Proceedings of 2016 HCSS Annual General Meeting

Date: 28 June 2016, Time: 7.30pm
Venue: Spread Eagle, Woodstock Street, London

In attendance: Richard Gardham, Adrian Hoggarth, Clive Bogg, Andy Clark, Chris Cottell, Dan Heap, Sue Brown, Paul Ashbridge, Chris Swales, Iain Armitage

Apologies: Nicholas Cliffe, Harvey Fletcher, Ian Thomson, Peter Helsby, Jon Tennison, Keith Benson, Mike Lawton, Marilyn Campbell, James Lockwood, Lucy Tennison


1. Chairman’s Report (Richard Gardham)

It’s been an unusual season for the HCSS. The lack of the distraction from the name change request made by the Allams, and on-pitch success of Hull City could and should have made it a season in which relations between the owners and fans were mended and we looked forward together towards a brighter future.

Sadly, many of the wounds seem to have been too deep to heal, and the ill-thought-out new membership scheme only serves to demonstrate how far apart a large element of the Hull City fan base and the owners of the club are.

This seems to have spread towards the HCSS. Attendances at televised games are down, ticket orders seem less numerous than they have been in previous years, and overall there seems to be a strained enthusiasm towards the club in its current guise from a lot of hardcore members. With this in mind, it would seem best for all sides that the club is sold for this summer and a fresh start is made.

I think it’s fair to say that our relationship at the HCSS with the club has been strained but not entirely poor. No one at the club has responded to any of my emails for a good 18 months now, though our relations on the ticketing side of things remain good. How that relationship survives in the face of the changes brought about by the new membership scheme remains to be seen. We’ll continue to do our best by the members on that score, but obviously much of it is out of our hands. Should the club be taken over, I’ll contact the new regime at an early stage to establish what will hopefully be good relations.

Obviously we’ve not had a meet-the-club night for a couple of season now. As I can’t get any response from the club, we’re very much handicapped on that score. Again, this is something we’ll try to resurrect should there be new owners. In the mean time, as I’m writing a book about the club I have access to many former players, managers and owners. If anyone has a wish list of a meet-the-AN Other night, I’ll see what I can do.

Elsewhere in the HCSS, as always it has been a pleasure to run the group. The newsletter seems to work well, though I’m always open to suggestions on how it could be improved. I know we could do better with regards to marketing and perhaps social media, but that is very much reliant on us having the people to put the effort in. But all in all, I remain happy that we offer very good value for £6 annual membership. Thank you as always to those who put in so much hard work to make it all work as well as it does.

I’ll be happy to stand as chairman for another season if members feel it is appropriate.

Richard Gardham

(Richard returned as Chairman)

2. Membership Secretary’s Report (James Lockwood)

For the 2015/16 season, we’ve had 245 registered members. This comprises of 39 junior members, 203 adult members and 3 senior members. This is a reduction of 50 members from the 2014/15 season, but an increase from the 201 members we had the last time Hull City were in the second tier of English football.

There have been no significant membership issues to report this season, so I would like to thank all members for their patience at times.

Unfortunately I don’t feel I’ve personally been able to offer the role of HCSS membership my best attention over the past season, so like much of the current Shadow Cabinet, I feel it would be in the best interests of the group if I step back from my membership commitments for the next year

(James to be replaced by Mike Scott)

3. Treasurer’s Report (James Lockwood)

Attached are the clubs accounts. We currently have £1837.10 in the bank account, and increase of £105.13 from the previous season. So we’d taken £1149.21 in subs, with the biggest expenses being food we’d put on both for televised games and also at games with a high attendance (Milton Keynes) plus the taxi for Rotherham.

I would suggest this has worked well for this season.

We’ve already agreed the membership fee for the new season is to remain at £6 for adults and free for children, but that would need to be voted on during the AGM.

The Sky/BT Sports deals with BT for the next season has seen televised matches split into 7 packages
Package A (Sky) 28 games on Saturday lunchtime
Package B (BT Sport) 28 games on Saturday tea time
Package C (Sky) 28 games Sunday lunchtime
Package D (Sky) 28 games Sunday afternoon
Package E (Sky) 18 games Monday evening, 10 games Friday evening
Package F (BT Sport) 14 games mid-week and some Saturday games
Package G (Sky) 14 games on Bank Holidays and some Sunday matches

As a result, the chances are that we’ll be on TV a hell of a lot more, and the timings of our games will be messed about with a hell of a lot more. So 1 question for the AGM, are members happy to still use the Eagle to watch games in a group. And especially with the evening matches, are they happy for us to keep providing food as long as we can afford it? On that point it may be helpful if we could gain some level of interest from members, so we can try and order in sufficient food accordingly

I’m happy to retain my role as group Treasurer should the AGM wish to vote me back into the role

(James returned as Treasurer)

4. Ticket Organiser’s Report (Martin Batchelor/Mike Scott)

From Mike Scott:
•We sold just over £30,000 of tickets in the season, another massive result with over 900 tickets ordered
•A surplus of just under £5 earned over the season
•A one-off surplus of £528 provided by Martin from earlier seasons, was used to fund £572 for the travel guide and the website. These expenses will need to be covered from subs this year

I’m happy to keep up my ticketing role next season.

(Martin and Mike returned as Ticket Organisers).

5. Events/APFSCIL Secretary (Paul Ashbridge)

It was decided to continue to use the Spread Eagle as our main venue for televised games. We’ll also advertise when we’re providing food.

With APFSCIL we’re going to keep a watching brief on wherther or not we actually need to retain our membership of the organization. The football team don’t seem to need it – though there was some discussion on that point – and attending meetings is something of a chore. Paul will attend the first meeting of the season and leave it at that for this year. We’ll reassess for next year.

(Paul returned as the Events/APFSCIL secretary)

6. Travel Organiser’s Report (Dan Heap)

Dan said it was getting harder to sort out travel deals with TV schedules messing around with the fixtures at a late stage. However, he’ll keep on trying on this score. We also looked at the possibility of organising taxis for the further afield pubs. Dan also agreed to help out should be provide pre-match food in pubs.

7. Marketing Report (Richard Gardham)

I’ve done very little on this score. Sorry! I’m happy to relinquish this role but also happy to continue going. Short of advertising a bit more on Not606 it seems hard to know what we could do on this score. Any ideas would be welcomed.

It was decided to merge the Marketing and Social Media roles. Who fulfils that role is yet to be decided.

8. Tigers Eye Editor’s Report (Andy Clark)

All good here. Everyone very happy with recent edition.

(Andy returned as Tigers Eye Editor)

9. Football Team Manager’s Report (Iain Armitage)

Despite being promoted it’s been a tough season for the football team and ahead of the AGM of the team next month it’s uncertain that they’ll ever have a team for next season. The team as it stands has a disappointingly low number of HCSS members/Hull lads. Iain requested that through membership we alert him/someone from the team to any male under the age of 40 who joins up and can be asked if they fancy playing. This is something we’ll look into. Also, we could be more proactive on social media with player recruitment. The club is also experiencing some financial worries.

Iain is going to start a 7-aside team in London for HCSS members.

Should the team continue, Iain will continue to run it alongside Rob Russell-Pavier.

10. Travel Guide Report (Ian Thomson)

Good progress is being made with the editorial side of the new season’s Travel Guide. Also, I’m hoping to have selected a printer by the end of the week.

(Ian has taken over the role from Mike Scott and will do it from here on in)

11. Social Media Secretary (Adrian Hoggarth)

As the role no longer exists Adrian has stepped down.

12. Committee posts for 2016/17 season

  • Chairman – Richard Gardham
  • Membership Secretary – Mike Scott
  • Treasurer – James Lockwood
  • Ticket Organisers – Martin Batchelor/Mike Scott
  • Events/APFSCIL Secretary – Paul Ashbridge
  • Travel Organiser – Dan Heap
  • Marketing and Social Media Secretary – TBA
  • Tigers Eye Editor – Andy Clark
  • Football Team Manager – Iain Armitage
  • Travel Guide Editor – Ian Thomson
  • General Counsel – Ian Thomson

13. Any Other Business

There was some interest in a meet the legends night, which Rich Gardham is in a decent position to oragnise given his contacts for writing his book. Brian Horton was a popular choice among those assembled.

As to whether we should protest more as a group was also discussed. The feeling was that it should only be in extreme circumstances and/or something that directly affects HCSS fans (such as the Huddersfield bubble). It was pointed out that there are plenty of outlets for Hull City fans to protest against the club’s running should they so desire.

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