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Bairns Trust Meeting
15th November 2010 at Falkirk Stadium

1)  Welcome & Apologies Chair T. Paterson welcomed everyone to the meeting.  Apologies - C. Paterson, D. Dunsmore & M. Dickins

2) Minutes of previous meeting Proposed: B. Guthrie, Seconded: M. McIntyre.  All matters arising are covered in agenda items.

3) Secretary’s Report Letter received from SRTRC informing of our declined application for funding – disappointing, letter to be drafted in response as decision seems unfair.  Academy donations are coming in all the time, database being kept of all donations.  There is an opportunity to see academy players tomorrow night in Stirlingshire cup final at Dumbarton, 7.30pm.  Supporters Direct have informed that there is a yahoo group set up to encourage trusts to talk to each other – BT will join.  Board member of Rangers Trust been in touch asking to share ideas, specifically about communication methods, this has been replied to.  Noted that Clyde have become a membership club where one share equals one vote, will be interesting to see how this works out.  Plans for future projects going on include liaising with fans abroad about setting up a package to suit this growing fan base and plans to link up with football groups in the Odenwald region in Germany, of which the town of Falkirk is twinned with.  Trip planned for August 2011, secretary may attend.

4) Boardroom Report Chair M. Ritchie will be writing to all shareholders giving details of AGM which will not take place until 2011. The FFC Community Foundation has secured a one year sponsorship from ORAN worth £10,000.  New match day procedures will be introduced on 06/11/10.  Security measures will be tightened in the dressing room area. New features have been added to the hospitality package including a match day host in the Brockville Lounge.  G. Profit heads the sales & marketing group and he will report on progress made by the group at the November board meeting.  Gate receipts are overall in line with budgets.  With the exception of Dunfermline away, attendances have been very poor. Home walk up has however been above expectations. It is proposed to increase gate prices for the second half of the season to compensate for the increase in VAT. Adult prices will increased by 50p with concession, and family by 25p.  J. Dawson has tendered his resignation to take up the position of Head Groundsman at Murrayfield. This is a great opportunity for Jim and we all wish him well. The club have begun the search for a replacement which will not be easy.  Academy - The club want to re-launch the season ticket holder’s donation. This raised £2,500 at the start of the season. In return for a contribution over £10 the ST holder got a sticker on their seat. Dunfermline Youth Cup – BairnsTrust arranged a “pledge” table at this match for fans to make a donation of £10 or over. In return they will receive a certificate signed by C. McPherson and S. Pressley. Player sponsorship – We need the head and shoulders pictures taken ASAP to allow the club to promote an “adopt a player” scheme. All players in the Academy can be “adopted” for a donation of £25. Open Day at Stirling – Fans can visit the facility and receive a tour, a talk from R. Wilson and the chance to watch the whole Academy train. They should also have the chance to meet C. McPherson and hopefully we can ask S. Pressley and A. Smith to be available on the night to talk about the importance of the Academy.  At the last board meeting I was invited on to a sub group which was set up to look at the strategy on the future of the club in terms of football development and performance.  The next few seasons will be very challenging financially for Scottish Football and it is important that we are fully aware of how these challenges will affect Falkirk.

5) Treasurer’s Report Membership subscriptions are still coming in.  Good income during the month with marquee tuck shop making good profits and merchandise sales of old programmes, Kevin Drinkell’s new book, eBay sales and influx of sales of Brockville Bairns DVD, now sold out!  Only outgoings were purchasing of tuck shop stock and postage payments.  Thanks to all volunteers who help on a match day.  Letter received from Inland Revenue, no return submitted for year end 2009.  This is disputed and treasurer has been in contact with IR to ensure no fine - should be ok if form is submitted again quickly. New sharesavers following relaunch. New Academy standing order form available. 2 Norwegian Trust Members renewed again. Q – Any news on previous treasurer?  Legal letter sent but still response!  Looking unlikely any missing information will be obtained.

6) Social Convener’s Report 2011 Calendar - As we went to publish our calendar, we obtained prices from APB printers who published our calendar last year. It was found that Garthland printers had also intended to publish an official calendar which they would put on sale at the Stadium. This would be in direct competition with BT calendar.  In an attempt to make sure only one calendar was produced, thereby maximising the revenue which would be going to the Falkirk Academy, T. Paterson got in touch with Garthland and they said that if they were given the contract to print ours, they would not print one in competition with ours.  Prices were obtained for two different styles of calendar: The A3 style which BairnsTrust produced last year and the B3 style produced by Garthland last year.  As part of the contract, Garthland asked if they could run off an extra 200 copies which they would sell as part of a deal to encourage fans to buy their match day programme.  This was reflected in the price offered by Garthland. The committee received the quotes from both APB and Garthland, and were all asked for their input/preference.  The majority of the committee agreed to the deal, and we have placed the order with Garthland for 1000 copies of the B3 style calendar.  The general knowledge quiz night will be held at Castings Club on last Monday in January 2011.  It will be usual format, always a good night.  Discussions held with S. Hunter of Minerva regarding the production of signed photos of players.  Family marquee going from strength to strength and is now open from 10am on matchdays.

7) A.O.B. *Mr Campbell re-raised complaint from May about prime seats pricing structure and lack of concessions.  Concerns have been raised at board level.  Signage to be put in ticket office and to be more obviously stated on literature when renewing season tickets.
*Disabled club next meeting is on Monday 22nd November, 7.30pm at Falkirk Stadium.
*Policing/stewarding, or lack of, at stadium – leading to pitch invasions on a number of occasions.  Police are not taking responsibility.
*Match day experience – long discussion between members took place.  There have been lots of changes since the arrival of new commercial manager G. Dowson.  Feedback - Pre-match tannoy too loud, cheerleaders not very good – are they being paid? Hospitality host being paid large sum? Flag bearers mostly well received – T. Paterson to bring concerns up at next FFC board meeting and invitation to be made to Mr Dowson to come to the next BairnsTrust meeting.
*Season ticket holders not being able to sit in their own seat at north end of main stand. Section has been taped off to accommodate community team complimentary tickets but season ticket holders have not been notified!  Club to be informed.
* On 10th November, Chairman received an e-mail from S. Jackson tendering his resignation from the trust committee with immediate effect; he also wished the trust the best for the future.  Steven has been a great servant for the trust over the past years and I personally would like to thank him for his input and guidance. I'm sure we all wish him well in the future.
*New committee member vacancy – Member G. Burns, Proposed: P. Jack, Seconded: T. Paterson.  Duly carried.
*VAT increase in January 2011 discussed re ticket prices.

8) Date of Next Meeting Monday 17th January 2011 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.


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