RFC Senior Managers Meeting With STAR - September
The latest of our regular meetings with RFC senior managers took place at the Mad Stad on Wednesday 7th September and included supporter issues such as Reciprocal ticketing, Royals Rendezvous and EFL Trophy amongst others.
You can download a summary of notes from the meeting here.
The STAR AGM 2016
The STAR annual general meeting was held on 1st September 2016 with about 200 members present. Chairman Paul Ellix gave the annual report, the highlights of which were:
- Launch of STAR’s Reading FC Hall of Fame in March
- STAR procures Asset of Community Value for Madejski Stadium
- STAR consultation with and representation of supporter concerns over Royal Elm Park plans
- Development of a formal ‘structured relationship’ with RFC in line with the Government’s Expert Working Group on supporter representation
- STAR’s participation in the national ‘Twenty’s Plenty’ campaign to cap away ticket prices
- Protocol for supporter representation agreed with club
- Organising the popular card vote for Player of the Season
- Membership down 15% to 1418 (due to football-related reasons!)
- 3000 passengers taken in 65 coaches to 26 stadia by STAR travel
- STAR sponsorship of Reading FC Deaf team
- Planning for Remembrance trip to northern France in June 2017 (places still available).
Four board members were re-elected: Vicci Elliott, Mel Bishop, Paula Martin and Roger Titford. There are currently four vacant positions on the Board and co-opted board members are sought, please get in touch with firstname.lastname@example.org
The AGM agreed to increase the ‘ring-fenced’ sum of money brought over from Reading Football Supporters’ Club in 2002 to £17,500 to take account of inflation and to agree the three general purposes for which it might be used in future. There are no current plans to spend this sum.
From time to time STAR makes an award for ‘Services to Reading Supporters’ in memory of Sybil Ford. This year the award was given to the football commentators of Hospital Radio Reading – Ian Bruce, Graeme Collyer and David Downs – for all the good work they have done over the past 59 years since the service was started by the late Les Warne.
2017 Remembrance trip to France
STAR is arranging a Remembrance trip to France to visit the graves of former Reading FC players who lost their lives whilst serving in the forces during the two World Wars.
The trip is to take place over 3 days / 2 nights from 1st June 2017. The total cost will be £300 per person, payable in instalments, with a deposit of £50 per person to secure your place payable by the end of September. The cost includes executive coach travel throughout, ferry crossings and 2 nights’ bed and breakfast accommodation in Mercure hotels.
We are still finalising the initinery but it will include visits to:
Frank Ibbotson’s grave in Caen,
Normandy; Pegasus Bridge and Merville Battery,
Allen Foster’s grave in Corbie near Amiens;
Alex McCurdie’s grave in Villers-Plouich in Picardie;
The Thiepval Memorial, where Norman Wood is commemorated;
and The Arras Memorial where Walter Tull is commemorated.
For 2017 places are limited so if you are interested please call in at STAR Base or email email@example.com and we shall provide you with further details.
Keeping Updated With Our Email Bulletins
As part of our continued efforts to improve email communication to members we operate a strict member e-mailing list incorporating the latest best practice. When completing your membership application we use the email address from your application to contact you with our Bulletins and Reading Matter newsletters.
As with other organisations, we have found in the past that some email accounts on our mailing list become outdated, become full or otherwise unavailable, especially web based accounts such as Gmail and Hotmail and repeated attempts to send to those addresses can unfortunately be interpreted by internet providers as spam. To help improve deliverability and avoid problems associated with spam filtering, emails returned to us as undelivered or unavailable are removed from our main mailing list. We will make a further attempt to contact those account holders to re-subscribe but if unsuccessful those email addresses will remain off future circulations.
You can also help by marking our address of firstname.lastname@example.org as a 'friendly' email in your spam filters or if you are changing your email address you can update this using the 'Update Preferences' link in the footer of our Bulletins. If you prefer not to receive these emails you can of course use the 'unsubscribe' link, also in the footer.
We hope this will lead to an improvement for the vast majority of our members. Should you find you have not been receiving emails from us, and have checked your spam filter, please contact email@example.com with your details.
STAR is very pleased to see Reading FC take the lead on ticket pricing in the Championship in 2016-17 with its £20 structure for fans in the Eamonn Dolan Stand and away fans. The initiative was commended at the national Football Supporters' Federation summit at the weekend, alongside the £30 cap on away ticket prices in the Premier League and Arsenal and Swansea subsidising their away fans ticket costs.
In October 2015 STAR organised a march around the Madejski Stadium behind the ‘Twenty’s Plenty’ banner and gathered a 300 signature strong petition backing the campaign. The subject of ticket pricing and reciprocal away ticket pricing has been raised by STAR in meetings with the Club senior management throughout last season (30th September, 9th November, 17th February, 11th April and 23rd May) and noted on this website. STAR’s sustained efforts will have had some influence on the decision.
STAR sincerely hopes that Reading’s £20 deal works both in terms of increasing numbers at home games and “inspiring” other Championship clubs to follow suit.
Reading Deaf Football Club League Winners
Congratulations to Reading Deaf FC who have become Southern Champions of the English Deaf League, an amazing feat given this is their first season in the league!
Having been formed in 2013 with support and sponsorship from within the community, the team have represented RFC Community Trust including a number of players who have gone on to represent England and Great Britain. STAR are pleased to have been able to provide kit sponsorship for the team this season.
STAR Secures ACV Listing For The Madejski Stadium
On 13th April STAR were informed that Reading Borough Council had granted our nomination to have the Madejski Stadium listed as an Asset of Community Value. This means that should the owners ever wish to sell it STAR has the right to be informed about this and to make or be part of a bid to purchase it. STAR believes there is no present danger whatsoever of such a sale happening.
Supporters Trusts and other bodies at other clubs have been granted ACVs, notably at Old Trafford, Anfield and St James’ Park (Newcastle). In Reading some of our finer pubs and King’s Meadow Pool are also listed as ACVs.
STAR’s ‘Reading FC Hall of Fame’
In front of a packed house of STAR members, vice-presidents and guests the first eleven names were inducted into STAR’s Reading FC Hall of Fame at its launch on Thursday 24 March at the Madejski Stadium.
Among those receiving their awards in person were former skipper Graeme Murty and former chairman Roger Smee who each said a few words to the audience. Also present was 87 year old Johnny Walker, a Reading captain of the 1960s and relatives of two other inductees, Gordon Neate and Allen Foster.
“The Hall of Fame is a major project for STAR,” said Deputy Chairman, Roger Titford, “and over the next few years we expect to get up to 150 people inducted from across the whole history of the club. At first the Hall of Fame will reside on-line at STAR’s website but we hope it will get a more ‘physical’ presence as the years go by.”
Among this year’s inductees are an England international (Edward Haygarth of the 1870s), a Scotland international (Murty) and a Wales international (Ady Williams). Also featured are a war hero (Allen Foster, 1910s), a celebrity supporter (John Arlott the cricket commentator), two players who became directors (Smee and Joey Warburton) and a centre forward who the Supporters’ Club helped to buy (Tommy Tait, 1930s). To see the full list of inductees and citations please visit our Hall of Fame page.
Reading FC Accounts 2014-15
Once again we thank STAR member Dave Hunt for his expertise in simplifying, for the benefit of fans, the information in the latest set of Reading FC accounts. His report can be downloaded and read here (pdf). STAR will be addressing the company structures in a soon-to-be forthcoming issue of Reading Matter.
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Conservative MP Damian Collins' Football Governance Bill would let the Football Association block potential club owners it considered unsuitable.
The average price of the cheapest tickets across English football has risen at almost twice the rate of the cost of living since 2011. BBC Sport's Price of Football study analysed how much fans are charged at 207 clubs.