Minutes Of Meeting with Southport Football Club- 28/11/07

One of Trust in Yellows' major objectives from the outset has been to represent supporters to the club's board of directors. Members, supporters, committee members and the board of directors have all acknowledged the need to formally underpin the working relationship of the two bodies. Having campaigned supporters via the local media and on the trustinyellow.com website - TIY produced an agenda and a series of questions to put to the board, the answers are presented below.

Present: Jonathan O’Byrne (TIY Chairman), Andrew Davis (Committee), Julia
Urwin (Committee), Rob Urwin (Membership Secretary), Charlie Clapham
(Southport FC Chairman) and Haydn Preece ( Southport Football Club Chief

Venue: Grandstand Club

Progress from last meeting

Trust in Yellow thanked Charlie and Haydn for agreeing to meet with TIY
after our initial conversations. Following on from discussions in the last
meeting in July the club has now implemented the credit debit facilities
in the club shop thus paving the way for online transactions via a
“webshop” in the near future. The trust conveyed their confidence that the
implementation will increase revenue on merchandise sales. Both TIY and
SFC agreed and acknowledged the importance in support involvement in
democratically choosing the anthem the club run out to on match days – the
Do Ron Ron

PA System

Trust in Yellow indicated their desire to fund a new system , echoing
supporters concerns regarding the public address system. These concerns
related to safety, particularly so in the Jack Carr Stand. Both parties
agreed that the quality of the PA system was poor and Trust in Yellow
considered it as a priority. Also brought to the table were varying quotes
as to cost. Steve Wignall has kindly offered his services to the trust in
bringing the system up to standard this will cost £3000. Other quotes have
ranged up to £20000 and both the trust and Charlie Clapham are examining
the Football Foundation funding opportunities. Trust in Yellow expressed
their desire to have an enhanced system in place by the start of
pre-season 2008. A collective decision as to which route to pursue will be
made early in the New Year.

Ground Improvements

Trust in Yellow declared that if they were to make regular investments in
the stadia it would be appropriate to be aware of any long term plans the
club had. Charlie Clapham announced that the club were in the process of
compiling a report to the Football Foundation, this was two fold, ideal
and realistic changes to the ground Ground naming rights are under
discussion along with stand(s) naming possibilities


Trust in Yellow commented that the general consensus is that supporters
find that the catering does not match the standards produced by other
clubs at this level. TIY asked about the possibilities of enhancing
catering operations at the ground. The trust were told to continue
dialogue with Richard Hughes of Caterforce to discuss how the trust can
contribute to improving match day operations. TIY will report their
findings in due course..

Reserve Team

Trust in Yellow questioned the policy regarding having no reserve team.
One school of thought is that the reserves provide a perfect platform to
bridge the gap between the excellent PASE system and the first team -
Giving the players exposure to open age football. The reserves would also
provide somewhere for local talent who do not have the academic
qualifications to meet the PASE system to develop their potential at the
club. Finally the reserve team would also provide a place for those
players returning to full fitness following injury.

TIY asked whether the main reason behind the reserve team being culled in
2005/06 was down to financial or logistical constraints. The club answered
that it would cost £15,000 a season to run a reserve team. The chairman
stated that his priority remained the first team. The trust presented
research gauged on standard information on energy resources, insurance,
travelling conditions, the Lancashire FA and discussions with other
reserve teams in the local area. This research indicated the costs were
around £5,000. In addition there was scope to bring in revenue to reduce
the size of the investment. The trust could examine covering the
shortfall. The chairman felt that there were costs in addition to the
estimate provided by the trust.

TIY openly admitted that previously the reserve team had not been utilised
to its’ entirety by previous managers. TIY felt that it was the clubs’
responsibility to ensure the manager uses the resources at his disposal.
The chairman felt it was at the managers’ discretion as to the degree to
which he used the reserves. TIY commented that Morecambe had used the
PASE-Reserve team development as a foundation for their promotion to the
football league, the counter argument provided is that Crewe have a
successful youth structure – without having a “reserve team”

The chairman felt that a reserve team playing regularly at Haig Avenue
would be detrimental to the condition of the pitch and would place further
strain on the clubs limited human resources. The trust asked if they could
provide the chairman with a proposal for reserve team football, playing
elsewhere. TIY will carry out further feasibility studies early in the New

Meet The Manager

TIY stated that they would welcome the opportunity for supporters to have
an open forum with the manager. Both chairman and chief executive agreed
this could be arranged in due course.


Charlie confirmed, it is the club’s intention to continue with AGM’s
despite a change in the laws which no longer required them as of right.

Disabled Enclosure

The club have a specification for building the disabled enclosure. Steve
Wignall has again offered his help in this area and Rob Urwin will discuss
with Steve and put him in touch with Haydn Preece to take the initiative

Grandstand Bar

Both TIY and Haydn/Charlie would like to see the bar used more regularly
and the up and coming music nights organised by TIY are welcome. More
events of this nature are required to keep the Grandstand Bar rocking!

TIY thanked the club for the meeting and requested a further meeting at a
later stage to continue the dialogue between independent supporters trust
and club.

RSS Feed