Kilmarnock Supporters Survey

We are currently in the midst of running a quick survey before Christmas, you may be aware of it already if you follow us on Twitter or Facebook or maybe you heard about it on West FM yesterday (Thursday) during their sports bulletins. We want to find out what the Killie supporters feel about what is happening at our football club. In recent year there has been a lot of talk about how the club is being run. So we thought it would be a good idea to ask the people that have the most invested in the club. The supporters.

We put the survey on the internet so we could reach the large and originally had planned to close it at midday on Friday the 20th of December which is today, however this has been postponed to the New Year to allow as many fans as possible the chance to have their say.

Please take the time to complete the survey as we really want to hear your views.

https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/LQPZRXZ

Thank you.

AGM Q&A – Myth Busters

During our tenth AGM on Monday last (9th December) it was put to the Trust Board that there is a lot of misinformation doing the rounds and it would be a good idea to put to bed some of the myths that appear to be causing division within our support; something we could well do without at this time. We caught up with the Trust chairman after the meeting and asked him directly about some of the more contentious subjects that Killie fans have been discussing of late.

What exactly is happening with the Community Ownership Group? 

COGlogoThrough the various mediums we’ve been putting stuff out about COG all year and I’m pretty sure most Killie fans are aware of it at least. The situation regards ownership of the club appears to be a state of constant fluctuation at the moment so it is difficult to pinpoint exactly where we are with COG other than to say that regardless of who is in charge at Rugby Park, the Trust will continue to push for community ownership in the long term.

There has been a lot of publicity on the back of the open meeting held by the Supporters’ Association at the Grand Hall…the upshot of which was the formation of a working party of various groups who also want to deliver community ownership to the club. Obviously the Trust has been heavily involved with that and we have four board members nominated to represent our interests at the table. As seems to be the case these days we had to sign a non-disclosure agreement to be party to the talks and can’t discuss anything in real detail, but as ever we still aim to get as much information out there to our members as possible and see it as one of our duties to encourage the working party to engage with the fans and keep them up to speed with anything that is going on.

To be fair there is not much to report at the moment other than what has appeared in the media already. We asked the Kilmarnock Futures Consortium, who are part of the working party, to give us something for the purposes of the AGM which may make their position clearer and were sent the following statement: “Kilmarnock Futures Consortium is committed to immediate supporter representation on the new Board and believes that community shareholding would have significant benefits to the Club, the supporters and to the wider East Ayrshire community. The Consortium will work with Supporters Direct to build options and plans for greater community ownership over an agreed period”.

That’s where we are at the moment. It has been widely reported that while the club are negotiating with the KF Consortium that they are still working behind the scenes on a plan to get debt reduction from the bank in a similar manner to other Scottish clubs whom have recently almost went to the wall. The one major difference it would seem is that Mr Johnston is only willing to implement some form of “community involvement”, as he calls it, on his own terms and his refusal to engage with the two largest democratically elected supporter’s organisations will make it very difficult for him to make any headway with the bank. We push on with COG regardless and maintain that while debt reduction is a good thing, that the only beneficiary of a deal with the bank should be Kilmarnock Football Club, not any individual.

Is it true that the Killie Trust are in league with the Klin Group and want to sell Rugby Park for housing and move to the new HALO Arena?

In a word, no. The Klin Group had a viable plan to turn things around at the club and introduce community ownership to it over a sustained period of time as their legacy to the people of Kilmarnock. The Trust bought into that and supported it at the time because it was the best viable option on the table to ensure the club not only survived but flourished and it ticked a lot of boxes as far as we were concerned on the community front.

Our primary concern is the club’s future and we are willing to talk to anyone who is looking to restore Kilmarnock FC’s place at the heart of the community where it should be and make it a sustainable entity that we can all continue to be proud of. That is why we are currently in discussions with the Kilmarnock Futures Consortium, their plans also merit consideration and should the current regime come up with a plan that does not involve individuals financially benefiting at the expense of the club then we would certainly look into that too.

Moving the club to the HALO Arena from Rugby Park has never been a topic of discussion at Trust Board Meetings, the Klin Group have previously stated that was not their intention either. We view it for what it is, an impressive plan for a state-of the-art multi-use stadium which our whole community can benefit from. In our case we thought that it would be perfect for bringing team training back to our own area and put a stop to paying for facilities in Glasgow to keep the squad in shape.

Are the Trust behind the “Not a Penny More” movement?

Again, no. At no stage have we ever encouraged fans not to go to Rugby Park or to stop putting money into the club. I never have and never will do that personally and I would have to seriously consider my position with the Trust if at some point that was the road the members chose to take. The sad fact is that attendances in Scottish football have been declining for years now, and we are one of the most affected. The slightly elevated downturn in figures this season can most likely be attributed to the reaction of fans to events on and off the park towards the tail end of last season and into this.

I find it incredulous that anyone would try and lay the blame for falling attendances at our door. People have minds of their own and make decision for themselves based on their own circumstances and what they believe. We are not in the business of telling people what to do, our business is to ensure that the fans get proper representation when it comes to the running of the club and that whoever is in charge is held accountable for their actions. There are many reasons why fans have stopped going, too many to mention, sadly it does not look as if the decline in numbers will stop until there have been some sort of regime change at the club that will make fans feel as if they belong again and its still their club.

Is your plan to force the club into administration to get rid of Michael Johnston?

I’ve honestly never heard anything quite so ridiculous, but it is another popular myth doing the rounds, and one which the chairman himself has recently suggested. It is simply not true and has never crossed our minds, despite being advised by some parties that a “newco” club would be a much easier solution to our problems. We want to avoid the club going into administration at all costs. We have learned a lot from the mistakes of other clubs and other Trusts and we would never want to put our proud history at risk by flirting with financial skulduggery to achieve our aims.

If we were in favour of an administration event why would we be accumulating shares in the club which would ultimately prove worthless? We doubled our holding this season, albeit courtesy of a generous benefactor, and are constantly on the lookout for more; in fact if anyone out there feels that their shares would be of more use as part of a collective run in a democratic fashion then please feel free to get in touch. Setting up shell corporations and selling or transferring assets while hiding behind a myriad of non-disclosure agreements is not the way we want to operate; we have and always will be open and transparent and if we really thought that administration was an option then we would come right out and say it.

 

Have you got anything to ask the Trust Chairman or the Trust Board? We believe in transparency and honesty and are keen to dispel any dodgy rumours doing the rounds. Send your questions directly to thechairman@killietrust.org if you would like a personal reply or indeed just post them on our Twitter or Facebook pages and we will do our best to make sure that you get an answer.

Winter Membership Drive

Trust10aDear Killie Fan,

On behalf of the Killie Trust Board I would like to take this opportunity to thank you for your support over the last year.

While the Trust continues to strive to gain supporter influence in the running of the club, it has also been involved in a number of local initiatives with the aim of bringing the community and the football club closer together. Sadly such initiatives are proving particularly challenging in the current climate. These activities would not be possible without your contributions and those of like-minded supporters.

Here is where you can help. We are looking to significantly increase The Killie Trust membership numbers and need your help in doing so. With Christmas fast approaching, why not gift a membership to your friends and family? In addition, the member who signs up the most new Adult Members will receive a prize of £100 cash – donated by The Killie Trust Board.

It couldn’t be simpler to get friends and family involved and all you need is to give us a bit of contact information for each potential member and we will do the rest.

Just download (simply click) and fill out the Quick Slip at the foot of this email with two pieces of information. Firstly the persons name and secondly, either their postcode and house number, phone number or email address of each person who would join, then either email it to membership@killietrust.org or post a hard copy to The Kilmarnock Supporters’ Society Ltd., PO Box 26103, Kilmarnock, KA1 1YN and we’ll take it from there. Each submitted name will then be contacted and each Adult Member who joins as a result, will count towards the possible prize.

The Essential Info on Memberships:

Annual membership costs are:

Adult £10; Juniors (Under 16) free.

Of course, outwith the quickslip you can simply become a member right here right now online or through the post.

If you are not a current member, there are three ways in which you can renew your membership:

  1. Renew online at The Killie Trust website www.killietrust.org/?id=join
  2. Print off the form from the website, complete and send to the PO box address above.
  3. Contact us at membership@killietrust.org and we will contact you to collect your details.

In each case a standing order option is available should you wish to have your annual renewal processed automatically – see Additional Notes on the membership form. Standing Order renewals are, of course, our preferred option as it reduces our administration costs.

As always, if you have any questions in relation to the Trust or your membership, please do not hesitate to get in touch.

Regards

Barry Richmond

Chairman

Killie_Trust_Quick_Slip