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GIVING A VOICE TO BRADFORD CITY SUPPORTERS

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By Bradford City Supporters Trust, Jun 1 2017 04:08PM

Post Play-Off Final Message


Dear Members,



The Wembley occasion was a heartbreaking experience this time round. City's hard working performance which lacked a cutting edge just about summed up the season.



Our support was utterly amazing and a spectacular sight to watch. We were all singing and all standing for large parts of the game. 'Persistent standing' is against the regulations, but Wembley Stadium allowed the K Block Bantams to have an area behind the goal, so that was good of them. Our fans were a great advert in promoting of what the atmosphere would be like if we had Safe Standing in our stadiums.


It was unfortunate that a mindless minority of Millwall supporters invaded the pitch. The Supporters Board have a joint statement sent to the FA and EFL about the pitch invasion. The Trust has delegates to the Supporters board so there was a joint effort in agreeing our points. Please click on our link


We would like to thank Stuart McCall and his management team, the players, the Club owners, all those connected with running the Club, and, of course, a very important ingredient, the collective support of you, the fans (whom without, football is nothing) for their contributing roles in getting OUR Club where we are today. We will see many changes no doubt over the Summer, but hopefully, next season, Bradford City will come back stronger, and with 18,000 plus cheering the Bantams on at Valley Parade we can achieve automatic promotion to the Championship.



Yours sincerely



Manny Dominguez



BCST Chair

By Bradford City Supporters Trust, May 18 2017 09:14PM

Dear Members and Supporters,


Pop down to Valley Parade and see what is happening at the Bangla Bantams Community Day this Sunday and support diversity in football. Events start from 10am and run until 7pm.


Hopefully we will be in a celebratory mood after the excitement of the Play-Off Final at Wembley from the day before!!


Thanks for your support.


Manny Dominguez


BCST Chair

By Bradford City Supporters Trust, May 18 2017 09:06PM

Dear Members,


So, we have reached the Play-Off Final!

The Trust would like to thank the team and Stuart McCall and his management team for all the hard work put into this collective team effort in getting to the final, and giving many thousands of City fans something to cheer about. For those veterans in the side this will be their second successful journey to the Play Offs in successive seasons, and for some this will be their third successive journey to Wembley in five seasons. And to be unbeaten at home in all League games this season just goes to show that we have a team that continues to be ‘history-makers as we progress back up the pyramid.


What made our Play Off Semi-Final tie with Fleetwood special was that the only goal scored over the two legs was scored by non other than Rory McArdle, who has had a history of being there at the right time to score key goals. The matches themselves were scrappily fought out with City dominating most of both games, and we could’ve scored more. But who cares? We’re through!


The votes for the Young Player of the Year Award

We would like to thank you, the members for taking part in voting in the POTY Awards this year. And well done to Josh Cullen who won it! A promising young player abound with talent, he has grown in confidence since been on loan for almost 2 seasons from West Ham. His 58 appearances in a claret and amber shirt tells us that both Parky and McCall value his hard work and team effort. It was certainly a proud moment for me to be able to give the Young Player of the Year Award on stage. My lack of experience in this sort of thing, together with the overwhelming effect of been on stage gave cause for howls of laughter!


At the Player of the Year Awards, Mark Marshall and Stuart McCall to name two amongst others recalled the end Phil Parkinson’s era, and playing under him, to Edin & Stefan investing in the Club and taking on Stuart McCall and his management team, and the positive attitude in the dressing room, the work ethic and great team effort that exists in the team. Mark Marshall was of course the favourite of many supporters groups, sponsors and such like. Meredith, who has been a stalwart in the team, has been my personal favourite. He picked up a PFA player of the year award and an award on the night (I think I remember). Romain Vincalot and Tony McMahon also picked up awards. Once again, I would like to thank our members who took part in voting this year.

Mike Thompson, our former Chair won the Unsung Hero of the year award by the Supporters Board, and Carl Smith, a Supporters Board member was on stage to give it to Mike, who suspected nothing.


Mike joined the Supporters Trust Board in the immediate aftermath of the Club’s financial crisis of 2004, and has been a stalwart member ever since. He has taken on numerous roles for the Supporters Trust, serving as Chair from 2013-2016, and he has been a member of the club’s Supporters Board throughout its existence.

Most recently, he organised the annual collection in 2015 that raised an astonishing total of £8700 for the Burns Unit, and has held extensive discussions with the Football Authorities and the Metropolitan Police over issues raised by last season’s play-off match at Millwall.

Mike has worked tirelessly behind the scenes to represent fans’ interests, and to bring people together, with his trademark forbearance and concern for the individual. He has always thought the best of everyone, and wished everyone the best for themselves. The Supporters Board has made a special exception in his case to honour one of our own as Bradford City’s Unsung Hero of 2017.


Third highest figure ever for the annual Burns Unit collection

The Trust would like to thank all those individuals from the various supporters groups who helped with the bucket collection, in particularly Sally Thackray and Tony Sykes for organising the collection on the last game of the season at home to Wimbledon. We must thank everyone who contributed to the cause in remembering the 56 who, of course perished in that terrible tragedy. The amount raised for the collection was £3,567.08!


#AffordableFootball for all?

I couldn’t help noticing a news item on the website with a headline asking, ‘Do you want to support #AffordableFootball for all?’ and it is about encouraging fans to donate sums of money, large or small, that will contribute to buying season-tickets to fans less financially fortunate to afford one at the £149 price, which Friends Of Bradford City are organising with the backing of the Club. And this follows from the fact that, if we’ve understood it correctly, up to 1,000 City fans have donated their season-tickets back to the Club, who for one reason or another can’t make the games, and over 150 exile City fans across the world have also bought and donated their season-tickets back to the Club. I know that even our City Gent is contributing to purchase and donate a season-ticket as well. I think it is a great human achievement when large groups of people donate to a cause they can identify with, and to support the Club in reaching 20,000 is something City fans do identify with.


There is a sense of collective human solidarity, identifying with the class – the working class after all has always enjoyed following football for generations. Also the Clubs’ local business partner supporters are also involved. This collective contribution is a clear example that without the large collective investment through season-ticket purchases from a working class base there would be no football, which is a genuine reason why football clubs should be owned collectively and democratically by the fans rather than individual business owners with large pockets. It’s the supporters that are really the largest and most genuine shareholders in football, not big business.


What would be interesting to ask the Club is how will they measure or qualify a fan that is less fortunate to get a donated season-ticket?


Flag bearers of bringing affordable season-tickets

The Club however, rightly sees itself as one of the leading flag bearers of bringing affordable season-tickets to the masses and it would be great to see more clubs follow Bradford City’s example. Watching football in a full packed house is better than watching it in a half-empty ground which is what Bantams fans are regularly accustomed to seeing in Leagues One and Two.


Also, whilst it is important to note and agree that from the 1st of March to the end of April, the Clubs’ season ticket offers of £149, £169, and £199 represents good value for money, even at £199, when you look at the competitive prices of other Football Club season-ticket offers in our League and within the EFL as a whole. However, I also recognise that the fact that there is a willingness from supporters to donate to contribute their donations to meet the 20,000 target, and that is an achievement in itself, but, it shouldn’t have had to be that way.


If Bradford City had run the £149 season-ticket offer for a much longer period, offering more ways in which fans could make paying arrangements easier that don’t incur an increase in price through direct debit, and perhaps offer that fans can contribute more if they wanted to, then maybe, the 20,000 target would be reached sooner.


After the Club put out its season-ticket offer statement back at the end of February, we, welcomed the freezing the season-ticket price at £149, articulating the idea of extending the window of time in which fans could maximise to buy time to find the money to invest in that early bird offer.


Fans are the lifeblood of the game and when clubs needs something from us, it is often that our loyalty is exploited in some way or another.


Twenty’s Plenty

Nationally the FSF has teamed up with Virgin Media to make football more affordable for away fans in the Premiership. Last season following the £Twenty’s Plenty campaign, culminating in the fans walk-out at Anfield over increased season-ticket prices, the Premier League reached an agreement with FSF that match day prices would be no more than £30 for away fans. Recently Virgin Media agreed to refund £10 to every travelling away fan, which is, essentially keeping match day prices for away fans in the Premiership at £20. However, this is a limited period off between April and May.


Regionally the FSF wants the backing of Supporters Trusts to campaign around match day prices for away fans in the EFL by writing to EFL clubs in the region to support the £Twenty’s plenty campaign and reciprocal deals.


If we do get promoted to the Championship the away match day prices will be more expensive than what we have been used to in League One and Two. And we have a number of potentially mouth-watering fixtures. Leeds Utd failed to reach the Championships Play-Offs so we could be playing them and off course, Sheffield Utd. Huddersfield and Wednesday are in the mix for the Play Offs, but none of them may be successful in achieving promotion, and of course there’ll be Barnsley, so there maybe an opportunity on doing some joint work in bringing match day prices down.


Fans Summit

The Football Supporters’ Federation and Supporters Direct will host the joint annual Supporters Summit at St George's Park, Burton-Upon-Trent, on 1st and 2nd July 2017 - in partnership with the FA.


Supporters of a wide variety of clubs across the UK converge to discuss the important issues of how the game is run and how they impact on us, the committed real supporters who travel the length and breadth of the land to follow our teams trials and tribulations. But we don't just want to talk about these issues we want to do something about them, and that's the key.


Last year’s Supporters Summit, held in Wembley, included debates on the EFL's Whole Game Solution, the Twenty's Plenty campaign, diversity, away fans and much more.


The full programme of events for the 2017 summit is still being finalised.


Fans For Diversity & Bangla Bantams

Bangla Bantams are having a community day at Valley Parade on Sunday the 21st of May. The day will involve being on the pitch all day coaching and playing fun games with the younger community and 3 exhibition matches. So if you want to come and support the event please come and see what’s happening get to Valley Parade on Sunday 21st of May.


Consultation Surveys

As BCST is affiliated to the FSF, one of our requirements as an affiliated organisation is to consult with you on any national issues it campaigns on. The FSF campaigns on issues when there is a demand for it by fans, and one of the biggest of these campaigns that has had a lot of coverage in the national media is Safe Standing. We will be rolling out a short and easy survey on this for you to complete very shortly.


Also, we know how much Bradford City means to us all as a community and we are committed to consulting you on your general match day experiences from pies and beer to flags and the club shop. We will be putting something together to try out where you can discuss and raise ideas with us online in the near future.


Would you be a Supporters Trust Board member?

The Trust is always on the look out for new board members, so if you are a member of the Trust or not, and you feel that you agree with some of the things in this article, and / or you are familiar with the Supporters Trust movement and you care about the national supporter-based issues as well, and you have something to say, why not get in touch by email at contact@bcst.co.uk.


The Trust would like to thank Charles Hague for the photography at the Player of the Year Awards night.


Yours sincerely


Manny Dominguez


BCST Chair



By Bradford City Supporters Trust, May 18 2017 08:54PM

The last regular home league game of the season versus Wimbledon brought the curtain down on our 2016/17 Golden Goals competition.


Our attacking style of play this season has been encapsulated by the performances of full backs James Meredith and Tony McMahon, and it was two goals from Tony Mac that started and finished the 3-0 win over the Dons. A 29th minute penalty for a foul on Josh Cullen gave McMahon the chance to open the scoring, netting lucky competition entrant Heather Thompson the first £25 prize.


Mark Marshall unleashed a thundering near post shot from an acute angle to make it two nil on the stroke of half time before another Marshall run fed Tony McMahon to finish City’s third and final goal of the afternoon in the 85th minute, claimed by Jan Smithies.


Many thanks again to our competition entrants and to all our members for your support this season. We look forward to seeing you at Wembley on Saturday!


As per the rules of entry stated at http://www.bradfordcitygoldengoal.uk/rules/4589744575 prizes are awarded for the first and last goals of each regular home league game.


Adam Baker


BCST Secretary

By Bradford City Supporters Trust, May 18 2017 08:48PM

Since our last update of winners in our Golden Goal competition, we have seen April home victories against Walsall and Oxford both by the odd goal.


Neither fell into the category of a classic but hugely important nonetheless to provide a further cushion in the play-offs.


The game against Walsall saw City dominate for large spells including a handball decision turned down. Billy Clarke eventually and deservedly broke the deadlock in the 58th after a tremendous run and low cross from Mark Marshall fell into his path to fire home. As the first and last goal of the game the £50 prize goes to Alan Carling.


Following a comfortable away victory in the Bury sunshine, we welcomed Oxford United to Valley Parade. Having taken 3 points from the Bantams it the reverse fixture, a last minute postponement in the EFL Trophy and Oxford's subsequent progression after the rearranged game you could be forgiven for expecting a tough afternoon. It was certainly a tough watch in the opening 45 minutes, as Oxford spurned the clearest openings. Another Mark Marshall cross however proved the undoing of Oxford as a Charlie Wyke header landed to Nicky Law for a tap in. Despite the best efforts of Wyke, with an audacious attempt from the Midland Road touchline, Law's goal proved the only score of the game in the 61st minute. As an unclaimed minute the golden goals prize will go towards Trust projects and Charities.


Despite the Easter Monday defeat at Champions Sheffield United, we remain in a healthy league position entering the final two games of the regular season and looking for that one last point to secure a play-off finish. A tremendous achievement.


We look forward to welcoming AFC Wimbledon to Valley Parade on Saturday; opportunity for our Golden Goals entrants to have a chance of winning prizes for the final time this season.


As per the rules of entry stated at http://www.bradfordcitygoldengoal.uk/rules/4589744575 prizes are awarded for the first and last goals of each regular home game.


Adam Baker


BCST Secretary

By Bradford City Supporters Trust, Apr 11 2017 10:08AM


Dear Member,


Firstly, thank you for voting for your Young Player Of The Year from the five candidates that are eligible for the YPOTY Award this year – Devine, Cullen, Gilliead, Jones and Hiwula. The cut off point is 5pm on Wednesday April 19th, so for those of you who haven’t yet voted you still have time to get the votes in – just reply to this email with your chosen name.


Secondly, we would like to involve and consult with you more on matters that are club related and wider football matters that may have a direct or indirect impact on the way we watch football and how the game is changing.


Involving you, the members, is also about finding out what you want and making you feel involved where it isn’t just about attending our AGM once a year to give us the backing each year we need or voting for your Young Player of the Year once a year.


Being a member should be about much more than that. It’s about being involved in a democratic organisation that can play a role in working with our football club in a way that benefits the interests of both and having an influence in the direction of doing just that.


As an organisation affiliated to Supporters Direct, we have modelled our constitution (our policies) on theirs. Supporters Direct and the Supporters Trust movement came out of a need to start doing something about the number of football clubs in financial crisis. Northampton Town became symbolically the first Club with an influential Supporters Trust, formed in 1992, raising much-needed funds to keep them afloat. To fast forward to today, whilst it is important to remember that BCST emerged in 2002 from our own Club’s crises including in 2004, and now that we are not in any financial difficulty it is important note that we do want a positive relationship with our relatively now not so new to the job, owners. We have had a lot to celebrate on the pitch in recent years, and we hope will be celebrating at the end of this season going up through the Play-Offs.


Supporters Direct, whilst developing Supporters Trusts and assisting in the development of new ones, has cut it’s teeth working on Football Governance to lobby and negotiate in order to put rules and regulations in place for club owners and football clubs, so that they are accountable to the fans with commitment to constructive dialogue with the club’s fan base. Our colleagues in the FSF (Football Supporters Federation) are becoming more involved in this area whilst have had more expertise in campaigns that relate to fans experiences of the game with issues like; re-arrangement of Kick Off times due to TV, affordable football, Supporter Liaison Officers (SLO’s), ‘Bubble’ matches, EFL's Whole Game Solution, Safe standing, and so on.


The campaigns or surveys and survey reports from SD and FSF that are posted on our website and on our Facebook communications reflect the common concerns of fans, and how in many ways, the tops of the game are vastly removed from the interests of ordinary fans. It is often said that football is more than just a game, and it benefits the Trust and fans to know what is going on nationally.


Save the date: Supporters Summit 2017

The Football Supporters’ Federation and Supporters Direct will host the joint annual Supporters Summit at St George's Park, Burton-Upon-Trent, on 1st and 2nd July 2017 - in partnership with the FA.


The event brings fans together from across the UK, from clubs and supporter organisations, to debate the issues at the heart of the game.


Last year’s Supporters Summit, held in Wembley, included debates on the EFL's Whole Game Solution, the Twenty's Plenty campaign, diversity, away fans and much more.


If you would like to go or want to know more email us at contact@bcst.co.uk and I’ll get in touch.


Volunteers for the Burns Unit collection on April 22nd

The Burns Unit collection is scheduled for the game vs. Wimbledon on April 22nd. It's the usual deal for collecting - from c. 1.30 pm to c. 2.45pm on the day. If any member is interested in being a volunteer collector on the day, please reply to this email with your name, phone number and postal address. I will then pass on your details to the Remembrance Panel, who are organising the collection.


…And finally

We are looking for new Board members, so if you care about the future of the game – how the game is run as well as love your City team and you are passionate about the interests of the fans then drop us a return email via contact@bcst.co.uk.



Yours fraternally



Manny Dominguez


BCST Chair