of work around future ticket pricing we are carrying out research into the increased costs and times taken to reach each of the potential temporary stadia to be utilised while Stamford Bridge is being rebuilt. When this work is complete we will share it with the club, and also with our membership. There is a danger that the primary focus will only be on the redeveloped stadium, but clearly an absence from Stamford Bridge for a minimum of three years is likely to have significant impact on match-going supporters.

Rescheduled TV Games

The announcement of the rescheduled April TV fixtures was made later than the supposed deadline of six weeks. This delay in making that announcement, largely caused by the TV companies, happens all too often and causes inconvenience and unnecessary cost to supporters who cannot book travel, make family arrangements, taken time off work etc.
We raised the issue with the PL, who gave us a revised date that they did adhere to. When PL trusts next formally meet PL representatives we will again reiterate the importance of adherence to the published deadline. The Sunderland away game scheduled for Saturday 7th May is the only remaining Chelsea game that could be moved and, because of the distance and cost involved in travelling we will reiterate to the PL the importance of adherence to the agreed deadline.

Fans Forum

The next Chelsea Fans Forum is on 20th April. If you have any issues you would like raised by our rep Debbie Coady, please let us know at email address enquiries@chelseasupporterstrust.com with ‘Fans Forum’ as the subject header.

FA Cup Final Ticket Allocations

Following a campaign by the Football Supporters Federation and a lot of hard work by Tim Payton of Arsenal Supporters Trust, the FA have agreed that each team competing in the FA Cup Final should get an extra 3,500 tickets, which is clearly good news. A CST representative, together with reps from Arsenal, Spurs and Liverpool trusts, saw FA executives on a range of issues including final ticket allocations a couple of years and it is very pleasing that this issue has been successfully taken forward. You can read about this here.
It is worth remembering that in the 1967 FA Cup Final, Chelsea and Spurs only received 16,000 tickets each so the situation has certainly improved over the past fifty years, though clearly in an ideal world the two clubs would get the vast majority of tickets.

CST Banner

The long-planned CST banner made its debut against Stoke City, on the Upper Tier of the Matthew Harding Stand, as this photograph shows.

Chelsea Supporters Trust banner at Stamford bridge

Transport Information

Advance train ticket alerts from thetrainline.com. Please be aware fixtures are subject to change due to television demands, before booking: http://www.thetrainline.com/ticketalert/football/premier-league

Get a third off rail fares with the Two Together Railcard. http://www.twotogetherrailcard.co.uk/

Travel to the Bridge by train? Weekend travel news from TfL: http://www.tfl.gov.uk/tfl/livetravelnews/realtime/track.aspx?offset=weekend

Follow TfL travel status & updates on Twitter: https://twitter.com/TfLTravelAlerts

If you have comments or questions on any of the above information, or any other CST activity, please let us know: enquiries@chelseasupporterstrust.com

A PDF version of March 2016 Newsletter can be downloaded here.

Statement re Ticket Pricing – 10 March 2016

Chelsea Supporters Trust – 10 March 2016
Ticket Pricing – Statement of the Chelsea Supporters Trust

The Chelsea Supporters Trust board welcomes Chelsea FC’s recent announcement with regard to ticket prices for the 21016/17 season – frozen home ticket prices for the ninth time in eleven years, a Premier League-wide cap of £30 on away tickets and a continuation of Chelsea’s subsidy of away travel.

The belated recognition by the Premier League (PL) of the importance of away supporters is particularly welcome, especially as the price cap means an end to the pernicious practise of categorisation, whereby supporters of Chelsea and other ‘top’ PL clubs currently pay far more for away tickets than supporters of other clubs. Praise is due to all the Supporters Trusts, the Football Supporters Federation and the other organisations who have campaigned nationally on this issue for some years.

Of course, what the cap means is that home supporters will pay more than away supporters for similar seats, and campaigning on ticket pricing will continue. While we acknowledge and recognise that ticket prices in the past decade have stabilised at Chelsea, this is against a backdrop, pre-Abramovich, of many years of prices increases far above inflation, pricing out thousands of loyal supporters and limiting opportunities to build up young match-going support.

The extra television money coming into PL clubs with the impending television deal means the clubs have the financial reserves to reduce all ticket prices, particularly for groups such as young supporters, who are the future lifeblood of the game. Everton’s price reductions for next season prove this. Although Chelsea’s 2016/17 prices have been finalised, we believe the real opportunity for a change in the club’s home ticket pricing strategy presents itself in 2017/18 and beyond.

It is currently planned that Chelsea move to a temporary home from the 2017/18 season. We believe that this temporary move presents both challenges and opportunities to the club. Whichever stadium becomes Chelsea’s temporary home, the potentially larger capacity, allied (for many supporters) to less convenient travel and extra travel cost means a price-sensitive approach to both season-tickets and match tickets is likely to be needed to fill the stadium. It also means that there is the opportunity to offer a significant number of attractively-priced tickets for young supporters, which would have the added benefit of enhancing atmosphere in Chelsea’s temporary home. We have pointed out these and other, related issues in communications with the club, and will be looking to reiterate and build on this dialogue in the coming months.

The redeveloped Stamford Bridge, of course, presents another set of significant challenges and opportunities when it comes to ticket pricing and, at the appropriate time, we will be looking to hold positive dialogue with the club on this issue.

Regards
Tim Rolls, Chair
On behalf of the Chelsea Supporters Trust board

Chelsea Supporters Trust
Making your voice heard

Email: enquiries@chelseasupporterstrust.com
Twitter: @ChelseaSTrust
Facebook: /ChelseaSupportersTrust
Website: www.chelseasupporterstrust.com

A pdf version of the statement can be downloaded here:

Chelsea Supporters Trust Statement on Ticket Pricing 10 March 2016