AFT Chairman’s Update #16                

Plymouth Foodbank Appeal

As in previous years the Argyle Fans’ Trust will again be supporting Plymouth Foodbank in their mission to ‘helping local people in crisis’.  Donations can be brought to our table outside the Devonport End this Saturday from 1.45 until 2.45 p m Please do support this local charity.

Alternatively the address for donations at the Centre is 28 Manor Street, Stonehouse, Plymouth  PL1 1TW They are open Monday – Friday 9.00am – 4pm for donations or you can take them to North Plymouth community Church, Plymbridge Road, PL6 7LF on Tuesday and Thursdays from 10.00 – 12.00.

Meeting with Martyn Starnes and Jon Back    

Bob Foale, the AFT Chair, met with Martyn Starnes, the club CEO, and Jon Back, the Club Secretary and Head of Operations, on the 23rd November 2016. We discussed the recent breakdown of communication between PAFC and the AFT and resolved to look at positive ways in which to support our future working relationship.

Bob brought up an issue raised on behalf of disabled members who had to undergo an initial assessment of their needs. It was asked if a more sympathetic approach could be taken. Martyn agreed to look into this.

The issue of ‘safe standing’ and rail seats was discussed and this included the potential pros and cons of the initiative recently taken by Celtic Football Club.

While a number of positives were outlined, some concerns were aired regarding the business case of installing rail seats in stadiums where capacity is not regularly reached, particularly given that supporters have historically expected to pay less to stand.

Martyn explained that the Board of Plymouth Argyle remain interested in the development of rail seats, although also noted that whilst safe standing remains unlawful within the majority of football grounds in England (including Home Park) that there could be no firm commitment.”

Jon noted that ‘supporting the club’ does not feature within the AFT’s stated objectives.  The Chair agreed to review this with his Board.

The role of a Fans’ Trust was discussed. The chair reiterated that one of the Trust’s main objectives was to be ‘the democratic and representative voice of the supporters of the Club’ as opposed to a fund raising supporters’ branch. However the AFT would look to maintain and build on   its past commitment to supporting the club, starting this season with sponsoring a player’s away strip.