CUSG Meeting Summary - Remote meeting via Zoom, 03.07.2023
Attendance – John Kukuc (Chair), Terry McCarthy (London Branch), Simon Clarkson (SLO), Dan Maclennan, Alastair Woodcock (CUOSC), Sonny Kirkwood (Warwick Road Enders), Andy Hall, Amy Nixon, Nigel Clibbens (CUFC)
Apologies – Nigel Davidson (EDI Rep/CUOSC), Keith Elliott (CUSAT), Keith Ward (Scottish Supporter), Gary Wylie (LGBTQ+ Supporters)
Sonny Kirkwood was introduced as a potential new representative.
- Club Update
Nigel C had circulated the club update already.
Click HERE to read the full club update.
He summarised some of the key contents: Club admitted to racist chants being made at Bradford game on Boxing Day. FA penalty awaited. Still under investigation for play off semi final incidents. Precedent for significant fines being levied on clubs exists. After a rise in incidents last year we need to see a return to usual high standards. Club appealed to fans to help with this.
Fan sanctioning policy is now in place (since first quarter of 2023). This is now also extended to academy games. Andy said a standard set of articles were being put together about fan behaviour – these would appear on the club website. He asked CUSG groups to re-tweet/reinforce this messaging.
McConnell’s Bar is being improved - details are in the club update. New furniture, food and pre-match entertainment will take place. The bar will be by advance ticket entry only with extra charges to apply. Full details and sponsor announcement shortly.
Fans in Warwick Road End and Paddock South to be allowed to exit into the FanZone at half-time to offer additional beer and food outlets.
FanZone upgrades should be ready for the first game of season.
Dan suggested re-naming of the Youth Team player of the year award in memory of David Wilkes. Nigel C agreed that this would be a great idea.
Simon applauded the club’s plan to open up access to the FanZone at half-time. Increased numbers in the WRE means catering outlets are overwhelmed, he said. Nigel C said this move makes the FZ more attractive to vendors.
Dan asked if the new club shop website will be advertised? Nigel C said PR for this was in hand and would be arranged this week.
- Forum and raffle review
Terry reported higher numbers attending the forum than other recent ones. The raffle that was held on the night raised £951. Of this, £224 was taken in cash on the night. £727 came from online sales that ran concurrently. Total receipts came to £932 after charges.
Terry laid out a plan to have both summer and winter raffles each year. The draw for the winter raffle coming up to be held on January 2/3. A big sales effort at the New Year’s Day game v Port Vale would be needed.
He said CUSG could raise £5k this year via the winter raffle (last year was £2.6k).
Agreement was reached in principle to hold two raffles each year.
Andy reported 5.5k watched the forum stream on Youtube.
Terry has bank balance estimate only. £1637 (est)
No outstanding commitments.
Bucket collections were planned for the Derby game (23/09) and Lincoln (01/04). Both games should attract decent crowds.
Simon stressed the need to differentiate from the bucket collections and the summer/winter raffles, hence the dates don't clash.
Winter raffle to launch in October.
Nigel C commented that fan owned clubs such as Exeter City do fundraising at every home game.
- Club charter review
The club had already progressed this. Simon and Nigel D had looked at this and suggested updates. Details in the club update.
- Projects update
Memorabilia -- a decision was needed on what to do with all the material collected. The archive of all home programmes since 1960 is almost complete. Terry suggested we put out an appeal to find the missing programmes.
We were looking to sell some items (e.g. the complete 74-75 programme collection of which there are several sets).
Dan said the best source for selling programmes was Ebay followed by an auction. Facebook programme collectors groups might be able to fill some gaps. Dan offered to post a list of the missing programmes on Facebook.
Some ticket stubs are also in the collection and are potentially valuable.
- EDI Update
EFL Code of Practice on EDI - Work continues on this important piece of work ahead of the assessment in October ‘23.
Neurodiversity – final meetings with individual groups ahead of a large around the table of all concerned.
EDI calendar for next season – planning underway and discussions with organisations, groups, partners and individuals about what this will look like this season.
Wheelchair accessible area – Nigel and John to meet with the wider group tbc as above in Neurodiversity, where we hope to make some progress on this development.
Disabled Supporter’s Group - As a temporary measure for as long as required, Nigel Davidson and Joh Kukuc have assumed the roles of Chair and Treasurer of the Disabled Supporter’s Group. This has been necessary due to Ken Bell stepping down as signatory on the Disabled Supporter’s Group Bank Account as of the end of June 2023. CUSG would like to place on record thanks to Ken Bell for all his work supporting Barry Carter and the group over the years.
We will be actively looking for support and assistance in this area going forward and will shortly advertise for expressions of interest in the same way as we are doing for the Women’s & Girl’s Rep.
EFL Film - The EFL have completed filming on this project and our own London-based supporter Jon McLoughlin has been involved. We are excited to see the final version of the film.
Women’s and Girls EDI Rep - To be advertised in coming days.
Mencap Soft Play Equipment - Thanks go to Charlotte Crosby from Mencap in Carlisle who has generously donated some soft play equipment to the club which we hope to be able to use as we develop the idea of a Sensory Room/Viewing Area for our Neurodiverse supporters in the future.
- SLO Update
Simon said it was a busy time of the year despite a lack of fixtures. A review of the Brunton Park visitor’s guide was under way. 20 new SLO’s to engage with. New grounds to visit. Renewing efforts to get more meeters and greeters with a particular emphasis on looking to involve both younger and some female fans.
An exciting proposition was coming up (9-12 months away). It would involve an application for external funding to help with it. It would be a ‘brilliant’ way to get memorabilia on display, Simon added. More details would be provided in due course.
- Group updates
Renewal period for members coming up. Reminders are automatically going out. Over 800 members now. Big uplift in numbers recently. We are sponsoring Ryan Edmondson for next season.
300+ members now. The highest total for some years. A decision had been recently taken to donate £6k to various projects including a £4k package for the academy. Brunton Bugle and Ladies team sponsorship to continue.
We are sponsoring Owen Moxon again home and away, also the fixture cards and we will be sponsoring the last home game of the season. We have just started auctioning off signed shirts on eBay if fans want to keep a look out too. We’ve priced up for the first 2 away games now also if people want to book via the CUSAT mobile.
- Any Other Business
Terry reminded the group that the proceeds from the recent forum raffle need to be split with the Jigsaw charity. Simon suggested £100. Andy said that Jigsaw wanted a prize to give out. CUSG could provide it.
Sonny reported no group update this month. FanZone queries have been answered.
John looking at options for the WRE roof to improve the acoustics. CUSG could potentially help to fund this. It needs to be affordable. No commitment yet. John to find out potential cost.
Andy said that Simon will have a more official capacity when talking to ITV about fan issues. ITV wanted two reps from the CUSG to contact directly. Male/female ideally. The group was asked to consider possible reps.
Dan has done an audit on missing shirts from the collection – an appeal to go out soon. Some excess shirts can go to CUSG for possible sale.
- Date of next meeting