Sadly, we are back to approaching a weekend without our football fix, but we must get our priorities right and hopefully get through this next month of lockdown with it having the positive effect it is planned to do. I circulated some midweek notes this week as the official lockdown started because I wanted to alleviate any fears about the future of the club in these troubled times and so many reports of clubs in danger. I also took the opportunity to share some of the numbers involved in running the club, as I think it is important that we all have an understanding of what goes on and learn to appreciate the valuable contributions every one of us can make. It is not always about who has the deepest pockets, all contributions have an impact and it is those reliable volunteers, taking away one more thing from the Board to worry about, that are so vital to the club.
As an example, the selling of programmes is something that we do at every home game, thankfully it is not something that any of the Board need to concern ourselves with each week as for more years than any of us can remember we have been fortunate to have the ever reliable Stuart McGowan at the turnstiles providing the service. As many of you will know, Stuart and his family have been involved in the club ever since Stuart was in short trousers, playing a vital part in making us the club we are. A big thank you to Stuart, and all our volunteers that do their bit.
The coming weeks are going to be strange with no football, no training and not even the opportunity to pop to the clubhouse for a pint, but rather than hibernate for the month of November I am determined that we take this opportunity to focus on getting more supporters involved with the club and increasing engagement with the community at large. As always, we are on the lookout for more volunteers to make things happen and lift the burden from those that are already doing so much. Do not ever think “I can’t offer much”, how do you know until we have spoken? It takes just one email.
We have recently been involved in helping to provide free school lunches to children during the half-term period, this is a cause that we would like to continue to support and we are also desperately keen to start fundraising for our new charity partners, Bucks Mind. The plan is to organise a virtual sponsored walk where participants walk a set distance each day during a period in November to cover the equivalent of walking from The Meadow to Beaconsfield Town FC.
We will have the players and management involved in what should be a bit of fun, a chance to virtually stay in touch with each other, and raise some funds for a good cause. I am hoping that this becomes a Supporters’ Trust organised event so that they can reach out to as many fans as possible to get involved.
We will also imminently be launching a competition to design our kit for the 2021/22 season – Yes, a chance to get your colouring crayons out and share with us the shirt you would like to see us playing in each week. The competition will be open to everyone of all ages and you don’t need to be a top designer to take part – We are not looking for the best artist, we are looking for the best ideas. We are planning to offer different incentives and prizes for different age groups – watch this space, also we need a club tie, again a prize for this! Anyone want to design that in a competition, or if you would like to get involved in the organising and promoting of this competition please contact me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org. Later this month we will also be carrying out a survey to gauge supporters’ opinions on a range of topics related to the club, keep any eye out on social media and the website for details as to how you can participate in this.
Finally, you will no doubt have seen earlier this week that we launched a new website directly with our kit manufacturers which enables you to order replica shirts, t-shirts, hoodies, polo shirts and loads more including baby grows and bibs at cheshamunited.co.uk/shop. We also have a stall in the virtual marketplace being run by the Chesham Life Facebook page.
This online shop is available to you in addition to the Supporters’ Trust run club shop that is open on matchdays, selling a wide range of goods including mugs, programmes, hats and scarves. More information is available on availability by emailing email@example.com. Between us all there is loads of opportunities to proudly display our colours around the town, our homes and workplaces, including having plenty to choose from when it comes to starting your Christmas shopping.
Plenty more to come over the coming weeks, stay safe, stay strong and together we will see this through.
Peter Brown, Chairman
Chesham United Football Club