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Monday 11th November 2008, 7.30 p.m.
Falkirk Community Stadium




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Minutes of the Bairns Trust Meeting
20th October 2008 at Falkirk Stadium

Present: (15).

Committee (10) - S Jackson, B Guthrie, P Jack, J Gardiner, M McIntyre, S Monfries, T Paterson, R Stirling, Jnr., S Wilson, B Anderson.

Members (5) - J Dick, B Robertson, I Sneddon, G Williamson, M. Dickins.

Non-Members (0).

1)   Chairperson’s Opening Remarks.

Meeting was hosted by Chairperson S Jackson who welcomed all attendees.
Minutes were taken by Treasurer P Jack in the absence of a Secretary. Seeking replacement applicants.

2)   Apologies. – F Caldwell, L Wilson.

3)   Matters Arising.

Covers over seats – Now better. Trust Chairman has spoken with Cleaning Manager. They will continue with sheets.

Celtic letter – Reply to Trust letter of concerns following last visit to Celtic Park received and read to Members tonight. Similar reply to one Falkirk FC (FFC) received. Matter now ended.

BairnsTrust printer proposal – Sheet of quotes circulated by Trust IT team. Decision taken not to progress.

BairnsTrust IT Bebo/Myspace proposal – Been investigated by Trust IT team. Decision taken not to progress.

Other matters – Covered later as agenda points.

4)   Minutes of Previous Meetings –

All Minutes can be viewed online prior to meetings, reducing need for future paper copies.
Proposed S Monfries. Seconded B Robertson.

5)   Secretary's Report.

In the absence of a Secretary, Treasurer covered electronic correspondence:

Numerous emails have been sent over past month to members of Committee. Highlights:
- Membership cards now produced, available for collection and distribution has commenced.
- Supporters Direct (SD) Secretaries Training. Trust unable to send a delegate to either session on Sun 05/10/08, Sun 02/11/08 or Sun 30/11/08 due to currently not having a Secretary. SD fully aware of this. Chairman re-iterated need to have one in place urgently. Trust IT to send out correspondence to membership on matter.
- SD enquired about how our 2007 Independent Examination went, knowing the problems encountered. Matter now finally concluded for 2007.
- Email to membership seeking raffle prizes and/or memorabilia for upcoming social events.
- List of volunteers compiled from database for upcoming Show Racism the Red Card (SRTRC.)
- Treasurer compiled September Minutes and tonight’s Agenda. Both circulated tonight. Apologies for wrong date on Agenda.
- 2 x SD monthly electronic Newsletters circulated to Trust Committee.
- Trust IT team sent out electronic newsletter #55.
- Trust IT has compiled an online Boardroom Experience Questionnaire. Confidentiality issues?

Raffle prizes compiled from Trust stock for upcoming Trust Quiz Night, A Quest Night, local Scout troop Race Night and TOA Taxis Race Night supporting our community involvement.

In the absence of Secretary, Chairperson covered paper correspondence:

- Parcel and letter from friends at v v Buitenpost who hosted SC Heerenveen v Falkirk on 2008 Dutch tour. Pack of programmes, posters and unissued ticket stubs for Trust fundraising. Received with thanks. To be reciprocated. Chairman to progress. Large postage costs anticipated.
- Trust Vice Chairman received annual Financial Services Authority (FSA) invoice. Again addressed to a former Trust Committee Member despite FSA being advised on numerous occasions to amend. Treasurer to send cheque and again instruct to alter details. Since done.
- 2 x identical C:DS questionnaire letters re Co-operative sector database. To be reviewed. Since done. IT team recommend not to be progressed.
- Celtic FC’s reply to FFC letter of concerns following last visit to Celtic Park received and read to Members tonight. Similar reply to one Trust received. Matter now ended with Celtic FC. Trust Chairman to further liaise with G Craig.

Treasurer highlighted that due to lack of volunteers, Minutes for tonight will not be compiled within usual timeframe due to being on holiday for next two weeks.

6)   Treasurer's Report.

Financial year end passed on 30/09/08. Treasurer to now compile Independent Examination in time for Trust AGM in April 2009.


13 members in third month of subscription period. New season subscriptions now slowing.
2nd and 3rd Corporate sponsor renewals of season – BRS Ltd and J Bennie Electrical Ltd.
1 concession.
16 Sharesave members, generating circa £200/month.
Grateful donations with new season subscriptions now slowing.
DVD sales continue. And old programme sales still selling well.
Trust Football Quiz Night healthy profit made.
M White latest book selling well. Latest funds paid to author. Trust receiving generous fee. fund growing. Balance mentioned. Not cashed yet. Need more to signup.
PayPal account cashed in time for Trust financial year end.


Small postage and stationery costs for EBay sales and member correspondence. Red card bought for upcoming SRTRC. FFC to assist financially?
Annual Trust Membership £100 prize draw FFC vouchers purchased. Draw made later tonight.
£50 SD annual membership cheque settled. Sent by deadline.
DHL Football tournament £50 pitch hire/sponsorship offset with private Trust mural purchase.
TOA Taxis Race Night £30 sponsorship and raffle prize given to Vice Chairman to pass on.
Cash taken from bank account to cover upcoming A Quest Night. To be recovered on night.

£250 for 1 lot of 200 FFC shares still to be purchased. Missing member not responding. If anyone knows whereabouts of R King from New Carron Village, please can they advise Trust. Announcement broadcast at game v Hearts on Sat 13/09/08 and newsletters seeking member.

£235 for 5 murals commissioned still to be cashed. Trust to own 3 to be used at upcoming fundraisers. 2 others are private sales. Monies to be recovered. 1 since received. 1 outstanding.

Healthy profit in period as a result of above. Balance at present mentioned. No longer meets long-term liabilities. An A Quest Night profit should redress.

Other issues Treasurer involved in:
- Paypal memberships received with thanks. This medium now proving popular.
- Paypal account cashed for financial year end.
- Programme sales via EBay for QPR and Rangers games made good sums.
- Online programme stock list updated.
- BairnsAid Annual Accounts completed.
- Trust Independent Examination for year ended 30/09/08 now to be worked on by Treasurer.
- SD advised of bank account fraud on an English Trust. BairnsTrust account is secure.

Mention made of Vice Chairman’s excellent FFC programme articles.
BairnsTrust own B Allison shirt from A Laurie Testimonial. Removed from OneF online auction.

Question from floor – Any membership cheques outstanding. Timing of receipt of cheques sometimes means delay in banking on an available Saturday morning. All received cheques banked in time for financial year end.

7)   Social Convenor's Report.

Show Racism the Red Card (SRTRC) – Fortnight of action this year continues. Red Card Scotland and SPL agreed to make Sat 01/11/08 the day to mark event v Dundee Utd. Central Racial Society Educational Committee (CRSEC) willing to provide volunteers of many nationalities to assist with distribution of promotional materials. FFC not happy that Trust were proceeding with own event during fortnight of action v Aberdeen. Red Card was happy. Trust was not informed of above SPL action. FFC had 14 days to inform Trust. Hearts did major event last Fri with MSPs. Aberdeen event PP. 4 new banners purchased by Trust and already in place for event on 01/11/08. MSPs and team captains to read out statements at Dundee Utd match kick-off and wear SRTRC t-shirts. R Wilson and G Craig working over past months as part of educational campaign. Trust/FFC/CRSEC to assist financially? Sum pledged by FFC. Social Convenor compiling grant application claim with Red Card Scotland. May get half claim. Last year got a lot of promotional materials in good faith. Last year’s remaining stock passed to Social Convenor tonight. Not a one day event. All year round SRTRC promotion with schools. FFC keen to let local minorities into games ahead of new stand going up. St Mirren allows 200-300 seats for similar idea. Get new supporters a feel of FFC. Tour of stadium? Norwegian trust members to spread word?

TOA Taxis Race Night – Sat 01/11/08. £4/ticket. Trust IT team have compiled advert for programme. Trust sponsorship £30 for one race. Trust raffle prize donated. Social Convenor attended event as part of our community involvement. All funds to Strathcarron Hospice.

HMV Staff Auction – BairnsTrust Boardroom Experience auction prize raised £120. Social Convenor attended event as part of our community involvement. £1,500 raised for Clic Sergeant.

Bruce Tait Associates – Potential Trust sponsor. Trains fundraisers and advises on big charity events. Can obtain large companies to sponsor events. Not small scale.

Games Night – Bainsford Bowling Club. Friday 21/11/08. Booking confirmed. £100 prize. Leaflets and posters done by Trust IT team. Can pay on the night. Lots of teams interested already. Raffle and auction prizes required.

Mini Golf Day – Proposed Pitch and Putt day at Callander Park in summer?

Go Karting – Proposed Trust Corporate sponsors event. Local karting centre literature read out.

Christmas/New Year Auction – 8-10 good items. Celtic and Kilmarnock games to bid. Website, postcard, stall bids, etc. List of potential auction items read out.

Children In Need Quiz Night – Castings Club. Monday 03/11/08, 7-7.30pm. Booking confirmed. Same format as before. General knowledge quiz. Regular quiz teams will attend. £10/team of 4. £100 prize. Leaflets and posters done by Trust IT team. Can pay on the night. Raffle and auction prizes required. No Trust shirts/balls to be used. Trust to assist Castings in arranging event but all funds to Children In Need.

Car Raffle Draw – Joint promotion and workload with CRSEC. Social Convenor to get final, written quote from local garage for car purchase.

Blues Brothers/Flash Harry at Falkirk Town Hall – Potential events next summer. Joint promotion and workload with CRSEC.

BairnsTrust Banners – 4 now in place. A4 designs shown to meeting tonight.

Corporate Members List – A list of potential Corporate sponsor targets was mentioned with best Trust Committee Members to progress also highlighted.

Adam Quest – Return of the successful entertainer to Castings Club. Friday 24/10/08. Booking confirmed. Poster and tickets prepared by Trust IT team. Tickets £8, including buffet. Raffle prizes required. Performer is recovering from throat infection. Backup act mentioned in case at reduced cost. Trust Committee Members to buy ticket even if unable to attend?

Regular Small Community Events – Trust to back as many local events as feasible as part of our community involvement.

Question from floor – Stock of red cards for disabled section? Couple of dozen to be passed over, volunteers permitting. Away support will also receive their club’s team photo/red card.
Question from floor – No representation at Trust Quiz Night from FFC players or buses? Disappointing. TOA taxis did send one team to compete.
Question from floor – Backstage passes at Big in Falkirk for FFC/Trust? Possibly.

8)   Board Report - 25th September 2008.

Football Report – J Hughes gave this report. He informed the Board of player’s injuries. B Allison was not expected to be ready until Christmas time. D Holden was back in training and expects to be ready in a months time, far quicker than was originally expected. R Latapy has been invited to be the coach for Trinidad and Tobago for the next two games with the prospect of taking over as manager in the future. This is something that R Latapy wants. J Hughes said that thought S Lynch would be a great signing for the club and that was at the right age as could develop along with the squad we had at the moment, i.e. S Arfield, T Scobbie, D Barr and one or two others.

Falkirk Herald – Chairman was very upset at Herald headline in the paper that was published on the day of the meeting. First of all it was not true and secondly he could see the Football authorities again seeing Gretna rise before their eyes if this was picked up by the National Press. G Craig was equally upset as this could reflect on the club and that the supporters of the club would get the wrong message. M Ritchie left the meeting to phone they Chairman of the F.C.S.L. Board to get his reaction and returned to say that they were taking legal advice on the matter.

Finance Report – J Stronach the new Finance and Admin Manager, was introduced to the Board and although she had only been in the position a few weeks, she presented a new approach to the position and stated that the system worked by the club was not what was required for a club which had outgrown that system. She was in the process of bringing this more up to date and more modern. She came over very well and will prove to be a positive move by the club.

Sales and Marketing Report – Another new member of the staff was introduced to the Board. David White, who some will already know as he has been a keen supporter of the club for many years and has a season ticket seat right above player’s tunnel. He has been appointed Sales and Marketing Manager in place of T Smith. He stated that he was working harder in the present economic position and that many of our loyal and regular company backers were suffering hardships and was not in position to give the financial support that they had in the past. Listed quite a few who were in that position but said that even with these difficulties the club was still doing quite well. Wants to widen and improve the 1876 Club to see if this could bring in more revenue. He is working to widen both the customer and the supporter base. G Craig said that he was well aware of the difficulties that the present financial situation in the country was causing the club and that he and David were keeping a close eye on events within our club.

E.G.M. – The three resolutions that the Board put forward were passed and now will be in the new articles. The shares buy-back was also agreed.

F.C.S.L. – The Shareholders of the F.C.S.L. have met and agreed the de-merger plan. This will take 3 - 4 months. A long discussion ensued regarding the way that the club approaches the de-merger. The Herald headline of that day caused most concern as it was damaging and not true. A joint letter from the club and the F.C.S.L. refuting this article to be sent to Herald.

Request Letter – A request letter from P Eadie, Chief Executive, F.C.S.L. was given to each member of the board stating that they have been approached by the S.R.U. for the use of the Stadium for International matches on Friday evenings 06/02/09, 27/02/09, 13/03/09 and also 07 or 14/11/08. The board unanimously turned down.

SSDC – Contrary to rumours that circulated regarding the building of the new South Stand, Ogilvie have stated that they are delighted to be involved with the building and erection of the stand and a date of 24/11/08 has been made for the ceremony of cutting the first sod and the beginning of the work. It will be a 33 week build and will be ready for the start of the new season. This will be a high profile occasion. Marketing for season tickets for the new stand will begin in April or early June.

A.O.C.B. – The Board is aiming for 04/12/08 for the A.G.M.

9)   Stadium Update – Stand Up For Falkirk.

Stand Up For Falkirk was not represented at tonight’s Trust meeting. There then followed debate and predictions on what may happen in forthcoming period. Not Minuted.

10)   Falkirk FC EGM.

Covered in Board Report above. The three resolutions that the Board put forward were passed and now will be in the new articles. The shares buy-back was also agreed.

11)   A.O.C.B.

E Thompson at Dundee Utd – All at BairnsTrust saddened to hear of passing of Eddie Thompson. Was 100% committed to Dundee Utd. Trust Chairman knew well through being Trust Rep on FFC Board. Trust Chairman to send card and pass on condolences to son Stephen Thompson.

I McCall – All at BairnsTrust saddened to hear of passing of former player Ian McCall.

A Joyce at FFC – Presentation in Boardroom to Ann Joyce on stepping down as FFC Director. Thanks from FFC for contribution, service and assistance to club especially in dim past. Shares bought out. Boardroom hospitality still available to her. Will formally step down at next rotation of Directors at end of next season. Treasurer to send card/letter of thanks on behalf of BairnsTrust. Since done.  

New Illuminated Sign – New sign on Grangemouth Road advertising upcoming FFC fixture now in place. Planning permission in order. Not fully illuminated yet. Since done.

Teamsheets to Disabled Section – Trust Chairman will ensure.

Trust Annual Membership Draw – Winner of £100 FFC club shop vouchers was M Buchanan, Livingston.

Trust Boardroom Experience Draw – Winners of 2nd round draw for FFC fixtures up to New Year were:

Dundee Utd 01/11/08 – A Mooney, Mississauga, Ontario, Canada. M McIntyre’s guest.
Motherwell 15/11/08 – B Dick, Falkirk. B Guthrie’s guest.
Hibernian 29/11/08 – N Whyte, Falkirk. B Guthrie’s guest.
St Mirren 06/12/08 – J Steel, Denny. M McIntyre’s guest.
Celtic 20/12/08 – W Smart, Polmont. B Guthrie’s guest.

Reserves in order:

1st – J Peck, Glasgow. 2nd – T Skramesto, Askeland, Sabovagen, Norway. 3rd – C Robertson, Stenhousemuir. 4th – A Totten, Dunipace. 5th – M Caldwell, Edinburgh. 6th – W Hendry, Falkirk.
7th – M Buchanan, Livingston. 8th – D Easton, Lower Gledfield, Ardgay, Sutherland.

12)   Date of Next Meeting.

Monday 19th January 2009 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.