In a newsletter to members, Exeter City Supporters' Trust chairman Nick Hawker provided an insight into what the Club and Trust boards are doing to mitigate the issues that the suspension of football, due to the coronavirus pandemic, is causing.
To start, I really hope that you are all safe and well. These really are strange times and challenging times.
The Trust and club boards continue to meet on a regular basis, though both have adjusted their agenda's to reflect the times. Like many of you I am sure, we have become very familiar with ZOOM!
These are extremely challenging times and I wanted to provide some insight into what the club and Trust are doing to mitigate the many issues that face us.
Perhaps most importantly, and as I'm sure you realise, much of what is happening is, of course, totally out of our hands. Over recent weeks communications from the EFL have been arriving thick and fast but again, even they are waiting on instruction from the government in understanding next steps.
As you will have seen from various statements made by the club, most staff (including players) at both St James Park and the Clifford Hill training ground have been furloughed under the government scheme. Senior players have deferred a significant portion of their wages and those club board directors who receive some form of payment for services they provide continue to work on our behalf but are foregoing payment.
Last year, at the Trust's request, the club set up a small group of people to closely examine our cash-flow capacity over the coming years to ensure we are operating at a sustainable and competitive level. This work has now been advanced and the effort increased to look at the more immediate impact as well. Of course, no one had imagined the 2019/20 season not finishing (yet!), nor any prospect of not playing in front of crowds, nor the uncertainty of the forthcoming season. These uncertainties have added enormous impetus to that group.
It would be foolish to say we are not going to be impacted by events but until decisions are made relating to these matters it's hard to accurately assess how. Numerous scenarios are being examined and planned for, but until we have more clarity around what will actually happen next, and how the football authorities and government respond to that situation, it is very much a case of wait and see.
What I can say is how very proud I am at the response from the staff, the players, and the senior management here at Exeter City. As you would expect from a supporter-owned club, everybody has behaved with an amazing degree integrity and desire to help. I hope you'll join me in thanking them all!
Can I also thank the many of you who have made very kind and generous donations to the club. They are extremely valuabe to us. If you would like to make a donation through the Trust that goes directly toward helping the club you can do so here.
Alternatively, why not join the City Foundation - not-for-profit lottery scheme, whereby any surplus money is ploughed back into good causes at the club - here.