Apologies that we have had to move the home game against Dagenham & Redbridge this Friday to Stanway Rovers. It is a difficult balance between preparing the pitch for the season ahead and hosting Pre-season friendlies, so in the interest of having a playable pitch we have had to move Friday’s fixture. We hope to be back at Melbourne Park on Saturday 27th July for the game against Aldershot Town in our final Pre-season fixture.
The seasons fixtures are now out with home ties at the beginning and end of the season so hopefully we can attract good support at both; and all games in between.
There is lots going on at the moment off the field and I hope to be providing more communications over the next few days and weeks as we head into the new season.
I did request if any of you had questions then share them with us and I will try to respond. The questions received to date are answered below; please keep them coming. The questions help me to understand what is on supporters minds and hopefully I can dispel rumour, provide confidence for the future and give you the answers you seek.
Questions from Supporters:
Q: Since your BBC Essex interview, are we any closer to finalising the takeover?
A: We have now completed all the necessary paperwork for the takeover and are finalising the new shareholdings and obtaining the necessary approvals for Shareholders and Directors.
Q: Why are our admission prices for our home friendlies £10 when all of our other away games are either £5 or £6?
A: We have maintained admission prices the same as last year so were not looking to change as felt that the admission offers good value.
Q: Are we keeping the admission prices for next season the same as last season? Are we still charging £2 more on the day if you don't buy online in advance?
A: We are maintaining admission prices at last year’s levels though are looking to increase the number of concessions on which further details will be provided once this has been agreed. With respect to the discounted admission price for advanced purchase, this was introduced last year to be able to offer non-season ticket holding supporters the opportunity to buy individual match tickets at a reduced rate. This is being maintained for the coming season with the added benefit that the cut-off for buying tickets in advance has been extended until midday on the day of the game.
Q: When did the talks with Brian Potter start taking place? Is the strategy that you're discussing with Brian any different than the initial strategy?
A: Brian approached me a few weeks ago and offered his support for which I am very grateful. Whilst we had our own thoughts, gauged from discussions with a variety of stakeholders, we have effectively started again and initially asked Brian to look at the community engagement of the club. We have now expanded this approach to a wider stakeholder group in order to collate their thoughts on all aspects of the club and its future direction. Having completed his initial work, we are reviewing the findings and have moved onto the task of building out a longer term strategic plan with more specific goals in every area of the clubs activities. Once this is complete it will be communicated more broadly. I would also add that our club could not exist without the support of volunteers to help with activities such as this and I would encourage anyone with the desire to help the club move forward, to get in touch.
Q: Are we getting a new kit next season?
A: We are; Rod and the management team have chosen the kit which will be unveiled in a couple of week’s time. Sorry to disappoint those of you who were looking forward, as I was, to pink this year but I was over-ruled.
Q: I have been wondering what the position will be with me, and my fellow members, who each hold £100 shares. Are we to lose this money or will shares be transferred to the new co or shall we simply have to apply to purchase new shares should we so wish. I am sure myself and my fellow members would welcome clarification.
A: We are finalising the shareholdings in the new club at the moment. The intention is to give all existing members shares in the new club and also offer further shares to those wishing to invest in the club. Given the amount of monies invested to date the relative shares on offer will be small but will allow supporters to still have a stake in the club going forwards.