First and foremost, I hope that you’ve all had a wonderful Christmas so far!
It’s always great getting out on a Boxing Day and there’s no better thing to do than to come along to St James Park, hopefully to provide some action and content for the media team's Christmas cracker videos for next season!
I did think that this would be a good opportunity to update you all on the recent supporters’ survey. We have just set to work on several initiatives to improve the supporter experience and help develop the club. There are two areas that we are focussing on initially:
- sustainable transport and how supporters get to home games; and
- attracting more women and more men under 45 years of age into the club.
David Clough, the club commercial director said: "We feel it is important that we don't rush into activity and 'go off half-hearted' so we are taking the time to contact other similar football clubs to gain feedback to activities they have undertaken that are similar to the ones we are looking at. In particularly spoken to clubs around sustainable transport options and how they have reduced the reliance on the car for transport to matchdays and home games. Once we have a fuller picture, we will take this into discussions with our partner transport providers.
"In addition to this, we are looking at how we potentially alter the demographics of our home spectators and get more women and more men aged under 45 years to home games. Attracting an increased number of paying supporters is key for a club like ours and we have these two big demographic holes that we need to fill. There is some potential exciting news on this that will be finalised over the next month or so as we look for strategic initiatives, ideas and news ways of doing things tactically which will help us attract more people to our home games."
With this in mind, can I encourage all of our supporters aged between 14 and 23 to keep a lookout for opportunities to engage with club and Trust through our newly formed Youth Council – there will be a launch event in January. If you’d be interested and would like to know more then please, contact them on firstname.lastname@example.org. They’d love to hear from you.
As we enter the new year the Trust will shortly be contacting its members to establish their views on gambling. You will have noticed the widespread, national publicity around this recently and we’d like to understand how you feel about it. For the moment, we have asked the club not to actively seek sponsorship from organisations in this industry but of course, it’s vital that we establish this is what you would want. We’ll be in touch shortly with our members!
In the meantime, on behalf of the Trust, may I wish you all a very prosperous and happy new year.