19th April 2021 (Online Session)
Attending: Dave Eyles (Chair), Bruce Walker (Minutes), Luke Harris, Ian Devoy, Rachael Brown, Lionel Bird, Nigel Lawrence, Grace McKenna
Apologies: Frank Smith, Geoffery Gulzar, Jamie Gordon, Andy Fletcher
Matters Arising from Previous Meeting
Matters Arising from Items on the March Agenda were dealt with during the meeting with the exception of :
Item 6: Finance and Membership: Bruce would contact our reviewer of the Trust's accounts for 2019/20 to confirm their accordance with requirements
Update from the Chair
Dave confirmed that the next Forum would be 28th April and that the discussion would cover the Club's non-submission of accounts and the implications, if any, of this for the City's transfer dealings. He also confirmed that the Forum's Chair had been informed that Frank would be withdrawing his candidacy for the Safety Advisory Group.
The remainder of Dave's updates were covered in Items 9 and 10 below.
Finance, Membership and Accounts
Rachael reported no change in theTrust's Fighting Fund (£4,555.84) and Membership numbers (2,785).
Football Supporters' Association
Grace reported that, spurred on by the Europen Super League proposals, the Government had brought forward the start of the Fan-led Review into Football Governance, to be led by Tracey Crouch. The FSA will be asking all Football Trusts, including the Sky Blue Trust, if they would like to make a submission to that Review. The Trust would keenly await that request.
Grace also pointed the Board to the FSA's initiatives on Fans for Diversity (see also Item 11 below) and the role of women within that. A stand-up comedian and performer Hannah Kumari, who is both a Coventry City and England fan, is promoting her show Engerlund which addresses both issues. Grace was intending to see Hannah in June but knew that she was keen to perform in Coventry during City of Culture festivities.
Dave agreed to liaise with Grace in due course about the possibility of using the Albany Social Club for such a performance in the future.
In Andy's absence, it was noted that:
The banner (logo) on our communications had not yet been changed and it was requested that this be done for consistency across the Trust.
Update and Progress on Website Revisions
Luke reported that the items for the Newsletter were 'ready to go' but the new website was still not operational. Therefore, it would be necessary to post these items on the current (old) website. Grace agreed to provide Luke with some additional images for the Newsletter. The Newsletter should be available/distributed by the end of the week.
Board Members were keen to pursue Luke's ideas, discussed and circulated previously, about forming partnerships with local businesses starting with three pubs/bars close to the Ricoh. The idea would be to advertise these and other partnerships, links to other supporters groups and community activities to members via Newsletters and notices' linked to the website.
In terms of advancing these initiatives, it was becoming problematic that the development of the new website, to which members and others could ideally be referred, seemed to have come to a halt while the old website remained unsatisfactory in terms of its technical performance and image.
Dave agreed to pursue this matter with Jamie and Luke off-line
City of Culture
Grace drew Board's attention to initiatives around diversity that pursued by Trusts such as those of Cardiff City and Nottingham Forest, and recently at Luton Town. All had used visual imagery in contexts which could be informative for the Trust's planned initiatives in this area.
After a lively discussion it was agreed that:
Bruce would contact the City of Culture organisation to enquire about the processes involved in becoming part of (badged as) 'City of Culture' and the procedures which might have to be followed in the event that we were to request assistance (financial and otherwise) with the project
Bruce would also contact Colin Henderson as Chair of the Supporters Forum to seek initially his and then the Forum's participants help and participation in the initiative.
Grace agreed to make enquiries of the FSA about their arrangements for support and funding of diversity initiatives
Any Other Business
Date of Next Meeting
Monday 24th May at 7.00 p.m. by Zoom