Notes from May 26 Trust Board meeting
MEETING OF NEWPORT COUNTY AFC SUPPORTERS’ TRUST BOARD MEETING
MAY 26, 2022, 7pm
MEETING HELD AT RODNEY PARADE
REDACTED NOTES FOR PUBLICATION
ATTENDEES (Board members): Paul Marks (PMa, Chair), Joe Crocker (JC), Mark Crook (MC), Mike Everett (ME), Gavin Foxall (GF), Bob Herrin (BH), Shaun Johnson (SJ), Kevin Ward (KW).
ATTENDEES (Club staff): Nigel Stephenson (NS).
APOLOGIES: Colin Faulkner (CF), Peter Madigan (PM)
- APPROVAL OF MINUTES FROM LAST MEETING (PMa)
- The minutes of the Trust Board meeting on April 28, 2022, were approved as an accurate record.
- MATTERS ARISING (PMa)
- None that are not included in agenda items.
- LEAGUE/CLUB/UPDATE (GF)
- First team: James Rowberry (JR) gave Club Group reflection on season. Pleased with culture developing. Detailed stats presented including comparisons with other clubs. Development plan for all players aged under 24 will be extended to all playing staff as part of season reflection.
- Recruitment: Window opens June 10. Sam Bowen announced. Will Evans tomorrow. Raft of other targets, both permanent & loans. JR happy with where we are with recruitment.
- Pre-season: JR took Club Group through pre-season matches & plan for all players to have 90 minutes. Fixtures to be announced tomorrow. Some behind closed doors, some may not allow away fans, others will. Training camp in second week of pre-season. Focus on data and on smaller squad of 22 players. Second physio appointed to concentrate on player availability.
- Ticketmaster: Had kick-off meeting with them. Data & branding shared with them. Website being developed. Training on site. Season ticket sales from middle June . Will issue FAQs for supporters.
- Close season plan: Already shared with Board and comms gone out to supporters. 13 different comms since close of season. June 23 – club & Trust AGM. June 24 – sponsor evening. June 30 – meet the manager/open meeting. July 6 – away day. July 19 – shirt sponsor evening.
- Away day: All departments including board together for an afternoon. Aim to agree set of values to drive performance.
- EFL Conference: NS & GF to attend and will report back to next Board meeting.
- OPERATIONAL UPDATE (NS)
- Season ended successfully from an operational viewpoint.
- Rodney Parade ground staff awarded EFL League 2 Grounds Team of the Year Award.
- Academy season concluded with revenue and costs remaining in line with budget.
- New scholars confirmed and announced for 22-23 season.
- Plans in place to recruit new Head of Education operating from the base at Lliswerry.
- Matchday ticket sales concluded for the season with an average attendance of 4,227.
- Season ticket sales (including half season tickets) reached a total of 2,194.
- Matchday operations performed satisfactorily over the season.
- Matchday pop-up shop proved very popular with fans.
- FINANCIAL UPDATE (NS)
- Overall positive position. Revenue income in general in line with budget and therefore online to achieve forecasted cash position.
- No creditor pressure and all required statutory returns completed.
- COMMERCIAL UPDATE (GF in PM absence)
- Commercial revenue target for 22-23 of £250k.
- All other activity in line with commercial plan.
- TICKET PRICES (GF)
- There was a lengthy discussion around options for 22/23 following extensive work already presented to the Board on comparisons with other clubs in League Two. Cost of living challenges formed the basis of the discussion.
- Agreed £22 increase for adult seated season tickets, £20 for adult terrace season tickets (ie one fewer free match – 9 free games reduced to 8 free games). All other season ticket prices frozen. Match day tickets frozen. 100 Club tickets frozen. Hospitality as budget. Mascot package experience will now be re-introduced for the forthcoming season.
- EQUALITY, DIVERSITY & INCLUSION (GF in CF absence)
- KW gave an update on the Walk for Dementia. Approx £2k raised but likely more to come in.
- GF informed meeting that CF was stepping down from the Board, but was happy to remain involved in an unofficial capacity. No announcement until elections are launched at AGM. GF Agreed to write formally to CF to thank him for this time on the Board.
- COMMUNITY GROUP (PMa)
- Active trust membership stands at 1,092.
- Membership engagement activity continues.
- Community group meeting held on 12th May.
- Further call held with Trust Support Group.
- PMa asked if each Board member could bring in at least one additional corporate Trust member.
- SAFEGUARDING (GF)
- Follow up with Academy members who have been released and supporting around transition for those remaining and have contacted every family to discuss their child's well-being who have been released.
- Focus on strategies and planning for the season ahead - inductions, LFE education, codes of conduct, match day, training required ahead of the new seasons etc.
- New safeguarding online training specifically for Board members by the EFL being released soon.
- Club’s new Mental & Emotional Health and policy was signed off by the Board.
- ANY OTHER BUSINESS
- Elections: PMa said next round of elections are due. Propose to have 6 elected positions available. Ballot will be online or postal by exception. Launch at AGM. Close nominations July 8. If needed, election to commence week beginning July 11. Four current directors up for re-election if they wish to stand – GF, ME, PMa, SJ – plus vacancies created by resignations of KA and CF.
- AGMs: June 23 for both club and Trust.
Meeting closed at 9.20pm.
Next meeting: Thursday, July 7, at 7pm.