"What do I get for being a Robins Trust member?"
It’s something we hear a lot, so we’re trying to be much better about highlighting the work we do and the achievements we make.
So, at the start of the new season – and with new objectives being set – what better time to take a look back and celebrate what we have achieved in the past year.
- July 2021 saw Tracey Crouch MP write to the Minister for culture media and sport with a series of interim recommendations based on evidence collected in the Fan Led Review into football regulation and governance.
Our Chair James Young directly contributed to the evidence gathered in the review in his role as National Council member to the Football Supporters Association (FSA) as did our Fan Elected Director (FED) Dave Beesley. James also helped with the sub-editing and publishing of the 250-page, 74,000-word FSA evidence submission.
- In September, James was part of an FSA delegation to meet with the secretary of state for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, Nadine Dorries MP and minister for sport Nigel Huddleston, speaking on behalf of supporters across League One and Two.
- Months of hard work paid off when by April 2022, the Government responded to the 10 strategic recommendations of the review and set out plans for football reform.
- In November we had our AGM and formally launched a new look trust with a variety of membership and investor options after suspending membership during the height of the global pandemic. This flexible approach to membership, offers something for all pockets with all types of membership enjoying the same benefits and voting rights. All accessible via an easy-to-use membership portal
- We organised a Christmas food collection in December to support our local Open Door charity for the homeless where CTFC fans generously donated around 300 food items which we delivered to a grateful Open Door
- Also in December, we worked with the Club and Community Trust and FSA to launch Proud Robins.
Trust Board member Sam Lear was instrumental in launching the clubs first representative group for LGBTQ+ fans and their allies - a major milestone for diversity and inclusion in our local community and reinforcing that football is for everyone.
Proud Robins supports our LGBTQ+ fans and their allies, families, and friends. This not only celebrates inclusivity but provides a welcoming space and raises awareness against all forms of discrimination and inequality and forms of phobia in football. Follow Proud Robins on Twitter @ProudRobins.
Proud Robins have gone on to making statements in support of Jake Daniels and been involved in talks with the club following alleged homophobic behaviour during a match.
Sam and James initiated talks with the club when Marcus Bignot started working as a coach. They spoke honestly and candidly with representatives of the club about the obvious concerns, leaving nothing unsaid before the club made the appointment.
- In December the Club SLO Jenny, who is also joint vice chair of the Trust, held a discussion with club safety officer Nick Meeks to address and fans concerns about security measures on matchdays and clarify procedures in place. We published the details of that discussion on our website.
Fan representation is a crucial part of what we do, the Trust and SLO are your first point of contact for any concerns you may have, on matchdays or any other day.
- In January 2022, we remembered loyal Robins Fan and Trust board member Richard Allsopp, who passed away suddenly in the summer of 2020.
We held a collection at the ground and Richards family attended the match. Our generous football community raised more than £750 in his memory for The Noonan Syndrome Association, and we still have plans for a plaque in Richard’s memory at the stadium.
- The SLO team along with Cheltenham Community Trust hosted students from Alderman Knight School and National Star Centre for guided tours of the stadium in the summer.
Following on from this, and a meeting with teachers at Alderman Knight, Cheltenham Town have their first Ambassador for the new season.
Noah Millington, a pupil at Alderman Knight who has autism. You can watch this exciting new role evolve as the season progresses.
- Away fans guides have been produced ahead of away games and made available on our website and social media. These have been produced by our SLO liaising with away club’s supporter liaison teams
- Board member Jaimie Henderson has worked tirelessly over the season to produce a fresh, new, informative stadium guide to Whaddon Road. This is now available to all fans, new visitors and will be sent out to away supporter liaison teams ahead of their visits.
- We have strengthened our Trust Board to an enthusiastic group of eight and boast a variety of complementary skills, enabling us as a team to ensure that supporters are represented.
One of our aims is to be always looking ahead to sustain and strengthen the place of Cheltenham Town FC in our community. We are always happy to talk to fans and welcome new blood in our drive forward. With several projects for this season, we anticipate busy and productive times ahead
- Perhaps most importantly of all, our FED continues to staunchly represent the views of the everyday fan in all discussions and meetings with the board.
We – and he – are not always able to speak openly about those discussions, but rest assured we will ALWAYS do our best to ensure Cheltenham Town remains inclusive, affordable and representative.
- There’s always more… in fact there are 300,000 reasons to sign up!
The Trust are currently working behind the scenes on new projects that we hope to publish more information on soon…
And it is anticipated that over the course of the coming season we will break through the £300,000 investment barrier in Cheltenham Town FC, strengthening our position – YOUR POSITION – as the fourth largest shareholder in the club.
The next 12-24 months are set to be transformational in football with legislation following the Government’s Fan Led Review of Football set to be introduced to Parliament.
You may have seen in the news, about Liverpool FC forming a Supporter Board to more-closely align the club to its fans.
The Robins Trust is already that. We have shown in the past 12 months that we are not afraid to have difficult discussions and raise important issues with the club.
Through our close working relationship with the FSA we will push to be at the table for any discussions on the future evolution of the game, the leagues, the TV deals and more…
The more members we have, the more power we have to influence and change things.
Join today at https://robinstrust.org/join