Heritage Walk

walkers

Fancy a walk around Kilmarnock town centre, visit a few pubs, have a few drinks and learn lots of things about the town while you do so?

Well, local Historians Gary Torbett, Graham Boyd and Stuart Wilson are here to help you out by leading a heritage walk in and around Kilmarnock town centre on the evening of Thursday 27th August with any proceeds being handed over to the Killie Trust.

In Gary’s own words:

“The walk will be over a fairly short walking distance, will take in a few town centre bars AND you will learn a wee bit about the town’s history….I hope.

A sort of educational pub crawl.

The plan is to start at Fanny By Gaslight at 5.30 / 6pm for a beer (you buy your own BTW) and then head down The Strand, through The Cross, down Sandbed, along St Marnock Street, up Bank Street and along College Wynd to John Finnie Street.

The walk will visit 6 bars along the way so you will have a varied view of the pubs in Killie!! However the point is to get folk out walking, learning and spending a few quid in the town.

The walk is free of charge – like I say, bring your beer money – but I will collect discretionary donations at the end which I will pass to The Killie Trust.”

If you would like any more information don’t hesitate to contact the Trust here, or on facebook or twitter.

From The Archives: FFTF Crossbar Challenge

000_0051At half time of the last home game of the 2003/2004 season 10 Killie fans donned their boots and took to the Rugby Park pitch to promote the recently introduced Fifty for the Future scheme by having a go at the “crossbar challenge” which was made famous on Sky Sports “Soccer AM” TV show. If you aren’t familiar with it, each person has to strike a dead ball from the centre spot (or edge of the centre circle in this case) and hit the crossbar. Quite simple really…..but also really hard.

Though not a fund raiser it was used to embed the idea of FFTF firmly in everyone’s mind. Judging by the success over the course of that scheme, I would say it worked.

000_0050000_0049000_0047000_0048000_0046000_0044000_0045Oh and no one managed to hit the bar, not unlike the TV version most weeks.000_0043

From The Archives: Grand in your Hand (+ Diary)

379923_10150576691074899_754431406_nAs 2011 drew to a close we launched an initiative to both boost membership as well as send one lucky member home from the Dundee United match considerably richer than they turned up, £1000 richer to be exact. The draw was for all current trust members, either long term or newly signed up, their membership numbers put in a bucket and at halftime of said match our Chairman Barry Richmond braved the cold and stood in the centre circle with bucket in hand to draw the winning entry.

306673_10151478821009899_1930681168_nStephen Carolan had the winning number and had an extra £1000 that Christmas. Here he is getting his picture taken post match with his prize alongside Trust board members Davie Davidson and Nigel Fitzsimmons.

diary06Also as a bonus this Christmas, here is a nice little item. The Trust diary from 2006 which was on sale for £2 with proceeds going to the Trust.

I am sure it found its way onto a few Killie fans lists for santa list for Santa.

Notice of Annual General Meeting

Notice is hereby given the Annual General Meeting of the Kilmarnock Supporters’ Society Limited will be held in the Howard Centre, Portland Street, Kilmarnock on

Wednesday 26th November 2014 at 7.00pm prompt.

Agenda
1) Introduction.
2) Apologies
3) Last AGM minutes
4) Chairman’s report
5) Treasurer’s Report and Financial Statement.
6) Reappointment of W White & Co as Auditors to the Society.
7) Elections to the Board/announcement of results.
8) Trust objectives 2015.
9) Any Other Business.
10) Close

By order of the Board

Nigel Fitzsimmons
(Secretary)

Kilmarnock Supporters’ Society Ltd
Registered Office: Duncan McLean & Co, 81 John Finnie Street,Kilmarnock, KA1 1BG

Notes:

A member entitled to attend and vote at the Annual General Meeting is entitled to appoint a proxy to attend and vote in their place. Such a proxy need not be a member of the Society. The appointment of a proxy should be in writing to the Secretary, and in order to be valid, the form of proxy must be received by the secretary not less than 48 hours before the time fixed for the holding of the meeting or any adjourned meeting. Valid forms of proxy arriving at the PO Box address by close of business 2 days prior to the meeting will be deemed to satisfy the above criteria. Completed forms should be returned to the Secretary at PO Box 26103, Kilmarnock, KA1 1YN before 5pm on Monday 24th November 2014. No person other than the Chair of the meeting can act as proxy for more than 3 members.

Upcoming Event: Stand Up (If You Love Billy) Comedy Night 8

This November get yourself along to the Sports Bar for some brilliant stand up comedy. Your eyes are not deceiving you, there is a deliberate typo in the artwork as we are returning to our spiritual home for “Stand Up (If You Love Billy) 8″…and as such have afforded a nod to KFC’s main man Billy Bowie for making that possible.

On compere duties is friend of the Trust Ray Bradshaw for his third tour of duty at the Sports Bar, Ray has been entertaining audiences up and down Britain this year so its great to have him back corralling this bunch…

Mark Nelson, who as well as being one of the most sought after acts on the Scottish circuit could also have been seen during the summer on BBC1 presenting Don’t Drop the Baton and heard on Radio Scotland in his show “Mark Nelson’s guide to Marriage”.

Chris Forbes who supported Kevin Bridges on tour in 2012 and has been a staple in the comedy tents at Rockness and T in the Park recently.

Jim Smith, who in September this year came third in the annual Scottish Comedian of the year competition, Jim is a Perthshire farmer and along with Colin McCreadie and Stuart Cosgrove constitutes St Johnstone’s entire fan base.

Lastly of course, and back yet again, is our home grown talent, John Speirs, who probably wont be entirely happy with the photo on the poster and gets a wee bit grouchy if you spell his name wrong.

Again, thanks in advance for continuing to support these nights. The ticket price remains a paltry £15 for a plethora of top acts and can be purchased by calling Peter on 0742 961 5232 or by following the links on our website, COG Blog, Facebook, Twitter etc. to the Eventbrite page for the event (or just click the picture below).

Hope to see you all soon…

StandUpWebAd

Cheque Handed over at Stand Up (If You Love Killie) 7

StandUpWebAd7Last month saw our 7th Stand Up night go off without a hitch at The Rugby Club in Kilmarnock, and we handed over the cheque to the Laurie and Ellie fund. But more on that later.

A full house enjoyed some great acts off the Scottish comedy scene. Compere Graham Mackie kept things going all night and enriched everyones lives with his first encounter with an exfoliating glove. John Gavin set us off with a great set including his hatred of foxes, lucky for him it wasn’t squirrels. John Speirs then enlightened the crowd with his story about the time he never met Hollywood actor Vince Vaughn before Jojo Sutherland closed the second section with tales from her life on the east coast. Des Clarke then took the roof off Bellsdale with a brilliant headline set where he talked about absolutely everything, including the time he actually met Hollywood actor James MacAvoy.

clarke jgavin jojo mackie

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A brilliant night which actually started on a high when Ellie, Laurie and their mum visited to pick up the cheque for £1412 from The Killie Trust. The evening in the Kilmarnocks Rugby Club raised £1000 for the appeal. The further £412 was raised at Rugby Park, when before the match versus Hearts members of the Trust board were out rattling buckets and got a great response from the fans in attendance. A huge thanks from the Trust to all those in attendance on the night as well as those who did their bit at the Hearts game. Also a huge thanks again to John Gall at Brownings for the half time fayre.Ellie&Laurie

Hope to see you all at the next one.

Stand Up (If You Love Killie) 7

StandUpWebAd7We are back! 25th April is the date for your diaries and we are in a new venue for this one, The Kilmarnock Rugby Club out on the Queens Drive. So its new surroundings but no change for the rest, the price remains the same and the standard too as we are bringing more top drawer comedy to Killie town.

For this one we have the brilliant Des Clarke (@des_clarke), who as well as being one of Scotlands top comics is also the host of Capital FM’s breakfast show, the supremely talented Jojo Sutherland ( @jojosutherland) who has pretty much played every British comedy club you could care to mention plus ones abroad too. Also we have 2009s Scottish Comedian of the Year, the awesome John Gavin (@johngavincomedy) and Graham Mackie ( @graham19590) who not only will be the funniest guy you have ever seen that looks like Santa but will inexplicably be able to name one of your old teachers from the school. Completing the line up and back to complete a hat trick of outings at our comedy nights is local act John Speirs ( @johnspeirsii), all in all a terrific evenings worth of entertainment in store.

As already mentioned, ticket price remains £15 for all those top acts and can be purchased by calling 07429615232 or by following links on our website, blog, facebook, twitter etc to our eventbrite site for the event. The night is in conjuction with the Rugby Club to help raise some funds for them and the Killie Trust will be donating our funds raised to the Laurie Finlayson Appeal, more details of which can be found here: http://www.justgiving.com/Ellie-Laurie?utm_source=Twitter&utm_medium=fundraisingpage&utm_content=Ellie-Laurie&utm_campaign=pfp-tweet-mobile.

So there it is, avoid the scrum and get your tickets quick, with such a great line up these nights sell out fast! See you all there, April 25th.

Link to online ticket sales here:  https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/killie-trust-comedy-night-7-tickets-10742630497

Notice of A.G.M.

Trust10aNotice is hereby given the Annual General Meeting of the Kilmarnock Supporters’ Society Limited will be held in the Dean Suite, Park Hotel, Kilmarnock on Monday 9th December 2013 at 7.15pm prompt.

Agenda

1 Introduction.
2 Apologies
3 Last AGM minutes
4 Chairman’s report
5 Treasurer’s Report and Financial Statement.
6 Reappointment of W White & Co as Auditors to the Society.
7 Elections to the Board/announcement of results.
8 Trust objectives 2014.
9 Any Other Business.
10 Close

By order of the Board

Nigel Fitzsimmons
Secretary
Kilmarnock Supporters’ Society Ltd
Registered Office:
Duncan McLean & Co, 81 John Finnie Street,Kilmarnock, KA1 1BG

Notes
A member entitled to attend and vote at the Annual General Meeting is entitled to appoint a proxy to attend and vote in their place. Such a proxy need not be a member of the Society. The appointment of a proxy should be in writing to the Secretary, and in order to be valid, the form of proxy must be received by the secretary not less than 48 hours before the time fixed for the holding of the meeting or any adjourned meeting. Valid forms of proxy arriving at the PO Box address by close of business 2 days prior to the meeting will be deemed to satisfy the above criteria.

A copy of the standard form of proxy is attached to this letter. Completed forms should be returned to the Secretary at PO Box 26103, Kilmarnock, KA1 1YN before 5pm on Saturday 7th December 2013. No person other than the Chair of the meeting can act as proxy for more than 3 members.

Admissions to the Annual General Meeting of any shareholder or proxy entitled to attend will be on production of this notice.

The Kilmarnock Supporters’ Society Ltd (The Killie Trust)

An Industrial and Provident Society registered with the Financial Services Authority

Register Number 2620RS

Its Good To Talk

Last week during discussions with the KFCSA committee, we suggested that it would be a good idea to invite Paul Goodwin (Head of Supporters’ Direct Scotland) along to their open meeting on our behalf due to his experience in dealing with clubs with problems like ours and his expertise in governance and community ownership; along with our own board member Andy Millar who obviously has a better handle on things from our perspective. Mr Goodwin graciously agreed to give his time, despite the fact it wasn’t primarily a Trust meeting, as part of his remit with SDS is to help out wherever possible when clubs are deemed to be in trouble.

Mr Goodwin has subsequently received a request from Michael Johnston, Chairman of Kilmarnock FC, to meet with himself and new director William Bowie on the proviso that the talks would take place prior to the KFCSA open meeting on Thursday. The invitation was extended to a couple of representatives from both the Trust and the KFCSA, but unfortunately it has been arranged at too short notice for that to happen in the time frame requested. We have offered to meet with the club directors at the earliest possible convenience for all parties and hope that a reply to our legal representatives and the verification of our recent share acquisition is on the agenda.

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A Decade of Trust

How did it come to this?                       Trust10a

The Killie Trust was initated, as many were, after a group of fans attended the launch of Supporters Direct Scotland at Tynecastle in 2002. The Killie Trust was started a year later in 2003. Kilmarnock were in a period of relative success and everything appeared on the surface to be going in the right direction. The club had gained promotion to the Premier League in 1993 under Tommy Burns. The redevelopment of Rugby Park was completed in 1994 making it an all seated stadium with a capacity of just over 18,000. The club won the Scottish Cup in 1997 and was then involved in European competitions in four of the next five years. In order to diversify income streams the club board decided to build a four star hotel on the site of the training pitch at Rugby Park. Most fans could see the logic of this decision when there was a successful hotelier on the club board. The Park Hotel opened in June 2002.  So things appeared to be going well, but fans were already aware of being marginalised and were concerned by the amount of borrowing required to build the hotel.

A change of leadership at the club in 1997 had seen the charismatic Bobby Fleeting leave the club. With him went the sense that fans would be listened to and in its place came a view from the board that fans should be seen and not heard. New income streams and the rise and rise of TV money appeared to fool a lot of clubs into believing that the need to engage with their supporters was no longer important. Kilmarnock was as guilty of this as any other club in Scotland.

In 2005, Jamie Moffat resigned as chairman and sold the club and his 86% shareholding in it to solicitor Michael Johnston for one pound. Part of this deal was that there would be no more money to bolster the club from the Moffat family. Changes to company law in the UK have made it legal to allow the board of Kilmarnock Football Club to dwindle to just one member.

Where are we now?                           COGlogo

Over recent years the chairman of Kilmarnock Football Club and sole board member Michael Johnston has made a number of deeply unpopular decisions, which appeared to have been taken with little or no regard for supporters’ views or wishes.  With no sign of new investment or ownership on the horizon the Trust launched the Community Ownership Group (COG) in June 2012. The principle behind COG is to develop ownership of the club as a partnership between the supporters and the local business community, putting the club at the very heart of the community in every way possible. The long term goal is 51% ownership by the supporters and 49% owned by a range of local businesses.

The sacking of Kenny Sheils, the popular but controversial manager, who had delivered the League Cup for the first time in the club’s history and broke a 57 year spell without a win at Celtic Park was the straw that broke the camel’s back for many.

Kenny had publicly stated that he had a vision for youth development at the club and a five year plan to make that vision a reality. In contrast the chairman stated at the club AGM in January 2013 that he “did not have a business plan as the environment was too dynamic”. Most football supporters understand the importance of youth develop to their clubs and the loss of someone with a long term strategic view was very hard to take.

However it is unlikely that this event alone could have caused the reaction it has with the majority of supporters. It is the cumulative effect of the chairman’s poor decisions over the years that has generated it. As a result a grassroots campaign sprang up to oust the chairman. Supporters’ protests have taken many forms: some have not purchased season tickets and will not attend any home games; some have cancelled gym membership; others will not spend a penny at KFC, the Park Hotel or the club shop until the club is in new ownership (#notapennymore). These are drastic and painful decisions that are being taken by life-long Killie supporters. The protest has been symbolised by Blue and Yellow scarfs and T-shirts with a variety of polite slogans asking Mr Johnston to move on.

Short and long term objectives

The Killie Trust, The KFCSA and supporters’ short term aims are to persuade Mr Johnston to do what is best for the club before it is too late. Offers have been made but they have been rejected for reasons that are not entirely clear. In the longer term the Trust aims to initiate and develop a process that will take the club into a genuinely democratic form of community ownership. This model will ultimately lead to a stronger more sustainable club that considers the community in everything it does.  Without the community the club is nothing.

Where do we go from here               Buy a brick at Rugby Park

The Trust has had representatives at a number of events in recent weeks: the Supporters’ Summit 2013 held at St Georges Park; the Scottish Fans’ Summit on Club Ownership and the Supporters Direct Scotland Cup at East End Park. At all of these events we discovered that you will never get all the supporters to agree (football is all about opinions after all). You can only hope to work with the active supporters that are able to put their shoulder to the wheel to help save their club. However when the crisis strikes the vast majority of fans will give what they can to help save their club and that is what makes the difference. Despite what they have been told, fans hold all the power at any football club.

The Killie Trust’s greatest hope is that Kilmarnock Football Club can avoid the same fate as Dunfermline and Hearts and transition to a new ownership model that will bring community ownership without the need for administration, as this is a messy, expensive and uncertain business.

What’s going on?

It is expected that Killie supporters will make their feelings felt about the chairman peacefully but loudly at away games across the country, and protest outside (and inside) Rugby Park. Hopefully the Killie support will become a sea of Blue and Yellow at every game this season.

The other big event coming up on the 7th of September is the Killie Trust Charity Ball to celebrate the first decade of the Killie Trust. We have been working on this event for some time. It was decided many months ago that the profits from this event should be split between the Rett UK and the Ayrshire Hospice. Later in the year we will no doubt hold another of our very successful comedy nights.

A Decade of Trust

The last ten years have been quietly dramatic for the Killie Trust. We started as a way of working with the club to promote the views of supporters. Over the years we developed a number of community based projects to help promote the Club and Trust.  Now the Trust finds itself standing side by side with the other supporters’ organisations working to bring a change to Rugby Park and start the journey into Community ownership. The only constant at any football club are the supporters.

You can donate to the Community Ownership Group here

You can keep up to date with our journey with the Killie Trust on Facebook, Twitter and our Blog site.

Update. Local businessman Billy Bowie joined the board of Kilmarnock football club in August 2013. The details of this investmehttps%3A%2F%2Fs2.wp.com%t.

First publish by Scottish Fans in August 2013.