Notes from June 2021 Trust Board meeting
NEWPORT COUNTY AFC SUPPORTERS’ TRUST BOARD MEETING
JUNE 24, 2021, 7pm
MEETING HELD VIA VIDEO CONFERENCE
REDACTED NOTES FOR PUBLICATION
ATTENDEES (Board members): Paul Marks (PMa, Chair), Kelly Anderson (KA), Mark Crook (MC), Gavin Foxall (GF), Bob Herrin (BH), Shaun Johnson (SJ), Kevin Ward (KW).
ATTENDEES (Club staff): Nigel Stephenson (NS).
APOLOGIES: Mike Everett (ME), Colin Faulkner (CF), Peter Madigan (PM).
- APPROVAL OF MINUTES FROM LAST MEETING (PMa)
- The minutes of the Trust Board meeting held on April 29, 2021, were approved as an accurate record.
- MATTERS ARISING (PMa)
- None that are not included in agenda items.
- EFL/CLUB/OPERATIONAL UPDATE (GF/NS)
- Sporting Director: The Club Group had earlier been given a presentation by Darren Kelly (DK). This covered the philosophy of the club, playing style and recruitment.
- Pre-season: First team report back on July 1. Two days of testing before a four-day training camp. Friendlies arranged against Undy, Swansea, Chippenham, Blackpool, Cinderford and Cardiff.
- Rodney Parade: GF and PM met David Buttress (DB) and Mark Jones (MJ) from RP as previously reported. It was a very positive meeting and discussions continue. Pitch renovation is moving at pace. There is a challenge around early-season home fixtures and discussions continue between ourselves, RP and the EFL.
- Retail: The club shop in Kingsway is currently closed for refurbishment by Hummel before reopening next week. There will also be a new website.
- Season tickets: There is still doubt on the return of fans for the new season. There is a meeting of the EFL working group next week. The outcome of that, and any lifting of restrictions by Welsh Government, needs to be understood before we release any communications. As last season, we only want to sell a product we can deliver.
- Operational: NS provided a season-to-date report on Media, Retail, Academy, Ticketing and Football Administration operations. Key items: Club Twitter account received 10.3m impressions in May – a new record; Annual accounts for year ended June 30, 2020, finalised; SCMP pre-season 2021/22 submission completed and filed with the EFL; Development squad application successful in respect to Nathaniel MG Cup for 2021/22 season; Covid protocols reviewed for return of players for 2021/22 season. Review based upon the latest EFL guidance, with the Club returning under “Green” guidance.
- FINANCIAL UPDATE (NS)
- Cash flow and budgets remain in line with forecast, including play-offs costs and revenue.
- Overall performance for 20/21 remains significantly ahead of budget.
- All debtors under control, with no new issues arising.
- COMMERCIAL UPDATE (PM)
- GF delivered the report in PM’s absence.
- 2020/21 season
- Despite the uncertainty that surrounded the season we were able to meet 115% of our commercial revenue target.
- Since September 2019 we have introduced 13 new sponsors to the club.
- 2021/22 season
- To date, 93% of the 21/22 commercial revenue target has been sold and invoiced.
- All first team kit and training kit is now sold. The first 12 matches as well as the first five match balls have been sponsored.
- Ticket sponsorship and dug-out sponsors have also been agreed.
- For the 2021/22 and 2022/23 seasons we have agreed two-year arrangements for the front and back of our home shirt as well as the front of our away shirt.
- We have seen a great response to the Player Sponsorship for next season and have sold all but two players completely.
- Planning assumptions have been made for hospitality in order for us to start selling packages for the 2021/22 season.
- EQUALITY, DIVERSITY & INCLUSION (CF)
- GF delivered the report in CF’s absence.
- Zero complaints received.
- EDI Plan 21/22 to be completed – awaiting fixtures.
- County with Pride: TORs & SLA to be finalised along with the logo. Group will launch on June 28 (Stonewall Riots anniversary) with press release being promoted by FfD, Rainbow Wall & FAW Trust.
- BAME: CIDS programme through Academy; Muslim Athlete Charter with Nujum (not just BAME); both feed into the FA Leadership Diversity; facilitate supporter visit to Bradford and vice versa.
- Mental Health: Updated Mental Health Charter to be presented at next Community Group meeting; confirmation of new partnership with Andy’s Man Club.
- TRUST COMMUNITY GROUP (PMa)
- Ongoing follow up to feedback received via Trust Members survey.
- Members prize draw now undertaken and shirts have been dispatched to winners.
- Joe Crocker continues to contact members at key points – e.g. joining, cancelling, birthdays etc.
- Social Media – “Why I’m a Trust member” posts on Facebook and Twitter.
- Positive engagement continues with Trust support group – next meeting w/c July 5.
- SAFEGUARDING (KA)
- KA provided a comprehensive summary of May safeguarding activity and focus points for June. Delivered by GF.
- Club to partner with Beyond the White Line to provide mental health and wellbeing support for players and staff/volunteers; Already in partnership with Swansea City FC, the FAW and Oxford City FC to name a few; Funded by grants such as the National Lottery, fundraising and angel investors; In return BWL just ask for advocacy of the brand; The app is available 24/7, which means a player of member of staff can have someone to chat to within 30-60 seconds. It is an NHS-approved app, which also has hours of content to help with such matters as sleep or common stressors; Provide education workshops for Academy, 1st team, staff around financial wellbeing, career pathway, mental health, wellbeing, transition and equality to name a few, and able to also deliver workshops for parents; The licence issued to the individual will stay with the individual, until they decide that they no longer require access. So if they move club, change career path, the on the move support is still there; No barrier to access, so this is all fully funded, and at no cost to the club or the individual.
- ANY OTHER BUSINESS
Meeting closed at 8.15pm.
Next meeting: Thursday, July 22, at 7pm via Zoom.