06 August 2017
Silk Pledge update
We have had a tremendous response to this year's Silk Pledge campaign with 70 pledges in already full list here
A huge thank you to all of you.
Football Supporters Federation Survey 2017 results
finally - (this article originally appeared in the When Saturday Comes newsletter section
looking at kits of yesteryear)
Macclesfield Town home, 2001-03
The design for Macclesfield's home shirt for the 2001-03 season wasn't particularly groundbreaking – slightly different material, slightly different shade of blue, yellow and white trim instead of white. The sponsor, however, was quite interesting. Having previously been sponsored by the chairman's building company FBL, to get a national haulage company was considered quite a coup.
Not content with just being named on the shirts, James Irlam repainted one of its normally red liveried lorries in the Macclesfield Town colours. The truck was used for deliveries in the local area and was parked outside the gates on matchdays, providing not just plenty of publicity but also turning its regular driver into something of a local celebrity. When we played Carlisle, Eddie Stobart (Carlisle's sponsor) sent one of their lorries and the two were parked facing each other in a mechanical Mexican stand-off.
The partnership also provided one of the club's supporters' groups, Silk Alliance, with a fund raiser when a shrewd fan persuaded Corgi to produce a limited-edition model of the truck. Underwritten by the members of the Silk Alliance, 2,000 models were produced which were snapped up by Macc fans and Corgi collectors alike. The venture raised £15,000, which was donated towards the funding of new striker Neil Robinson from Prescot Cables who had been identified by then manager David Moss as a real find.
Sadly, this was the high point. Robinson went on to make a grand total of two starts and nine substitute appearances, scoring no goals, before being shipped back to non-League, the Silk Alliance are no more and the sponsorship deal ended in 2003. Eddie Stobart won the battle of the lorries when they bought out James Irlam in 2008.
04 August 2017
SST Purchases Sit on Mower
The SST Board have have agreed to fund the purchase of a new sit on mower for Head Groundsman Gary Lewis. Gary does a terrific job keeping the pitch in top-notch condition which is vital when your team likes to play football on the ground as John's do. The SST were pleased to help.
SST Shirt Sponsorship
The SST are pleased to announce that we shall be sponsoring the home shirt of Sir John Askey and the away shirt of Number 16 Mitch Hancox for the 2017/18 season.
16 July 2017
Announcement of 2017 Elections
The rules of the Society (known as the Trust) require that one third of board positions are open for election each year and that current members of the Board stand down
in turn. Members are entitled to stand in the election and the rules governing the election can be obtained from the Secretary, David Woolliscroft, who is contactable via firstname.lastname@example.org , or
from our website http://www.sstrust.uk/sst-board/sst-board-elections/ As election results are announced at the Society AGM, and since the year end has
been changed to the end of June, the election for 2017 has been delayed so that the election results and AGM are coordinated.
The current Board is made up of ten members as follows:
Steve Mundy (Chairman) elected 2015
Myra Clark (Treasurer) elected 2015
Andrew Mellor (disability liaison) elected 2016
Marie Grundy elected 2016
Chrissie Thompson elected 2016
Bernie Rickman (Membership) Co-opted 2016
*David Woolliscroft (Secretary) elected 2014
*John Abbott elected 2014
*George Williams (Communications and Vice Chair) elected 2014
*Jon Smart elected 2014
David Woolliscroft, John Abbott, George Williams and Jon Smart (identified with an asterisk), have each completed a three year term of office: they are eligible to seek re-election.
Therefore, as the Board may have up to 12 members, there are up to 7 vacancies to be filled by election.
Board members’ duties include attending monthly meeting meetings and also additional work in supporting the following objectives
• To work with the Club to improve the matchday experience for supporters
• To provide a communication bridge between the supporters and the Club
• To be a channel for the Club to communicate to supporters
• To recruit as many members as possible so as to be truly representative of the fan base
• To identify supporters’ issues, assess them and, where appropriate, try and resolve them with the Club
• To encourage the raising of funds that are used for the benefit of supporters, the community and the Club
• To encourage supporter lead projects and, where appropriate, support them via financial, administrative and media methods
• To seek permanent SST representation in the governance structure of the Club
We hope you will consider seeking election to your Trust board. Nomination forms (available from http://www.sstrust.uk/sst-board/sst-board-elections/ , by reply to this e-mail or from the address below) must be returned, together with candidate statements, to either
by 19 August 2017 to be considered.
Should you require more information about the duties of Board members, please feel to e-mail email@example.com
9 July 2017
Another great year for the Silk Pledge!
We have had another great year for the Silk Pledge, raising £1903.70. At a time when many people are feeling the financial pinch I think that is an excellent achievement and a testament to the generosity of our pledgers See here for the full list of pledgers. A massive thank you to all our pledgers not only for your generosity but for also for paying so quickly. Also, a huge thank you to John Abbott who, while most fans are either celebrating or drowning their sorrows on a Saturday night, is analysing the stats and working out the who’s, hows and how manys for the goals scored and points obtained. A tremendous effort all round.
24 June 2017
Meeting of the SST with MTFC Chairman Mark Blower 12 June
Following a series of comments to SST board members and on the fans’ message board, the Club Chairman had been asked to meet members of the SST Board in order to add some clarity.
Concern had been expressed about the lack of signings and loss of players to other clubs. Mr Blower recalled that a number of players had returned to their home clubs; a number of players had moved to other clubs despite being offered, in most cases, significantly improved contracts; a number of signings were imminent but the extension of the season by the FA Trophy run had delayed progress on completing negotiations; a large number of players were under consideration; and finally the reported comment by one player who had moved which suggested a ‘lack of security’ were unjustified – playing staff had been paid on time, every month, as had bonuses and in every way the Club sought to do the best for the players
Reports had been seen that up to £120k had been paid to a shareholding creditor. There had been a number of instances when individuals connected to the club had made short term loans which had been repaid. Overall, since joining the Club, the debt level had been reduced to manageable levels with the exception of long term secured debts; outside the AGM an indication had been given that the large secured loans by the owner and others would be converted to shares; whilst this initiative had not formed part of the AGM itself, it had nevertheless been expressed at a meeting immediately following the AGM and reported on the SST site. SST members looked forward to the changes suggested.
All present regretted the departure of Paul and Helen Bona and paid tribute to their contribution to the club. It was expected that their replacement would be in place by the start of the new season. Barrie Darcey had decided to take a break from the club and again tribute was paid to his major contribution to the club during extremely difficult times.
A number of Season Ticket holders had expressed concern that the last game of the season had been made free entry. The decision had been an attempt to encourage some of the 3000+ purchasers of Wembley tickets to attend. The final outcome had not been as successful as hoped but average ‘spend’ per attendee had been much higher than normal.
The SST attendees thanked Mr Blower for his time and for his frank and open contribution. The SST was represented by John Abbott, Myra Clark Andy Mellor, Jon Smart, Chrissie Thompson and David Woolliscroft.
08 June 2017
Easy Fundraising breaks the £1500 barrier
Thank you to all our Easyfundraisers who have been raising funds for the SST when they shop on line. You have now raised over £1500 since we started the scheme, which includes an amazing £420 since the beginning of last August.
28 May 2017
Women at the Game organisation launched.
A new campaign was launched by Jacqui Forster, formerly of Supporters Direct, last Thursday evening at the Hotel Football next to Old Trafford.
The idea behind it is to give women their first taste of live football in a supportive environment or to create a friends’ group for women to be together who are seasoned match-goers who are not comfortable in the usual male dominated crowd – going in an all-female group that’s supportive and welcoming.
Forster, an Altrincham FC fan, was diagnosed with terminal cancer in February 2015 and is using some money that friends raised for her to get this project up and running.
“I simply want to enable more women to feel happy going to watch sport, particularly men’s football,” says Jacqui. “I think that meeting other women before the game in a non-threatening venue, like a café, entering the ground together and wherever possible spending the match with their new found friends and even travelling home together will make more women of all backgrounds, ethnicity and religion more likely to give Going to the Footie a go. This is really about making friends with other women who support the same club.
A number of football events have already taken place but having worked with a number of other sports Jacqui would like to see the idea spread across to the likes of Rugby League, Speedway etc.
Targeting areas of the community to try and encourage them to get involved with their local Club is not new, MTFC regularly give tickets to local schools, however this is the first time we have heard of a drive with the intention of encouraging women and we wish Jacqui all the best.
At the suggestion of our auditor, the SST has changed its accounting period to finish at the end of June, rather than at the end of January, to bring it into line with the football season. The January date was previously used because that was when the SST was formed in 2006.
This in turn means that our AGM will take now place in November so that the accounts and Annual Report can be prepared and audited.
14 May 2017
Key points from the AGM 05/05/2017
Change of Articles of Association
· A minimum of one Director can constitute a quorum (replaces 5)
· An AGM need not be held every year (to bring the Articles into line with the Company Law of 2006)
· Conversion of loans to shares
There are plans to convert £1,870,000 of loans to the Club into shares
These loans comprise
£1.4 million from Ramy Ltd
471,000 from Andy Scott, Jeremy Turner and Mike Rance
This will leave loans of just under £300,000 owing to Ramy Ltd.
Following the conversion, a percentage of the shares will be awarded to the following people
10% Barry Darcie
10% Mark Blower
5% John Askey
The full details of these transactions will be finalised over the next few months.
Meeting after the AGM
Present: Mr A Alkadhi, Mr M Blower (Chair MTFC), Mr SJ Mundy (Chair SST) and members of SST and shareholders
Opening. SJM thanked AA and MB for their agreement to meet SST members following the Club AGM. A recent SST survey had identified a number of issues fans wished to see addressed – these ranged from various ground improvements (some of which had been partly or wholly funded by the SST) and a specific request to open discussions with AA. SST members had been invited to submit points at issue and these had been forwarded to AA via MB.
1) At your last meeting with fans you said you would sell the club for £1, with the lack of investment recently why have you not sold the club?
2) For the team to move forward investment in players is needed. After promising at a meeting last season you said you would provide money if there was a play-off chance, we did have a chance at one stage but no additional money was provided for us to take the opportunity. Are you relying on supporters, who already pay into the club via gate receipts, season tickets etc. to finance the team with further donations, which has happened this season.
AA refuted that there had been a lack of investment and drew attention to the AGM 14/15 and 15/16 accounts, which showed an operating loss, which had been covered by loans to the Club. Funds had also been made available in the 16/17 season to assist with the purchase of a striker but despite numerous attempts the Club had not been able to sign a suitable player.
MB drew attention to the 2016 accounts which showed a shortfall in the balance sheet but this as at a much more sustainable level than previously. Informally, it was expected that the 2017 financial report would show a near breakeven position, a sustainable and manageable level of trade creditors and fully up to date HMRC and VAT liabilities.
3) As you do not attend matches, what is your interest in Macclesfield Town FC
4) What is your vision for the club over the next 5 years, and what actions are in the works to support this vision?
AA reminded those that present that he did not live in the UK and also that he preferred to take a low profile in the business management of the club leaving such matters in the hands of the Operating Committee. He paid tribute to MB for his close management of financial matters within the club the success of which could be seen in the various financial statements approved by the AGM. AA though that five years was too long for a realistic business plan but the forward plan for the next three years looked to underscore stability which would hope fully lead to even greater success on the pitch.
4) Assuming that a prospective buyer or buyers of the football club meet your financial requirements, what are the qualities that a prospective buyer(s) of the football club would need to possess and how do you expect that the buyer(s) to demonstrate these qualities and intentions?
There had been two serious expressions of interest in a club takeover. One had been rejected but a second was still in discussion. AA reiterated his previous position – there would only be a change of ownership if such a change was in the best interests of the club and its future. The current position might result in a significant minority shareholder being introduced to the benefit of the club.
5) What is the situation with regards to the Freehold?
The freehold to the ground held by Cheshire East was still subject to the buy-back condition until 2018 but it was fully expected that this could be extended and there was still a commitment to the development of a new stadium.
6) Is it possible to have a note of the Board Members, it is very unusual to have only one Director. What constitutes a Quorum at a meeting? Is there a CEO?
The reason for the lack of Directors was to do with the financial situation of the Club. As that situation stabilises it is hoped that it will be possible to change that position. Referring back to the AGM, it was made clear that the changes to the Articles of Association were intended to bring them into line with current business law. The change also allows the presence of one director to constitute a quorum.
The plans to allocate shares to various individuals would help dilute the majority shareholding and the conversion of debt to shares would improve the financial position of the club effectively improving the ‘worth’ of issued shares.
The Club Operating Committee is as follows, Chairman Mark Blower, General Manager Rob Heyes, Hospitality Manager Helen Bona, Operational Barrie Darcey, Legal (as/when required) Jon Mail, Commercial Andy Scott, Club Secretary Julie Briggs.
T7th May 2017
The John Askey shirt auction raised £40. Thank you to Julia for donating the shirt and Matthew Todd for the winning bid.
1st May 2017
Although the season is now over, the SST will continue to work on behalf of the fans and the Club over the Close Season. As always, you can find regular updates here.
Club AGM 5th May
The SST will be attending the Club AGM as shareholders and will be providing an update to our members.
As part of our constitution, approximately a third of our twelve Board members must stand down each year and put themselves up for re-election. We also currently have two places vacant. If you think you would like to become more involved in the running of the SST or would like more information then please get in contact with us. The Board Meetings are at 7.45pm on the second Monday of every month in the McIlroy Suite.
The election announcement will be published on our website, social media and via e-mail towards the end of May.
16 April 2017
We currently have 132 members on our books. It would be nice if we could have more, however I noticed that until recently Leyton Orient Fans’ Trust, whose Club’s average attendances are two to three times bigger than ours, had a membership of 180. That all changed when their Club received a winding up order and they have now gone up to well over a 1000 members. Fortunately, MTFC are not in that position so our membership is probably a fair reflection of our fan base. There are similarities between Supporters Trusts and Unions, one of which being that there tends to be an increase in membership when the going gets tough. However, the SST still needs members to sustain it during the relatively stable times and I would therefore like to say a big thank you to all those of you who continue to support us.
SST Just for fun He's behind you! Also, what's with the privet hedge in a football stadium?
28 March 2017
Silk Pledge Update (pre York Fixture)
It’s been a few days of real highs and lows. The joys of supporting the Silkmen! After the euphoria of Prenton Park and the great performance at Chester (with Andy Halls' first ever goal for the Blues), once again on Saturday our league home form was a huge disappointment.
That said the pledge stands at a healthy £1531.65 after the Aldershot game and with 11 games to go, including our exciting trip to Wembley , we can still hit our £2000 target. Thanks as ever for the continued support. Full list of pledges and pledgers here
25 March 2017
Player of the Year Awards Evening 29th April 2017
The SST have once again agreed to purchase the trophies for this year's Player of the Year Awards (other than the Wraggs to Riches trophy which is kindly donated by Richard Swallow). SST Disabilities Liaison Officer Andy Mellor will also be presenting his annual award for endeavour, which was last year won by Kristian Dennis.
Tickets are still available but are going fast and are very reasonably priced at £10 for adults and £5 for juniors which includes food. Special guest Steve Payne will be presenting the awards and it is always a great night. Call Phil on 07849194125 to get your ticket.
Overheard - Dulwich Fans speak highly of their visit to Moss Rose.
Due to a long standing arrangement to visit my father and other family members down south, I missed the glory of the Silkmen's magnificent victory at Prenton Park. Having seen every other tie, including the away trips to Sudbury and Dulwich, it was disappointing not to be there but family will always come first. However, as Dulwich Hamlet were playing at the local Club Tonbridge Angels, and as their fans had been so welcoming at Champion Hill, we decided to go along and support them.
The Hamlet fans were in good voice, good humour and good numbers, but more importantly it was good to hear some of their fans saying how much they had enjoyed their visit to the Moss Rose, what a friendly Club it was and how their coach party was greeted by the Chairman on arrival.
12 March 2017
28 February 2017
19th February 2017
More hot air from the SST!
As part of our response to the issues raised in last year's survey, we have paid to have the two broken hot air hand driers in the Star Lane Ladies' toilets and the two old ones in the Star Lane Gents' toilets replaced.
We are continuing to work through the large number of issues raised in the survey and are working with the Club to improve the Match Day experience for fans.
5th Feb 2017
The Super Silk Lotto – Two years on
Andy Worth first told me of his idea of creating a local lottery to raise funds for the Football Club many years ago and before I was on the Board of the SST. He thought it would be more appealing to the fans of Macclesfield than the national Gold Bond draw; that it would attract people from the local community and that it would be more successful than the Gold Bond. I told him that the logistics and work in running such a lottery would be huge. Now, just over two years on from its inception, I think I can say that we were both right.
The Lotto currently has 245 members with a £100-00 prize draw taking place every Friday. It is currently paying £500 a month into the Football Club (more than the Gold Bond did) and has also paid out over £10,500 in prizes. It has also made two donations to local charities, David Lewis and Ollie’s Army and this year is raising money for Space4Autism.
The other difference between the Super Silk Lotto and the Gold Bond is that the Super Silk Lotto is a not for profit lottery run solely by volunteers. In the background, making sure that everything runs smoothly, Andy has the dedicated support of a number of individuals. This includes Marie Grundy (SST) and Robert Stirling (former general manager of MTFC) who oversee the draws, rules and membership lists; Myra Clark (SST) who organises the lottery licence, the prize cheques and banks the cash and last, but by no means least, John Abbott (SST) who has the unenviable task of keeping track of the nearly £26,000 that has been collected by the lottery since November 2014 and what has been paid and to whom.
The Super Silk Lotto has been a terrific success and it is great that the SST has been able to assist Andy in seeing his vision come to fruition.
Interested in joining the lottery? It costs just £1 a week. Entry forms, rules and the latest winners can be found here or forms can be obtained from the Club Office or by e-mailing firstname.lastname@example.org
24 January 2017
Silk Pledge -
After the very disappointing performance and result against Guiseley , the pledge stands at £1066.95. Let’s hope we can get back on track at North Ferriby on Saturday and really make a move towards those playoffs.
We have had a few pledge changes following the departures of Jack Mackreth, Paul Lewis and Jack Sampson and the new loan arrivals. If anyone else wants to change please let me know.
As well as keeping track of Alty’s dire results, I will now have to keep a close eye on Chorley’s games. A couple of pledgers want to keep faith in Jack Sampson in his loan period over there. You never know the move may just give him the confidence he needs.
COYB! Full List of Pledges
Easy Fundraising - £266.22 raised since July 31st.
Our sincere thanks to all those of you who are taking part.
22 January 2017
SST adds its support to Petition for an Independent Inquiry
As we're sure you've read in recent weeks, many shocking allegations of child abuse within football have come to light. The survivors of the abuse have joined forces with MPs, legal experts, and child protection groups to call upon Parliament to establish an independent inquiry into the allegations. The Supporters' Trust have added its name to the petition letter which will be sent to the House of Commons Home Affairs Committee asking for an independent inquiry.
15 January 2017
“Souvenirs From Home” football exhibition celebrates Macclesfield’s silk heritage!
An unlikely combination of football and craft have provided the inspiration for an exhibition which includes specially created silk football shirts made by Silkmen fans. The exhibition is the culmination of Home Ground, a national project which celebrates the cultural heritage of football clubs with nicknames inspired by the local craft industries that have shaped their communities.
Silkmen supporters (including members of the SST) took part in workshops with artist Zoe Hillyard to create one-off “souvenirs” reflecting the silk industry which gave the city’s football club its nickname.
The workshops explored the participants’ experience of being Silkmen fans and living in Macclesfield, while collections of local silk at the Silk Museum and Adamley Textiles provided inspiration. Silkmen supporters created a series of souvenir football shirts, inspired by the idea of a signed football shirt as a treasured possession. Fans also made a collection of silk covered buttons, inspired by Macclesfield’s prolific silk button production, which was established in the sixteenth century. Mother and baby groups, match-day visitors, behind the scenes club catering staff and players all left their mark on silk fabric which was used it to cover individual buttons.
Specially for the exhibition, artist Zoe Hillyard created ‘The Silkmen Cup’, to celebrate the town’s silk heritage and reflect the football club’s determination and strength. The Cup is made using Zoe’s own special technique – ‘ceramic patchwork’ – where she covers individual ceramic fragments in silk which she reassembles by stitching the pieces together.
The use of pottery and silk together takes on a particular resonance as the inaugural match played under the name Macclesfield Town Football Club, in 1876, was against Stoke City - The Potters. These teams, which grew out of their respective trades, clash again in Zoë’s celebratory piece through the mix of silk and ceramics.
The S.S.T. would not exist without your support. Please join us and help to make a difference to your football club. You can find the forms that you need to join here.
The Silkmen Supporters’ Trust is committed to the improvement and development of Macclesfield Town FC by working in partnership with the Club, the fans and the community to the mutual benefit of all.
Silkmen Supporters' Trust
c/o Macclesfield Town FC, London Road, SK11 7SP
If you have ideas about fundraising for SST, projects that SST could get involved in or suggestions for the website please contact SST via our Contact page
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