The Football Club has published a summary of the questions asked and answers given at last week’s Fans Forum when the panel comprised Gareth Ainsworth, Paul Hayes, Dayle Southwell and Club Chairman Andrew Howard.
As previously advised, the Annual General Meeting of Wycombe Wanderers Trust will be held on Wednesday 30 November 2016. Formal notice will be issued in due course.
One item of business will be the election of members to the Trust Board of Directors.
Nominations are welcome from members who have the necessary time and skills to contribute to the running of the Trust.
If you are interested, please contact me (details below) to arrange an initial discussion and to request a Nomination Form.
Nomination Forms must be returned to the registered office of the Trust by Friday 4 November.
In the latest in our series where members of the Trust Board tell us about their particular roles, we hear from Nigel Kingston – pictured on the right in the picture below.
“I was elected as a Trust Director at the AGM held in November 2015. I was delighted to become an elected member of the Trust Board as I had been working as a co-opted director for 6 months prior to this. As a fan for over 25 years it is an honour to be involved with the Club at this level.
The responsibility of the Trust Board is to safeguard the heritage of the Football Club and to work with the Football Club to contribute to improving the performance wherever possible. Each Director on the Trust board has agreed responsibilities, linked to their own expertise or interest.
My primary responsibilities have been geared to the Share Scheme and I am Chairman of the Share Scheme Marketing Group. This is a small group of 4 people, (not all Trust Directors) whose job it has been to market the Share Scheme to as wide an audience as possible. We have tried to gain high levels of awareness of the Scheme within the local Community as well as within the fan base. In order to achieve this we have reached out to local and national media, sports personalities, previous players, local businesses and a number of high net worth individuals. We have also run a number of incentives for fans, such as match day hospitality to increase participation.
I think we have been pretty successful as we have raised to date well over £700,000 and have around 315 members of the Share Scheme. Contributions to the Scheme have dropped off recently but we will be developing some new initiatives for it in early 2017. The Scheme has been fundamental in keeping the Club going by providing essential working capital, as bank loans or overdrafts are pretty hard to come by. It has been great to be involved with this initiative which has provided such a lifeline to the Club.
As you probably know we have recently launched the 500 Club. This is an initiative to raise £75,000 to boost the playing budget, especially in the January transfer window. In conjunction with the Fans Council I have been leading the development and launch of the 500 Club. So far it’s been an amazing success, we have raised £23,000 in the first nine days and have 130 fans as members. We are over 30% towards our target but need lots more fans to join, so please think about signing up on www.500wanderers.co.uk
One of the things that the Trust tries to do is to keep the fans’ interests uppermost all the time and to keep them informed of what we do through the minutes of Trust meetings and by manning the Trust table in the Vere Suite on match days, so that fans can raise any issues with the Trust directors on duty that day. As part of my responsibilities with the Share Scheme and the 500 Club, I have been working closely with the Fans’ Council which has given me a closer feel for fans opinions in these areas.
Overall I have enjoyed the time I have spent so far as a director. I have been amazed at the dedication of both the staff and the volunteers and the hours that they are prepared to put in to support the Club. I’ll continue to do whatever I can to drive the success of the Club, including shouting loud and long from the stands to encourage and support the players, through thick and thin!!”
Blues through and through
‘Charlie’ was a long time supporter of the football club until this summer, when his illness prevented him coming to watch the team.
He had been a regular traveller to away games with WWISC and Charlie was one of the first Trust members to subscribe into the Share Scheme.
Our condolences go out to Charlie’s family at this sad time.
The 500 Club presents the opportunity for fans to contribute to a transfer fund to be spent on new signings – either loan or permanent – during the January transfer window, strengthening the club’s chances of success in the second half of the season.
The target is £75,000, made up of pledges of £150 from 500 supporters, each of whom have the chance to win exclusive prizes in a series of draws, which could include meet and greet opportunities, behind-the-scenes tours and signed merchandise. These contributions can be made via a direct debit of £12.50 per month, or a one-off payment.
Club chairman Andrew Howard said:
“To succeed in football requires passion, belief, hard work and determination, and these are all attributes the management, players and staff have in abundance.
It also takes money, and although the club and Trust have made great strides, we still have debt, and like any football club, we will always require investment. We have pushed our budget to the limit this season in the real hope and belief that we can, and will, achieve great things, and that has to remain our primary focus.
We have entered the 2016/17 campaign stronger financially than we have at any point under fan ownership, and while the survival and sustainability of the club is our number one priority, we want to give the management staff the best possible chance of moving us forward on the pitch, and that means widening the funds they have available to spend on players. In short, the bigger the budget, the better our chances of success.”
The 500 Club is an initiative devised and implemented by the Football Club, Trust and Fans Council in unison, and each member will receive a beautifully presented limited edition squad signed photograph, together with an invitation to an exclusive end of season event with the players.
Fans can sign up to the 500 Club in one of two ways, either by monthly direct debit or as a one off payment. Full details are available on the 500 Club website: http://www.500wanderers.co.uk
Race Night – Friday 11th November
Quiz Night – Friday 13th January
Annual Dinner – Friday 10th March
All events start at 7:30
Enquiries to Sandie Derben 01494 441145
In just over 14 months since the Share Scheme was launched, there has been a terrific response from our members and with £735k now committed, we are already well over one third of the way towards our target.
We set ourselves a target to raise £2,000,000 over 5 years “to improve the capital base of the Trust in order for it to invest in its assets WWFC and FALL” by using a community share structure to:
- Ensure the club remains in fans’ ownership with the provision of a capital injection to re-finance the Football Club
- Provide resources to improve the profitability of the business and the management structure of the Football Club
- Invest in improved conference and matchday facilities to improve the attraction of Adams Park as an alternative event venue
- Widen the community ownership of the Football Club and its social benefit
Already we are seeing the benefits of the £447k of Share Scheme money that has been banked, with the Football Club finances heading towards a more stable position and a number of visible improvements being made around the stadium. These will continue as more funds come in.
The Share Scheme is set up so that anyone can invest at any level and if necessary spread their payments over the next 5 years.
We started off with a good number of members wanting to donate their £10 a year subscription EACH MONTH and most of those people have now turned those donations into share purchases to build up a good number of shares over the coming five years.
At the outset it was a simple calculation that if 1000 members each were able to invest £2000, then we would quickly and easily reach our target. Thanks to those who have put in a ‘lump sum’ – some have invested £2000, some have paid more and some less but all are much appreciated.
If we are to continue to ensure Community ownership, then we do need to keep progressing towards our target and hence this message is now being put out to our membership.
So Are YOU Getting Your Share?
Do please consider if you can help in anyway by either setting up a 5-year payment plan (monthly or annually) or by donating a one-off payment of whatever you can. The minimum investment is £100 and the maximum is £100,000.
If you can, then the forms are on our website page –click here – where you can also find the brochure and all the associated background information.
Any questions can be emailed to email@example.com
We believe that by raising extra capital through these Community Shares to invest in the Club, we can turn a business that has traditionally lost money into one built on firm foundations making a profit and make sure the Club remains owned by you, the fans.
Many thanks for any help you can give.
Chairman – Share Issue Marketing Group
The Trust Annual General Meeting this year will be on the evening of Wednesday 30 November in the Vere Suite.
There will also be two supporting events:
* Members will have an opportunity to meet the election candidates prior to the Hartlepool match on Saturday 26 November, also in the Vere Suite.
* There will be a Finance Forum on the evening of Thursday 8 December, in Monty’s, for members seeking a greater understanding of the accounts or wishing to have any questions answered on a one-to-one basis.
More details on all of the above will follow nearer the time.
A small group from the Trust Board, led by the then new Trust Director Dale Jenkins put together the following which we hope will be useful:
The Basic Structure
Wycombe Wanderers Trust took over Wycombe Wanderers Football Club on 29th June 2012 from Steve Hayes.
Wycombe Wanderers Trust owns Wycombe Wanderers FC (the trading entity) and Adams Park as separate entities.
- Wycombe Wanderers Trust Board is made up of the following directors:
John Bignell firstname.lastname@example.org
Mark Burrell email@example.com
Alan Cecil firstname.lastname@example.org
David Cook email@example.com
John Derben firstname.lastname@example.org
Dale Jenkins email@example.com
Nigel Kingston firstname.lastname@example.org
David Roberton email@example.com
David Smith firstname.lastname@example.org
Trevor Stroud email@example.com
Colin Treacher firstname.lastname@example.org
- Ownership of Adams Park (professionally assessed at £7million) is held within Frank Adams Legacy Limited (“FALL”). There is a separate FALL Board, currently under reconstruction.
- Most major debts of the Trust sit under FALL, secured by charges on Adams Park, but Wycombe Wanderers Trust also has some debts to pay.
- Wycombe Wanderers Trust relies on rental income from WWFC (the trading entity) to gradually pay down its creditors and loans via FALL (for example remaining Steve Hayes repayments, Chairboys Funders interest).
- No takeover or change in ownership can proceed without 75% approval from all Legacy Members.
- Legacy Members are members who are in their fourth (at least) consecutive year of holding a season ticket. Legacy membership is retained in future years as long as season ticket holding continues. There are approximately 570 Legacy Members at present.
- A uniquely structured members club; one of only four fan owned clubs in the Football League.
- Wycombe Wanderers Trust became a Community Benefit Society during 2014 as this allows us to raise capital by selling shares to our members (see under Functions, below).
- Our full registered name is Wycombe Wanderers Supporters Group Limited. We had to adopt this name as part of the process of registering as a society, but we have kept Wycombe Wanderers Trust as our day to day trading name for everyone’s convenience.
Wycombe Wanderers Trust does not run the football club.
- Wycombe Wanderers Football Club controls all income from footballing matters and the use of Adams Park on matchdays and non-matchdays.
- Wycombe Wanderers Football Club’s operations are managed by Andrew Howard (WWFC Chairman) and its employees.
- Only the Wycombe Wanderers Trust Board can appoint and remove individuals from and to the WWFC club board (WWFC’s Club Board is made up of Andrew Howard, Ivor Beeks, Mark Burrell, Trevor Stroud and David Cook).
Since Wycombe Wanderers Trust, and its Board, does not run the football club, the Trust’s job is to create an environment which will help WWFC to succeed.
This is done in a number of ways:
- Providing governance over its subsidiary companies – WWFC and FALL – and also support WWSET– our Community Trust which has charity status.
- Providing support to WWFC, for example volunteer forces to reduce costs; aiding and assisting WWFC’s employees through “WWFC PALS” as and when required.
- Undertaking other fundraising initiatives, for example sale of matchday badges and voluntary Trust member initiatives – to raise income.
- Communicating with members via emails, members meetings and visibility. Trust board directors will be held to account by Trust members and a third of the Wycombe Wanderers Trust Board directors retire by rotation at each AGM.
- Seeking to grow and expand our membership and therefore widen the fan ownership base in the community, particularly the younger and the future generation of supporters.
- Ensure members are consulted about and vote on the designated key issues affecting the football club (listed in the Trust Rules on the Wycombe Wanderers Trust website).
- Raising funds via the Share Scheme – to secure the working capital to allow Wycombe Wanderers Football Club to move towards breakeven (or a small profit) and allow the football club to pay its rent as scheduled to pay down remaining debts/ loans.
Watch this video and then join more than 300 Wycombe Wanderers fans who are investing in their club via the Trust’s Share Scheme. (Track: Love Runs Out by One Republic.) Every little helps but there is a feel good factor amongst those who have signed up to do their bit! Share Offer Forms Share Offer Brochure
Here we hear from David Smith – who was co-opted onto the Trust Board to fill a vacancy earlier this year. The following was published in the Stevenage match programme on Saturday. “As the most recently appointed Trust director I am delighted to have the opportunity to introduce myself and outline the contribution I hope [more…]
Wanderers fans can now pre-order an anthem jacket, as worn by the team as they walk out from the tunnel before every match. The jackets were launched this summer and feature the names of the first 150 investors into the Wycombe Wanderers Trust share scheme, which has now raised a lot of much needed working capital for [more…]
This season each Trust Director is writing a piece explaining their specific role. Below is the edition included in the programme vs Colchester United on August 20th. Trust Director Dale Jenkins Talks Through His Role After having served for 18 months on the Trust Board I can already reflect on an exciting, enjoyable experience where [more…]
The Trust lost one of its Legacy Members recently with the sad death of Peter Sheridan who passed away on Saturday 16th August at the age of 74. ‘Pete’ had been a Wanderers supporter for many many years, He usually socialized in the Vere Suite before games and was a regular traveller to away games with the Wycombe Wanderers [more…]
On Sunday the Football League Paper carried an article by Paul Eddison following an interview given to him by Wycombe Wanderers Club Chairman Andrew Howard. Click on this link Football League Paper Article 210816 to read or on the photograph to the right Click here to read a similar interview given by Andrew to ‘Get Bucks’ [more…]
Wycombe Wanderers are hosting the inaugural Buckinghamshire “Question of Sport” Charity Dinner at Adams Park on Thursday November 3rd in aid of the Rennie Grove Hospice Care charity. The format of the night is a fantastic interactive sports quiz along with a three course dinner, auction and raffle and is being attended by leaders of the business [more…]
Due to a few issues last season, the club felt the need to review and revise its policy for disabled persons car parking. Click here to read the revised policy which contains instructions on how to secure parking for disabled supporters and/or their carer/driver.
Towards the end of June, one of Wycombe Wanderers eldest fans sadly passed away. Dorothy Carpenter from Stokenchurch was ninety years old and registered blind and this picture was taken of her last Christmas in her favourite WWFC t-shirt – aged 90. Due to her age and blindness, Dorothy didn’t attend games (apart from the Trophy [more…]
Adams Park has excellent conference and banqueting facilities available for hire for a great variety of functions including meetings and exhibitions Many of the function rooms can be arranged in a number of ways to suit your individual needs and are available for half or full day. The Executive Boxes can be hired on an [more…]
Terry Hall is back at Adams Park this coming season with his badges stall. http://www.terrysbadges.co.uk/ If you want to buy a frame in which to keep your badge collection from last season, then Terry can supply one for just £20. Click on this pic to enlarge. There will also be an opportunity to buy any badges you [more…]