Notes from August's Trust Board meeting
NEWPORT COUNTY AFC SUPPORTERS’ TRUST BOARD MEETING
REDACTED NOTES FOR PUBLICATION
AUGUST 15, 2019, 5.30pm
MERLIN HOUSE, LANGSTONE BUSINESS PARK, NEWPORT
ATTENDEES: Shaun Johnson (Chair, SJ) Gavin Foxall (GF), Colin Faulkner (CF), Bob Herrin (BH), Kevin Ward (KW), Ryan Courtney (RC), Mike Everett (ME), Nigel Stephenson (NS), Kelly Anderson (KA).
APOLOGIES: Peter Madigan (PM), Mark Crook (MC).
WELCOME: On behalf of the Board, SJ welcomed KA to the meeting following the recent election. KA was attending the meeting as an observer pending confirmation successful completion of the Owners and Directors Test.
- APPROVAL OF MINUTES FROM LAST MEETING
- The minutes of the Trust Board meeting held on July 18, 2019, were approved as an accurate record.
- MATTERS ARISING
- NS confirmed final payment from Wembley following the Play-Off Final was awaited. Management accounts to year-end would be completed once this was received.
- The Owners and Directors Test documentation for KA and Paul Marks (PM) had been submitted to the EFL and we await approval for both to formally serve as directors.
- NS presented the amended 2019/20 budget and confirmed the West Ham tie in the Carabao Cup was unbudgeted. The budget was approved unanimously.
- Season ticket sales had exceeded 1,800.
- A 12-month cashflow forecast was to be produced.
- Sales invoicing is up to date.
- VAT and Rodney Parade payments are up to date.
- Full grant has been approved for the Academy. First payment is due to be received at the end of August.
- Callum Jones begins in the new admin role on August 22, reporting to NS in the first instance.
- NS reported on the decision to suspend season ticket sales ahead of West Ham tie. It was agreed this needed to be communicated to the Board in advance of a decision in future. GF took action to contact Flowte regarding suspension issue.
- NS to decide whether additional help would be needed for West Ham ticket sales and communicate to Board by the morning of 16/8/19. Board was keen to provide any additional temporary staffing that might be needed.
- HEALTH AND SAFETY
- GF confirmed again we had achieved an overall percentage of 91.83% in our Health & Safety audit.
- Those with safety management duties and responsibilities have now attended the appropriate courses to enable them to meet the legal obligation in respect of safety management.
- Those who drive for work purposes have completed the necessary forms to ensure that they have valid driving documents.
- Team briefings have included Health & Safety as an agenda.
- The necessary changes have been made to Club policies in accordance with EFL advice.
- The next audit would not be for two years.
- RETAIL REVIEW
- GF and CF had carried out a review of the club’s retail operations, with input from other directors, staff and volunteers. Recommendations of the review were as follows, and would be communicated at the next open meeting for supporters.
- Single director ownership for all retail activity.
- Performance reporting to be introduced as part of the Club Group.
- Full-time Retail Manager needs to be appointed. Role would cover all match days.
- Licence agreements need to be put in place for all third parties using our trademark – this needs to include others carrying out products across the city and beyond.
- Digital offering needs a complete overhaul.
- Pricing margin to be considered to ensure that it is worth carrying certain products.
- Ordering needs to focus better on having products available at the right time.
- All recommendations were approved unanimously by the Board. Retail Manager role to be advertised. BH to ‘own’ retail with support from ME.
- GF presented an update on operational issues.
- Programme – New design contract signed with Ignition Media.
- EFL – Audit at first game. Very positive feedback with 2 minor faults.
- Family Excellence – We are targeting Gold standard this season.
- Clwb Spytty – 72 signed up to the new package to date.
- GF presented an update on Academy matters.
- Parents’ engagement session held – Positive reception.
- New appointments to meet EFL requirements in place – operations, coaching.
- Jay Williams gone to Fulham – Good for player and club.
- EQUALITY AND DIVERSITY/SAFEGUARDING
- CF presented an update.
- CF taken DSO role until GP replacement sorted.
- Training dates booked for staff in key positions.
- New DSO working to verify baseline and ensuring policies are being implemented.
- DBS verification access being sorted.
- There were no equality and diversity issues reported during the month.
- ANY OTHER BUSINESS
- West Ham ticketing: The Board agreed to set prices at usual EFL League Two levels, with hospitality pricing the same as the Middlesbrough FA Cup tie. Match sponsorship to be £1.5k with match ball sponsorship at £850. 300 hospitality tickets. Normal ticket arrangements for players and staff. It was agreed priority sales for Trust members, season ticket holders, Clwb Spytty members and volunteers would be on August 20 & 21, with general sales on August 22 & 23. Sales to be 9am-7pm at the Rodney Parade ticket office.
- Kit contract: GF reported work needed to start on the tendering process for the new kit contract as soon as possible with a view to a deal being in place by the end of November and next season’s kit to be ordered by February at the latest.
- Club Group update: Lennie Lawrence was to be invited to join the Club Group. This received the unanimous approval of the full Board.
- General Manager: The Board agreed to begin the recruitment process for a General Manager role.
- Membership update: CF reported there were now 925 active Trust members and 47 registered (signed up but first payments yet to be received). Active members were now providing an annual income of £100,020. Assuming all those registered become active members would move annual income to £118,920.
Meeting closed at 8.45pm
Next meeting: Thursday, September 19, at Merlin House, 5.30pm start.