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GIVING A VOICE TO BRADFORD CITY SUPPORTERS

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By Bradford City Supporters Trust, Jun 18 2019 09:58PM

Dear Members,


It is safe to say this season has been a non-starter. The tumultuous situation the Club found itself in the first half of the season had its long lasting detrimental impact – relegation back to league two and a disenchantment felt quite acutely amongst the fans, much more so than in previous seasons where the team has suffered on the pitch.


Of course, we have to breath a sigh of relief that we are not a Bolton Wonderers, Blackpool, Coventry or a Leyton Orient, but football clubs including the Bantams are never too far from trouble as the wealth in the beautiful game is becoming ever more polarised, and most football clubs don’t really make a profit, they just survive. Owner mismanagement is a concern for all of us.


We have a lot to be positive about

The Club’s rebuilding of it’s standing began in November 2018 when Julian Rhodes returned and Edin Rahich departed. Since then, we have had up to 14,000 Bantams fans take up it’s welcomed cheap season ticket offer for the new season, and the Club have made a commitment to reconnect with its fan base. The Supporters Board has been re-launched which we play a part in. We also have a direct channel with the Club. This began with Trust representatives meetings with Julian Rhodes, and now we have regular informal discussions with Glenn Ackroyd, the new fans-engagement officer. The benefit of these meetings is give a wider picture of the working relationships of our fellow Trusts and their clubs and the campaigns fans are taking up, as well as offer clarity issues and support for the Club, understanding its’ short and long term strategy where it benefits the fans and community.


We are pleased to see the Club committed to ‘Structured Dialogue’ in its relationship with the Supporters Board and working with the Trust. Structured Dialogue is a formal process of meaningful discussion between Club and supporters where shared information and consultation takes place. We are also pleased the Club is committed to looking at benefitting from Supporters Liaison Officers – which also comes under the Structured Dialogue remit.


The Supporters Trust is part of a wider network of other supporters Trusts as part of Supporters Direct and Football Supporters Federation. This arrangement means that these bodies have experiences of best practice for football clubs nationally; - what works best in Club/supporter relations, community work, policing, ways of improving the matchday experience and so on.


As the Club sees itself being a community club, we feel we are in a position of greater strength in being a source of influence. At the same time we also want to improve our communications with you and to consult more with you on what YOU WANT.


Next season we will be in League Two, but with a new influx of players over the summer, we hope we will have a team we can all be proud of. And with a Club that is committed in valuing its’ supporters, we hope we can have a brighter future as a Club and community going forward.


Yours sincerely


Manny Dominguez


By Bradford City Supporters Trust, Mar 8 2019 04:59PM

City fans! Can you help?


A group of 7 fans from different teams from across the UK have got together to raise awareness of Alzheimer’s/Dementia. The cold hard fact is this disease has now taken over as the biggest killer in the UK.


Although we are on a mission to raise funds for this charity, we also had an idea to get a unique collection of football ‘memory items’ from across the land.


The Alzheimer’s Society symbol is a ‘Forget-me-not’. We are keen to get a collection of items together to put on display for the world to see as a dedication to Alzheimer-affected people, their families and carers. The local Alzheimer’s Society (based at Barclays House, 51 Bishopric, Horsham RH12 1QJ) would appreciate your support.


The items would not be for sale and would be based in the UK for view as a museum piece etc.


Could you therefore send us an item that means something to Reds fans? Something with a story behind it that could go on display. This maybe a scarf, an old photo of Broadfield Stadium, even an old programme from years gone by.


We have already received contributions from several supporters clubs and trusts across the land. This might take some time but the idea is to receive memory items from all 92 league clubs’ supporters. I have written to 30 clubs so far and received 12 football-related memory items for this unique collection, with the others considering. Only another 62 teams to write to!


If you would like to help with a contribution please use the contact details below. We will keep you up to date every step of the way. Just receiving one old programme would make a massive difference.


If you are able to help at all, please contact Terry Marsh 07850 066532;

terry.marsh@telent.com, 20 Regent Square Belvedere, Kent DA17 6EP.

By Bradford City Supporters Trust, Mar 6 2019 11:41PM

Dear Members and City supporters,


First of all the Trust would like to give a warm welcome to Gary Bowyer as the new City manager and his assistant Andy Todd. We are pleased that they are relishing the unenviable challenge of giving all they can to instil the Bantams with a fighting spirit to try and avoid relegation with 11 games left.


It is no understatement to say we have all felt frustrated and down hearted with the Bantams current form. Many of us were surprised with the news of David Hopkins’ resignation on Monday 25th February after the disappointing 3-2 defeat at the Bescott Stadium, losing to a fellow struggling side who wanted the win much more than us. We can all agree that this slump flows from the tumultuous period the Club found itself in during the time of Edin Rahic’s horrendous mismanagement and indeed Gary Bowyer will be manager number 4 since Stuart McCall departed last February. Although he is with us initially until the end of the season, we would welcome a long term approach to the situation in the way managers are hired and fired in the modern game. Such an approach means providing the best possible support to the manager in a way that provides long-term stability for the Club which then means giving a manager time to build the team over a sustained period of time and this would alleviate the pressure to sack even in a rough period of poor results. History has proven that it will take a club longer to build having a short-term approach. Phil Parkinson has been the most successful manger in recent history and that was no overnight dream team he built. It took patience and time and that needs to be built into any long-term strategy.


Furthermore, we would like to give thanks and appreciation to Julian Rhodes who felt it necessary to come in and attempt to turn things around and it is with great appreciation that he has re-introduced the cheap season-tickets back to £150 and a longer period in which fans can take advantage of buying them at this price than in the previous season.


As we can all recognise, there are many uncertainties – the most immediate one is we do not know at this stage what division we will be playing in next season and there is a a bigger question mark as to whether Julian will extend his temporary tenure at the Club. All this may well depend on whether the German owners decide to put the Club up for sale. Indeed, doing this does not necessarily guarantee a buyer will necessarily come to fruition in the short term and of course there is always the lease payments of the ground to Gordon Gibb still going on in the background.


Since the creation of the Premiership and the re-branding of football through the massive investment of TV money and all-seater stadium requirements in the top two tiers, the game has changed so much. We have seen a widening wealth gap mirroring society where we have a few rich, top teams and the rest of the clubs struggling to compete in an ever more demanding and volatile situation as the cost of survival goes up for most clubs. Sky and BT Sport paid a record £5.136bn for live Premier League TV (PL) rights from 2016 to 2019, and from 2013 to 2016 the Premier League generated over 3 billion pounds in revenue from its marketing of TV broadcasting rights per year. The current £5.136bn deal represents a 70% increase. At the same time the EFL secured a £595million five-year deal from the start of next season 2019/20. It is a 35% increase on their last deal but it is considerably smaller that the PL slice of the TV investment in comparison, and the impact of that, further down the EFL divisions means an even smaller slice of the gravy train and indeed parachute payments.


What the TV money investment shows, is a disproportionate distribution of wealth where the top clubs get the lions share. It is in other words a lack of a redistribution of wealth to create healthier competition. This means that today, certainly for the bigger clubs at least, gate receipts and income from advanced sales in season ticket sales is no longer the most important income. That comes from TV and other sources such as the success of the brand and sponsorship deals internationally, but for smaller clubs, survival means that it does rely heavily on season-ticket income and gate receipts. We, the fans are still the largest investors and therefore are a big influence on the direction of our football clubs and at Bradford City, this is no different.


The Trust believes all fans should rally behind the Club and the team (whatever we personally think of the current crop of players) for the survival of the Bantams and the hope to stay in League One. On match days we should do all that we can to encourage the management and the team to put in a real effort in the final run of the season.


And finally, the Trust encourages supporters to renew your season tickets and back the team come what may next season. We believe that fans, in our eyes, are a vital ingredient that makes our football clubs what they are and therefore as City fans we should have a greater say at Bradford City. Being the largest group of supporters and long suffering investors collectively, the Trust will always strive to engage with our Club and offer a constructive way forward to get fans more involved and valid points listened to in Bradford City’s deliberations going forward.


Yours sincerely



Manny Dominguez

BCST Chair


By Bradford City Supporters Trust, Jan 21 2019 08:43PM

We are looking forward to getting stuck into this year, so here is a sketch

of what we are looking to do.


It was extremely disappointing to watch our team fizzle out in the first half against what appeared to be an ordinary Southend side that included former City player Timothée Dieng, and being one goal ahead in les than a minute. But City being City huffed and puffed without any edge about them allowed Southend to take the advantage and score again. The second half saw more of the same and after seeing Southend’s forth goal go in it prompted many of us to get up and head for the exits. It appears normal service has resumed and the positive results throughout December and early January are nothing but a fading memory. Let’s hope David Hopkin can inject a new dose of fight in the team to ensure we can pull ourselves away from the drop zone towards safety.


Off the pitch, we are still intent renewing our relationship with the Club by seeking a constructive dialogue with Julian Rhodes and his team, and we have sent Julian a letter expressing this. Please see below for the letter image.


Issues such as the Club’s finances, the leasing of the ground to Gordon Gibb, and issues of the match day experience such as safe standing, season-tickets and equality and diversity within the game and our community are very important to us and we would like to assist the club in providing ideas that can develop a greater kudos amongst the fans and the Club which we feel will benefit both parties. Indeed we have sent a letter to the Club addressed to Julian Rhodes requesting this.


In terms of community activities we intend to be involved in the Kick It Out campaign challenging discrimination, in all it’s forms and also promoting inclusion and diversity in the game such as promoting reciprocal deals as part of the Away Fans Matter campaign on match days but for both home and away fans in the form of cheap match day tickets or free away travel, with the idea of encouraging other clubs to participate and do the same for us and theirs. We want to raise the profile of food banks on matchdays as other Trust’s and supporters groups have already begun doing. And we also support the idea of the Club having SLO’s (Supporter Liaison Officers) too that are intended to build bridges between the club and its fans in a variety of ways. We want to support the Club where we can and work with them in developing these ideas so that they can be realised.


And as well as promoting women at the game and women’s football we want to support football in the community with the long term aim of creating a Supporters Trust hub.


If you would like to become a Trust Board member and be part of developing the Trust in moving it forward please let us know through going to our website or emailing us at contact@bcst.co.uk.


Yours sincerely


Manny Dominguez


BCST Chair

By Bradford City Supporters Trust, Dec 19 2018 10:49AM

Bradford City Supporters' Trust 2018 AGM


Thank you to all who took the time on a cold Monday night to attend our annual Annual General Meeting last week, 10th December 2018. The AGM presented a number of regular business items which must be covered in order to meet our regulatory obligations.


A copy of the Meeting Minutes are available upon request for the reference of you, our members.

Members will have recieved an email of tthis with the attachment.


Whilst a number of motions were voted upon and agreed in an advisory capacity, Trust Rules say that '20' is the magic number for our AGM to be quorate, as we fell below that we must sign off the recommendations made at the AGM at the earliest possible opportunity.


This will therefore take place prior to the upcoming home game versus Scunthorpe from 1pm to 1-30pm on Saturday 22nd December 2018 at the Midland Hotel, in accordance with Trust Rules and to enable our statutory Financial Conduct Authority Return to be made.


We welcome any City fan wishing to attend and we would be grateful for your intention in advance, whilst only BCST members remain eligible to vote.


If you would like to have a drink with us afterwards we will move to the bar...


Bradford City Supporters' Trust Open Meeting

Proceeding our AGM on 10th December 2018, BCST also provided opportunity for Supporters and Members to join us in person to discuss, in further detail, what has been an unprecedented period in recent history for us all as City fans and our Club.


We welcomed Special Guest Speakers Deborah Dilworth (Supporters' Direct Network Manager to the Premier League and Football League) and Roger Ellis of the Sky Blues Trust (Coventry City), who provided an invaluable insight into the parallels and experiences which could be drawn from similar challenging circumstances for fans & Trust's at other Club's.


Whilst we look to the future with positivity, all present took a great deal from examples of encouraging not just the important atmosphere of "structured dialogue" but engagement with you, BCST members, as we enter a new Chapter for our Club and endeavor to emerge stronger for the experiences of the last 12 months.


As part of this, we would continue to actively encourage BCST members who may be interested in joining the Trust Board to get in touch, which will enable us to reach out further - whether you have an interest in Social Events, Media, Community Initiatives or Business with City at heart we would be very pleased to hear from you.


As always a tough run of fixtures lies ahead, but a run of fixtures we can all look forward to over the festive period - the main reason we all follow our Club, to enjoy watching our team with fellow fans, friends and family; especially at this time of year.


For those unable to attend our short meeting on Saturday may we take this opportunity to wish you all a Merry Christmas and very Happy New Year.


Yours in City,


Bradford City Supporters' Trust Board


By Bradford City Supporters Trust, Dec 9 2018 12:14PM

Dear Members,


Thank you for your support in these changing and testing times for all of us.


We would like to explain that the Trust, is a community society that is part of a wider body of football supporters held together through a national organisation that has the best interests of football supporters at it's core.


Supporters Direct and Football Supporters Federation that we affiliate to have now merged but will remain separate entities for the foreseeable future. The unified national supporters movement and supporters trusts share principles that put fans first through their policies that we adopt every year.


Structured Dialogue is a key policy that we have always adopted as a way of working with the clubs that we love and support as a way of achieving the best for YOU, the fans, whether it is to improve the match day experience or ownership of a club.


At our meeting tomorrow, Monday 10th December, we will have Deborah Dilworth (EFL Network Manager) from Supporters Direct, up from London, so if you would like to find out more please come along.