Supporters Direct News December 2015

Here’s the latest monthly news round-up from Supporters Direct.  It includes an update on the Football Expert Working Group.

Supporters Direct News Mail – December

Welcome to the latest Supporters Direct news mail!

Welcome to the December edition of our monthly news mail, bringing you all the headlines from the Trust movement.

SD hitting the headlines
December has been a busy month for Supporters Direct. We launched our new report Incentivising & Supporting Community Ownership in Sport in Westminster which looks into giving community owned clubs tax breaks. Jesse Norman MP hosted the event which was attended by over 55 guests from sporting authorities, MP’s and community owned clubs.

Read the article in The Independent

It’s also been all go north of the boarder with the announcement of the Supporters Summit which is taking place in January. The Scotsman has also featured an article by Head of SD Scotland, Andrew Jenkin, on our work in Scotland.

We would like to take this opportunity to wish all our members a Happy Christmas and a successful 2016!

English Football Expert Working Group update
Earlier this month, the Sports Minister Tracey Crouch confirmed in Parliament that she will be responding to the Expert Working Group (EWG) on supporter ownership and engagement in January. The report was commissioned by Government, and the report was delivered to Government in November, who are currently reviewing it and will respond and publish the report in January.


Call for nominations – SD council elections
Supporters Direct has three councils – the England & Wales Football Council, the Scottish Council and the Rugby League Council. These bodies assist the Board by monitoring activity against budgets, development plans and other KPIs in their particular area and contributing ideas and suggestions regarding SD strategy in their area for consideration by the Board.

More news from Supporters Direct…


Go-ahead for AFC Wimbledon’s new stadium
Supporters Direct would like to send their congratulations to AFC Wimbledon following the news that Merton Council has approved plans to build a new stadium in the borough and marks the club’s return to Wimbledon.

Tonbridge Angels Football Fightback Fund smashes £22,000 barrier
First Cardiac Screening Programme on 9/10 January

Tonbridge Angels can confirm that in excess of £22,000 has been raised in their Football Fightback campaign that aims to screen 800 young people in the quest to eradicate death through undetected cardiac issues.

Within the past seven years two Angels players have died through such causes, the second actually on a football pitch and as a result the club decided that this simply mustn’t happen again. The club committed to raise £28,000 to meet the cost of screening 800 people that would cover not just the club’s own players but a much wider body of young people across the county.

Lewes FC and Newman College announce girls football academy partnership
Lewes Football Club and Brighton & Hove’s Newman College (the Sixth Form of Cardinal Newman Catholic School), are delighted to announce the launch of a Girls’ Football Academy Programme commencing September 2016.

The partnership will offer a two year programme of high-quality, full-time education, as well as exceptional, academy-style coaching on Lewes Football Club’s new £1m 3G FIFA approved pitch.

Girls between the ages of 16 and 19 will be able to combine quality football coaching with academic studies in order to develop their sporting skills further.

Cambridge Fans United to support foodbank
Cambridge Fans United and Cambridge City Foodbank announced that they will work together to help local people who are in hardship. Although Cambridge is a City of innovation and wealth, costs are high and there are thousands of people in hardship, sometimes having to choose between food and heat. The fans and supporters of Cambridge United Football Club understand the importance of teamwork and supporting each other and Dave Matthew-Jones, Chairman of the Supporters Trust, believes the same spirit applies to helping those in need.


Volunteer opportunities with Supporters Direct
We are currently looking for two enthusiastic volunteers to help us with Business Development and Communications and Social media.

North West Regional Meeting: Fundraising
We will be holding our first regional meeting of 2016 at FC United of Manchester’s fantastic Broadhurst Park facility in Moston, Manchester on the evening of Wednesday 10th February from 6:30pm to 9:30pm.

This North West regional meeting will have the overarching theme of fundraising and is aimed at giving trusts and clubs ideas on how to raise capital for projects, provide information on available grant funding as well as talk about long term, consistent, sustainable fundraising schemes.


SD Scotland Supporters Summit 2016

Supporters Direct Scotland have announced details of a ‘Supporters’ Summit’ offering fans in Scotland the opportunity to come together to hear from a host of speakers on how involving fans within the game’s running can benefit Scottish football. It will be taking place on Sunday 10th January at Hampden Park.

Speaking at the event will be Jamie Hepburn MSP, the Minister for Sport in Scotland, who will be discussing the Scottish Government’s consultation which is currently taking supporters’ views on how to strengthen supporter involvement and influence of football clubs.


Turkish Football Federation host SLO bilateral meeting
When Fenerbahce hosted Celtic FC for the final match of the UEFA Europa League group stage, the Turkish Football Federation (TFF) took the opportunity to organise a bilateral SLO meeting between the Turkish clubs and the SLO of Celtic FC. Also invited to participate were Loukas Anastasiadis of SD Europe and Stefan Schatz, fan project worker and former SLO of FC St. Pauli, who travelled to Istanbul to see the match together with the supporters of Celtic.

SD Europe/UEFA SLO Coordinator Stuart Dykes interviewed by the SEF
Following a recent SLO workshop in Sweden, the Swedish Football League (SEF) ran a piece on its website that included an interview with of SD Europe/UEFA SLO Coordinator Stuart Dykes. We are happy to reproduce a translation of the piece here.



All-party parliamentary Rugby League group
Supporters Direct, as Associate members, attended the All-party parliamentary Rugby League Group at The Palace of Westminster on 15th December.  The Secretary to the Group provided a details report of a huge amount of correspondence sent and received with a large number of organisations and reported that The Chancellor of the Exchequer is supporting the bid to host the 2021 Rugby League World Cup in England.  Mark Foster, RFL Marketing & communications Director gave a presentation to the meeting on the 2015 Objectives of the RFL, Achievements and 2016 Targets including challenges, opportunities and priorities for the sport’s governing body in the new season.  He answered many questions from the delegates and took on board some of the weaknesses including the lack of engagement and publicity in London.  One of the Priorities for 2016 is to engage more with supporters and hopefully, Supporters Direct’s proposal to repeat the 2015 partnership with the RFL will be successful and SD can work with supporters in Rugby League to assist the RFL to deliver that aim.

A big thanks…
We would like to say a big thank you to Dulwich Hamlet Supporters Trust for their donations to Supporters Direct.

Your continued support is much appreciated.