From The Archives: To Somerset…..on foot

On 24th of July 2004 an intrepid band of Trust members set off from Rugby Park and walked the 16miles to a football ground south of Symington which in some circles is also known as Somerset Park, Ayr.

They weren’t doing this for no reason however, for one they were heading down to see the Westsound Trophy match between Killie and Ayr but also they were being sponsored to do so to help raise funds to sponsor Kilmarnock’s under 17 squad and also to aid local schools by helping purchase sports equipment.

They faced some fairly inclement weather with some early damping down giving way to a stiff breeze to dry them out on the approach to KA8.  Unfortunately, this was followed by a drenching towards the end of the journey, indeed a bit like the pattern of the game itself. Here they are before they set off however.

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Fog Lifts to Reveal £1500 Barrier Broken

wpid-img_20140521_224439.jpgYou may remember our article a few years back about Killie fan and big Trust supporter Stevie Miller (aka Fog) when he bannered up his hot snack emporium with our logos and Twitter handle. Since then he has moved pitch from his long term home out the Queens Drive in Kilmarnock to Annandale Industrial Estate (between Crosshouse Hospital and the Cotton Mill/Premier Inn) but the change of environment hasn’t halted the donations to the Trust rolling in from his trusty Trust tin!

A ring of THAT bell means that one of his loyal customers has dug deep in their pockets and popped their change or more into his collection tin in aid of our community ownership drive for Kilmarnock FC.

The bell has been rung out plenty just recently as Fog has cemented his place at the top of the “leader board” with a whopping £1500 raised in total over the years. With no sign of stopping we should add.

Money raised is to help with the long term goal to make the club 50% + 1 owned by the supporters. Some of the money raised is utilised too for various community schemes which we the Trust initiate.

wpid-img_20140518_123405.jpgChairman, Barry Richmond stated “Stevie has been a long term supporter of our aims and is a Killie fan through and through. I would like to take this opportunity to thank not only him, but all the other local businesses that have our collection tins in their premises and to their many, many customers who donate willingly.”

Collection tins can be found in the following locations….Rainbow Ink, Grange Filling Station, Varani’s Forum Cafè, McLelland Stores, Portmann Hotel, Ralph’s Newsagents, The Chip Bank, Howard Arms, Burns Inn, Kay Park Tavern, Brass and Granite, Bakery Bites, Yum Yums, The Garage, Shah’s Curry House and Fauld’s the Butchers.

If any other business would like to contribute to allow collection tins on their premises please contact the Trust by email on community@killietrust.org or via mobile on 07748252455.

Response to Michael Johnston’s Recent Statement

In response to comments made by KFC Chairman Michael Johnston in todays Daily Record Gary Torbett had this to say on behalf of The Killie (Community) Working Party:

“Further to the announcement by The Killie (Community) Working Party [on the 11th of February 2014] of its intention to offer to purchase the shareholding of Michael Johnston, Chairman of Kilmarnock Football Club, in the event that the club were to become debt free, we are extremely disappointed that Mr Johnston has so swiftly and publicly dismissed our intentions.

“It is disappointing that this proposal has been dismissed so early into the process without any constructive dialogue with Mr Johnston. Mr Johnston has offered our group the opportunity to buy a seat on the board should it purchase circa 10% of the unallocated shares in the football club. It would not be appropriate for this particular group to purchase a tranche of shares at this time to obtain a seat on the board of Kilmarnock FC, given our stated purpose.

“The group would welcome, indeed we would urge for, the opportunity to meet with the football club to establish a mutually agreeable route to genuine community ownership, which has the club’s long term future in mind.

“Our doors remain firmly open to Mr Johnston.”

Supporters Direct Scotland has also reiterated its willingness to work with both parties.

COG Working Party Press Release – 11th February 2014

KILMARNOCK FC SUPPORTERS GROUP MAKE OFFER TO PURCHASE THEIR CLUB

The Killie (Community) Working Party, established with support from  Supporters Direct Scotland, has announced its intention to make an offer  to purchase Kilmarnock FC’s Chairman’s entire shareholding.

garybioGary  Torbett, on behalf of The Killie (Community) Working Party, said: “We  would like to acknowledge the work being undertaken by the Chairman of  Kilmarnock Football Club to make the club debt free and would positively  encourage him to make every effort to come to an agreement with the  club bankers and other significant lenders to reduce the debt to zero.   The Killie (Community) Working Party would like to make an offer to  purchase the Chairman’s entire shareholding if this can be achieved.”

“This  offer would be contingent on a fair valuation of the company and the  completion of a satisfactory due diligence process.  This purchase would  be undertaken by a new Community Interest Company (CIC) with a  democratically elected board.”

Scottish-FansPaul Goodwin, Head of Supporters  Direct Scotland said, “I met with Michael Johnston, on behalf of The  Killie (Community) Working Party, on Friday [7th February] and conveyed  the outline of the supporters’ offer.  I reiterated SDS’ willingness to  assist in progressing this offer to a satisfactory conclusion for both  parties.”

Gary Torbett added: “We see this move as a genuine step forward as we prepare to get our club back.

Unfortunately  there remains concern amongst supporters with the long term position of  the club and we firmly believe that fan and community ownership is  where that lies rather than relying on a single majority shareholder who  won’t be around for ever.  The only constants at any club are the fans  and the community it is based in.”

“We will shortly launch our formal efforts to raise the money to take  the club into community ownership and we hope that the business  community – both private and public – as well as community groups and  supporters will get behind us.”

Kilmarnock fans have a history of successful fundraising and  community involvement. Over £100,000 has been directly raised for the  Club’s youth development programme and a number of initiatives driven by  The Killie Trust have seen financial awards to a many community based  projects in recent years.

The Killie (Community) Working Party is made up, in no particular order, of:

  • The Killie Trust
  • The Kilmarnock FC Supporters Association
  • Minority shareholders in Kilmarnock FC
  • The Business Club
  • Young Kilmarnock

Issued on behalf of The Killie (Community) Working Party by Supporters Direct Scotland.

For further information please contact Paul Goodwin on 07702 252519 or Gary Torbett  on 07905 478179

Charity Ball Latest: Special Guests Attending

ballWe are delighted to announce that birthday boy and local legend Garry Hay will be our guest of honour at the upcoming Charity Ball. At the end of the last season Garry was released by the club after many years sterling service, but still voluntarily coaches some of our youth players. We have asked him to come along in appreciation of his dedication to Killie and everything he has done off the park for the fans down the years. Garry will be joining former Killie Scottish Cup winning legends, the 97 club if you will, hookyMark Reilly, Kevin McGowne, Jim McIntyre and Gerry McCabe (more still to confirm) at the Rhett Syndrome Research table which is one of the charities who will be benefiting from the night. Tickets are still available, see details here, this is one not to miss!

The Wisdom of Crowds Part Two

DSC_0195Supporters Direct Scotland (SDS) held a one day summit for Scottish Trusts on fan ownership on the 29th of July 2013 at Stirling Albion football stadium.

This event was attended by Elaine Millar, Barry Richmond and Andy Millar from the Killie Trust board. This was an opportunity for supporters to discuss common issues and to share experiences on a number of subjects.

The Stirling Albion story

First we had a presentation on Stirling Albion’s move into community ownership. This change of ownership took place in order to prevent the heavily in debt club going into administration. The debt stood at £1.3 million with no real plan to reduce this figure.  A situation very similar to the one at Killie but on a slightly smaller scale. The long term strategy for Stirling Albion was to deal with the debt and have a sustainable football club.

The Dundee story

The story of Dundee’s various administration events and dubious owners is well documented. The crucial part of the story is how much more difficult the purchase of the club was while in administration. The time scales for taking action can be very short indeed.

The Clyde story

Finally we told about the day to day operations of Clyde FC which is a Community Interest Company (CIC). This included the work and democratic process that has been undertaken around the proposed move to East Kilbride. Clyde have been working with in a sustainable budget since they became a CIC as the rules that cover CICs do allow them to work any other way.

DSC_0192We then took part in workshops about two different subject themes.

  • In which areas could community clubs work together to reduce overheads and increase income.
  • What governmental and governing bodies legislative changes could be made to benefit clubs moving toward or in community ownership.

Finally we had an opportunity to update the other attendees about what was happening at our respective clubs and trusts.

It was very interesting to hear what has been happening at other Trusts in Scotland, and in particular to hear from Clubs that are now in community ownership.

We came away with a lot of very good ideas that we will be adapting for our use and a lot of good contacts. There is no reason that football clubs cannot help and support each other off the pitch and still compete on it. If all scottish football fans work together we can start to improve that situation our game is in for everyone and community owned clubs are leading the way.

For more details visit the Scottish fans page about the summit.

Trust Ball Kilt Deal at Ayrshire Kilt Shop

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Have you got your tickets yet for The Killie Trust Charity Ball in September? If so and you are about to start looking for what you are going to wear on the big night why not have a look in The Ayrshire Kilt Shop who have got in contact with the Trust and offered 10% off the hire of a full kilt outfit for the Trust Ball!
 
pascaTheir shop is situated out at the Moorfield Estate in their McCallum Bagpipes premise and they have a great range of tartans and highlandwear.
 
They do the official Killie tartan and normal price is £100 so anyone hiring would save £10.
 
McCallum Bagpipes can be found on facebook and twitter also at @mccallumbagpipe 

Statement on Behalf of Ayrshire Businesses

Statement from John Gall (MD of Brownings the Bakers), on behalf of Ayrshire businesses regarding KFC:-

BrowningsLogo2TRANSTonight a group of like-minded business people from Kilmarnock met to discuss their concerns about the current state of affairs at Kilmarnock Football Club.

The local businesses represented were Braehead Foods, Brownings the Bakers, The Coffee Press, Costley & Costley Hoteliers, Fortress Security & Alarms, Hamilton Tarmac, The Klin Group, Microtech Support, Modway and the QTS Group.

The group has unanimously agreed that the only way they can continue to fully support the Club is if there is a change in regime.

A spokesperson has been appointed to request a meeting with Michael Johnston to clarify his position and discuss the way forward in the best interest of Kilmarnock Football Club.

John Gall
Managing Director
Browning’s the Bakers
Block 1
Bonnyton Ind Estate
Kilmarnock
Ayrshire
KA1 2NP

Jude Scoops Graeme Howie Memorial Award

We are delighted to announce that this year’s winner of the Graeme Howie Memorial Award for Community Involvement is none other than hot prospect Jude Winchester.

The staff at the club choose the winner each year and so far Garry Hay has been honoured twice, but young Jude has been out and about doing club business more than anyone this season it seems and it is his name that will get engraved on the shield that Graeme’s dad will present this afternoonjude at the match.

We would like to thank the club for allowing us to present the award and our sincerest gratitude also goes to Davie, wife Maureen and their daughter Caroline for the outstanding contribution they make to our Trust in an ongoing basis.

Killie fans have witnessed some really sad times in the past few years and although we push ahead and get on with things, we are the Killie family, we will never forget our own.

Killie Trust Board Statement on Kilmarnock Redevelopment

Trust10aThe Killie Trust would like to congratulate Diageo PLC and the Klin Group on their announcement of the proposed development of an indoor arena and associated facilities in Kilmarnock. The Killie Trust has long been involved in attempting to bring community-based multi-sports facilities to Kilmarnock. This fantastic and unique community-based venture would bring much-needed jobs and attract visitors back to the town, as well as providing the local population, organisations and businesses with top quality facilities. The Killie Trust looks forward to working closely with Klin Group in the consultation process to begin shortly.

Barry Richmond, Chairman of the Killie Trust stated: “From a community perspective we as a Trust are excited by what the future holds and that is not something that we have been able to say for a long time. I sincerely hope that other community groups will recognise the significance of these proposals and that we as a collective, in partnership with the Klin Group and the legacy of Diageo, can help put Kilmarnock back on the map as Scotland’s top provincial town with a heritage to be proud of and a future that is bright.”

Nigel Fitzsimmons, Secretary of the Killie Trust stated: “The Macklin family are strong advocates for the regeneration of Kilmarnock and the revitalisationof this community. Their vision and commitment are in harmony with the community targeted objectives of the Killie Trust and we are delighted to be involved in this exciting development”

Trust board member and Vice President of Kilmarnock & District History Group Gary Torbett said: ‘Kilmarnock has a long history of innovation, promotion and excellence in sport. The proposed development ensures this would continue for generations to come and truly gives the area a sporting and socialhub to be proud of. The rewards of having such a magnificent facility at the heart of the community would be significant and give us all a future to be proud of. Well done to Diageo and Klin group for their positive vision.”