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Monday 15th September 2008, 7.30 p.m.
Falkirk Community Stadium




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Minutes of the Bairns Trust Meeting
18th August 2008 at Falkirk Stadium

Present: (15).

Committee (11) - S Jackson, B Guthrie, P Jack, J Gardiner, M McIntyre, S Monfries, T Paterson, R Stirling, Jnr., S Wilson, B Anderson, F Caldwell.

Members (4) - J Dick, D Robertson, I Sneddon, M White. M Dickins

Non-Members (0).

1)   Chairpersons Opening Remarks.

Meeting was introduced by Vice Chairperson B Guthrie. Hosted by Chairperson S Jackson.
Minutes were taken by Treasurer P Jack in the absence of Secretary M Anderson.

2)   Apologies. – None.

3)   Matters Arising. –

May Minutes. None.

June Minutes –

Former Players Association (FPA) letter was discussed. Expected to join Trust.
Stand Up For Falkirk (SUFC) wished a couple of comments removed from the Minutes recorded. Duly accepted and actioned on 01/07/08.

4)   Minutes Of Previous Meetings – May & June.

May - Proposed B Guthrie. Seconded S Wilson.
June - Proposed S Monfries. Seconded D Robertson.

Treasurer recommended future paper copies of Minutes to be restricted to 2. All Minutes can be viewed online.

5)   Secretary's Report (Covered 2 month period 17/06/08 – 17/08/08).

In the absence of Secretary, Treasurer covered electronic correspondence:

Only 86 emails have been sent over past months to members of Committee. Highlights:
- Supporters Direct (SD) kept Trust busy over close season.
- SD conference for local Trusts. Hibernian’s Easter Road Stadium, Sun 06/09/08, 1pm-4pm. Trust Committee names and numbers to be collated after tonight’s meeting.
- SD Model rules survey. Good ones adopted v bad ones. BairnsTrust to still respond.
- SD Training for Secretaries. Topics/ideas/concerns sought. BairnsTrust to still respond.
- SD membership survey now launched. BairnsTrust current and former Members circulated.
- SD seeking good idea articles for their own electronic newsletters.
- 2008/09 BairnsTrust Committee contact details collated and circulated.
- Treasurer compiled June Minutes and circulated.
- Treasurer assisted Membership Secretary in setting up 2008/09 Member’s database.
- Treasurer assisted IT Team with Newsletters # 52 & # 53. Now fully handed over to IT Team.
- Dutch tour memorabilia collected and available at short notice for sale on return to Trust stall.
- Full stock check of stall undertaken. All old programmes now listed electronically.
- Clydesdale Bank Score Predictor BairnsTrust mini-league set up by IT Team.

Question from floor – Raised by Falkirk FC (FFC) Board. Ability to pay membership by standing order. Has been considered before. Could be done if fee kept constant. Missed opportunity to send out form with Trust application form with FFC season tickets. May do next year. Paypal facility is available at our website.

In the absence of Secretary, Chairperson covered paper correspondence:

- Parcel from Financial Services Authority (FSA) finally ratifying Trust’s 2 constitutional amendments from April 2007 AGM after 3 attempts and 16 months. Sealed 09/07/08.
-  Parcel from FSA dated 09/06/08 rejecting Trust’s Independent Examination for year ended 30/09/07, produced by 30/04/08 deadline, as constitutional amendment to change from Annual Audit to Independent Examiner not received. Also not signed by Registered Auditor and omits reference to Industrial and Provident Societies Act 1965 and the Friendly and Industrial and Provident Societies Act 1968 in Auditors Report. See above. Treasurer will liaise with SD then FSA as if Independent Examination constitutional change accepted in time none of the above applies.
- SD Membership renewal application form received dated 16/07/08 for 2008/09. To now be completed by Treasurer by 09/09/08.
- Copies of latest SD magazine received and made available to tonight’s attendees.
- DVD of Dutch game v SC Leeuwarden received with thanks from RPPR Media. Trust to take order for copies. Copyright permitted.
- Letter from Czech Republic football fan seeking club badges read out. Chairman has replied and donated badges and FFC programmes with thanks.

Chairman mentioned that 2 Sheffield Wednesday supporters are travelling to our home game v Inverness CT to make presentation to L Bullen. Trust to offer Boardroom Experience in return for mention at presentation photos/articles.

Question from floor – Target temporary stand for membership? Have discussed before along with a stall, but lack Committee/volunteers to man. Will do sometime. U-16 Christmas party?
Question from floor – FFC teams unsponsored that Trust could cover? Only the Ladies team. May require £1,000/year.
Question from floor – Membership status? Membership secretary covered. Need more. Leaflet at games? Public meeting? L Bullen/N McCann pro-Trusts at previous clubs. Recruit them? Recruit A MacDonald/S Lovell for PR? Photo with Trust form/banner? Need club officials and players on board. Press to back Trust? Public address announcement? 3,500 Trust application forms sent with FFC season ticket books. Poor return rate. Face to face gets better response. Dundee United only has 250 members but turnover £25,000/year. Trust banners to be moved from Away stand to Main stand concourse entrance. Buy more banners? Trust IT team to source cheaper.
Question from floor – FFC shop space for Trust. Could slip Trust forms in with purchases.
Question from floor – Price charged for kids strips!

6)   Treasurer's Report (Covered 2 month period 17/06/08 – 17/08/08).


New season subscriptions now arriving.
66 members in first month of subscription period.
16 Sharesave members, generating £198/month.
Grateful donations with new season subscriptions now arriving.
Dutch programme pack great success at first available game v Rangers. £10 refunded to Chairman for buying additional copies in Holland.
Annual Bank Interest received.
M White latest book selling well. Funds due to M White. Trust receiving generous commission.


Last instalment of IT costs paid. The only outgoing over close season.
However major cheques still outstanding although posted to suppliers:
- £1,250 for 1,000 FFC shares purchased in name of BairnsTrust.
- £1,250 for 5 lots of 200 FFC shares purchased in name of individual Sharesavers.
- £500 for another 2 lots of 200 FFC shares purchased in name of individual Sharesavers.
- £264 Trust sponsorship of B O’Brien boots.
- £250 for 1 lot of 200 FFC shares to be purchased. Missing member not responding. If anyone knows whereabouts of R King from New Carron Village, please can they advise Trust.
- £235 for 5 murals commissioned. Trust to own 3 to be used at upcoming fundraisers. 2 others are private sales. Monies to be recovered.
- £200 Trust sponsorship of 2 youth team players shirts. E Eklund and S Murdoch.
- £123 printing of 3,500 Trust 2008/09 application forms.

Balance at present mentioned. Meets long-term liabilities, but now little to spare.

Other issues Treasurer involved in:
- Fundraising ideas over close season: account now operational and good commissions to date.
  Recycling of mobile phones and printer cartridges application pack received by IT team.
  Junior Bairns £50 grant application completed.
  Unity Lottery not progressed.
  Co-op Dividend scheme not progressed.
  Sponsor a Goal not progressed.
- First Corporate Sponsor of season signed – Barbers Pole of Bo’Ness and Falkirk. IT team have designed their website as part of sponsorship.
- Norwegian Members signed at Rangers game.
- Trinidadian Members being progressed.
- Photos of Dutch Tour submitted by Trust Member I Sneddon with thanks. Now on Trust site.
- Charity stall in Falkirk town centre mentioned. Opportunity to raffle all signed strips/balls held.
- Thanks to FFC for being selected to film for Falkirk TV match v QPR and Dutch Tour games.

Congratulations to Trust Committee Member R Stirling, Jnr. on becoming matchday programme co-ordinator. Successful sales to date. Trust will benefit as the principal programme seller inside the stadium.

Chairman mentioned new contacts sourced over close season:
- Stoke City scout J Blackhall.
- FIFA Licensed agent used to arrange Dutch Tour J Wolte. Season worth of FFC programmes to be sent by Chairman as token.
Chairman still has private old FFC programme stock available at negotiable rates.

7)   Social Convenor's Report (Covered 2 month period 17/06/08 – 17/08/08).

Merchandising –
Has seen a change in attitude by FFC after many false starts. FFC willing to help fund first order. Ensure stocks always available. Potential lines discussed. FFC will handle all transactions, e.g. Credit cards. Senior Bairns can have opportunity to join Trust merchandising. Printers in FFC shop discussed. Meeting with E May/R Wilson not averse to Trust producing youth team branded wear. Image rights? Can advertise firstly and take orders to ensure no overproduction. Will only progress obtaining samples if receive written terms and conditions from FFC. Trust to sell FFC products from Trust matchday stall. FFC willing to assist by providing further store cupboard and refurbishment of Trust stall area.

Show Racism the Red Card (SRTRC) –
Fortnight of action this year will be at Aberdeen home game on Sat 18/10/08. More involvement with local schools and Commission for Racial Equality (CRE). School parade. 10-20 pupils from each local school. Painting of posters as part of educational campaign. Ethnic band. Schools can’t afford from own budget. Trust/FFC/CRE to assist financially. Hoping not big outlay for Trust. Tie in with Trusts new recycle project. Schools/pubs to collect old mobile phones/toner cartridges. Hand to Trust. Trust to claim recycle funds. Return to schools ring-fenced for SRTRC projects. Potential sums over £1,000. To be weighed up with storage facilities required.

Quiz Night –
Return of the successful Trust Quiz Night at Castings Club. Last Monday of September, 29/09/08. 1 week after September Trust meeting. Booking to be confirmed. Same format as before. Raffle prizes required.

Adam Quest –
Return of the successful entertainer to Castings Club. Friday 24/10/08. 4 days after October Trust meeting. Booking confirmed. Poster and tickets to be prepared. Minimal expenditure. Entertainer’s fee quoted. Raffle prizes required.

Question from floor – Plaques for a fans wall in 3rd stand? Trust to possibly organise.

Other advertising ideas discussed – Hibees Bounce part advertising of flag. Centre circle banner. Cost over £1,000. Both Dee4Life and Dunfermline Trusts do similar.

8)   Board Report (Covered 2 month period 17/06/08 – 17/08/08. 2 Board Meetings).

1st Board Meeting (26/06/08) –

Trust Rep on Board again discussed re FFC AGM resolution 2. 3 year cycle ends 2011. 2010 elections will be ok. No form of words yet received by Trust. Since received by shareholders.
FFC share price held at £1.25 for all applicants, including FFC Board of Directors.
FFC EGM possibly to be held as one afternoon meeting along with Major Shareholders Group (MSG) then possibly BairnsTrust thereafter.
New Stand. 2nd Trust Rep gave summary of previous day’s Council Public Meeting. 30-week build commencing August. Since postponed again.
C Gowans pavilion at Stirling University now operational.

2nd Board Meeting (22/07/08) –

Kier Homes Ltd no longer able to fulfil sponsorship.
Share transfer discussed.
Scotland U21 v Slovenia U21 match arranged for Thu 04/09/08 by FFC not Falkirk Community Stadium Ltd (FCSL).
C Gowans pavilion at Stirling University to be opened by Scotland Manager G Burley. G Craig in regular contact with Gowans family. All claims now settled.
Old Firm 5% ticket charge. FFC rejected. Roundly praised for stance taken. Aberdeen has since compromised giving discount to their home support. Dundee Utd went with charge. FFC obtained names and addresses of all Rangers ticket sales via partnership with Falkirk Herald. Could send out FFC promotional literature. Celtic could be more difficult to administer. Local Police Commander happy with FFC procedure.
FCSL tender for refit closed 08/08/08. Contractors on site within 4 weeks.

9)   Stadium Update – Stand Up For Falkirk.

3rd stand commencement delayed. Tenders way higher than expected.
Health and Safety Executive report was not attached to tender proposal.
Should still be able to progress and be completed by end of season.
Falkirk District Council (FDC) meeting held today with presentation to Councillors. Proposal came to FDC only last Friday.
Trust Chairman held meeting with FFC officials tonight to seek FFC views.
4th stand to be discussed late September by FDC Public meeting. Probably last meeting on topic. SUFC will be in attendance.
Credit crunch/land values/retail potential all now more relevant after so long.

There then followed further debate not to be minuted.
FFC currently pay FCSL for use of Boardroom for monthly meetings. To be vacated by 11pm.

10)   BairnsTrust Boardroom Experience 1st Round Draw.

Inverness CT, Sat 30/08/08 – 2 Sheffield Wednesday supporters are travelling to this game to make presentation to L Bullen. Trust to offer Boardroom Experience in return for mention at presentation photos/articles.

Heart of Midlothian, Sat 13/09/08 – Winner of ShireTrust Quiz Night auction prize.

Hamilton Academical, Sat 27/09/08 – N Baillie, Edinburgh. Since declined.

Aberdeen, Sat 18/10/08 – No prize. This will be SRTRC day and all Trust Committee will be heavily involved around stadium that match.

Reserves in order – J Lachlan, Crieff, The Barbers Pole, J Malone, Polmont.

Recommendation to carry forward until next meeting the draw for £100 voucher prize.

11)   A.O.C.B.

- Trust shareholding in FFC confirmed as 8th biggest. 1.8% short of MSG status. Trusts are permitted by Constitution to borrow funding from sponsors or receive loans. Could well do to boost holding.
- Proposal to run Trust car raffle. Trust Committee will decide. Progress by obtaining terms and conditions. The Mod doing similar at the moment up to October. Big commitment. Seek volunteers for major selling blitz. CRE to get involved?

12)   Date Of Next Meeting.

Monday 15th September 2008 at 7.30pm in the Warm-Up Area of Falkirk Stadium.


Everyone is welcome and can participate in discussion, but only members are allowed to vote on any issue.