Author: Jeff Banks

CFU Directors’ Portfolio Update – Fundraising & Governance


Today, we continue the updates from the Director portfolios, with David Williams providing the Fundraising Update and Mark Jones with the Governance Update.


Firstly, David Williams, Fundraising Portfolio:


Christmas Raffle & Party – Since the Evening with Kevin Ratcliffe in the Summer, the main focus of the Fundraising Working Group has been the Christmas Raffle and Party. We have

  • Sold tickets in pubs
  • Sold tickets at The Forum in the City Centre
  • Sold tickets at MBNA

Furthermore, we would like to thank all the fans who have sold tickets themselves. This is something we need all fans to get involved with as it is one of the income streams that the club relies on.

The draw for which took place last night at the Chester FC Christmas Party at the Upton British Legion. Details of winners will be published in due course.


Seals Lottery – Regular publication of the draw results has seen a gradual increase in sales of Seal Lottery tickets, first prize was an impressive £542 last month. The pay out is linked to the number of entrants and we hope to grow this further in the New Year.


50-50 Draw – In conjunction with the Fan Engagement Working Group, we have offered half-time fan experiences out on the pitch as consolation prizes in the 50-50 draws. All being well, this will increase ticket sales and make the main cash prize even bigger!


eBay – Our eBay auctions have raised circa £1,600 since they begin in February. We wish to thank all who have placed bids – we even had a winner who lives in Shanghai! We hope to offer something relating to the Akwasi Asante debut hat-trick in the near future.



Mark Jones, Governance Update


Health & Safety – The last few months have been very busy on the Health & Safety front with a number of planned regular safety inspections from CWAC, the FA and under the Safety of Sports Ground Act.
Considerable progress has been made on a full review of our health & safety policies, risk assessments and safety certificate renewals.

Safety Certificate – The flooding obviously gave us major headaches with the safety certificate, however we were successful in regaining our safety certificate from CWAC following that difficult period.

Safety Advisory Group – A meeting of the SAG was held on 26th November. One area of discussion was the potential for a separate safety certificate to also enable Chester FC to host events at the stadium not involving football. This could potentially open a number of doors for revenue in the future,

Working Group – The Governance working group has attracted new members and is now meeting on a monthly basis.
Each member of the Governance working group will be working alongside CFU Board members to review and manage risks within their portfolio.



Tomorrow’s update will be provided Jeff Banks, whose portfolio includes Membership & Fan Engagement.

CFU Directors’ Portfolio Update – Commercial

2018 has been a year to both forget and remember for Chester fans and owners.


It started of course, with the crisis meeting in January that saw CFU members and Blues fans alike come together and raise funds to effectively keep the club going in its hour of need.


Changes to the board followed with a desire to put the club back on track, and along with some amazing fundraising efforts we’ve seen the club go from strength to strength especially with the change in management team that saw Bern and Jonno come in after last season finished.


The call has gone out for additional bodies on both the board and working groups, to help continue drive the club forward and as we approach Christmas and the tail end of the year, in the absence of a CFU members meeting in December the board of directors wanted to update you with a taste of what they’ve been working on since the last members’ meeting and what is to come in their portfolios, and today we begin with the Chairman, David Harrington-Wright.


David listed the following as updates in the Commercial portfolio.


Matchday sponsorships – We have almost completely sold out match ball and programme sponsorships which is great news, but there are a few remaining so would encourage anyone wanted to book a matchday package to contact straight away to avoid missing out!


Ground Boards – We have also several new ground boards in place which was always the aim, to bring new companies and sponsors into the club.


Groundsman’s Facilities – We have also contra deals put in place that have brought a top of the range mower for Mike Barrow, which enables vastly improved cutting of the grass and less time required on that side of things.

A contra deal has also been arranged with a company that provide drainage services for the pitch, this being a five year deal saving the club about £3k, but also gives us additional services free of charge too, which naturally is a major positive!


Club Shop – We have a new supplier of additional clothing and promotional items for the club shop and online, the first products were two bespoke jackets for the managers, which they can be seen wearing when not on the touchline.


End of Season Event – We are currently having meetings and discussion around of an end of season party, with details to follow on this very soon. We do of course have to take into consideration available dates with the planning of the event too.


Next Season – Even though we’re still only midway through this season, we are now planning for next season, talking to all existing sponsors, and of course new sponsors expressing interest in supporting the club.


Working group – We are a small working group, so always looking for more people to be part of helping the commercial side, and would encourage anyone interested to contact us via emailing and a member of the Group will respond.


Tomorrow we’ll have an update from the Fundraising portfolio holder, David Williams, and also the Governance portfolio holder, Mark Jones.


Membership Target for 2018 hit!

City Fans United are delighted to announce that the membership target of 2018 members by the end of the year 2018 has been hit and surpassed with 2 weeks to spare!


The Fan Engagement Working Group (FEWG) have confirmed that together with the CFU Junior Blues, we now have over 2018 members!


In celebration of this, one City Fans United member will be drawn at random to win a voucher to the value of £20.18 to spend in the club shop, with the draw taking place later this week.


The FEWG have also announced that 10 life members have been signed up to the new Life Membership package which was announced earlier this season, and we would like to thank each and every one of the new Life Members who have joined up and confirm that membership packs are being sent out this week.


Jeff Banks, director of Fan Engagement was delighted the target number had been hit, “Following the January fans meeting at Chester FC, the FEWG was set up and we set out to achieve a goal of 2018 members by the end of 2018, and that is exactly what has been achieved. Just under 12 months ago we had barely 1000 members so to double that number is brilliant. Naturally we want to increase that number further and would encourage anyone who hasn’t joined yet to do so. We’ll shortly be looking to make being a CFU member even more attractive and are working together with local businesses to provide our members with discounts.”


Banks also confirmed that the FEWG were working on a number of themed match days for the New Year following on from the Remembrance and Retro Day themes that took place in November and December respectively, “Our aim is to improve the matchday experience for supporters and we have a Christmas theme for this coming Saturday and have already got a number of planned themes for 2019 that we are also working together with the Community Trust on too, and we hope everyone will take part and enjoy those theme days.”


CFU Meeting – Thursday 15 November

The next City Fans United meeting will take place in the Blues Bar, at the Swansway Chester Stadium, on Thursday 15th November.


The meeting that will get underway at 7.30pm, is an informal meeting and so is open to non-members as well as current members.


It’s an ideal opportunity to come and hear from the CFU board on latest developments, as well as hopefully hearing from joint managers Bern & Jonno.


You can also sign up to CFU membership on the night too, with the membership package an unbeatable £12 per year at present.


The intention is also to stream the meeting on our CFU You Tube channel, on the evening itself.


CFU Life Membership – Payments Instalments News

CFU Life Membership form


The CFU Fan Engagement Working Group (FEWG) can confirm that following feedback from the members, that an additional instalment plan has been put into place for those members wishing to take up Life Membership of CFU.


During the last couple of weeks, members were advised of the new package that enables Life Membership to be secured by way of either a one off £1000 payment, or by a maximum of 4 payments of £250.


The FEWG are now delighted to announce that members can now spread their Life Membership payments over a 10 month period, with a contribution via Direct Debit of £100 per month.


We hope this enables more members to take up the Life Membership option – all those wishing to take advantage of this extra option are invited to email and we will then send details of how to activate a Direct Debit.


Please note, the benefits of Life membership (with the exception of the new pin badge) will be applicable to new members once at least a 50% contribution has been made. Life membership will be revoked if the full £1000 is not received within the 10 month period.


Of course, the other options for securing Life Membership remain – so if you would like to make a one off payment or pay via the 4 x £250 payments then please either email or contact Chester FC on 01244 371376 during normal office hours.


The FEWG will shortly be sending Life membership packs out to those who have purchased the new Life Membership package – and we thank them for doing so.

CFU AGM Review

The City Fans United Annual General Meeting took place last Thursday at the Swansway Chester Stadium, inside a packed Blues Bar.


On the night, Calvin Hughes and Jeff Banks, both of whom stood for election to the board saw their applications ratified by the members who had voted either by proxy or on the night itself. Both will now commence a minimum three year term on the board of directors of CFU.


Laurence Kirby, who stood down as a director of the board on the night, presented his financial report to the audience both in the room and watching online.


Laurence confirmed that CFU had made a £45k loss in the financial year June 2017-May 2018 but that prospects of a brighter future were indeed in place following some fantastic fundraising by volunteers since January 2018. Laurence also indicated that he would be prepared to maintain his financial reporting to the board in the interim whilst a permanent replacement is sought in due course, which the board have wholeheartedly thanked Laurence for.


The Chair of CFU, David Harrington-Wright, also gave a detailed report on the year itself too, and fielded questions from the audience relating to the club’s current financial position, and also with regards to the water damage to the Stadium too, even though this was experienced after the previous financial year had ended.


Minutes of the meeting will be published shortly on the CFU website.


Thanks to everyone that attended on the night, and we look forward to keeping the membership updated with the progress made as we go through the next financial period, June 2018-May 2019.


CFU launch new Life Membership package!

CFU Life Membership form

City Fans United are delighted to announce the official launch of a new Life Membership package available to new and existing members of City Fans United.


Members were asked in the Big City Census earlier this year on their thoughts on the life membership and the fee to join, and following feedback we are now in a position to release full details of the scheme which will allow you to be an owner of Chester FC for the rest of your life.


Life membership will carry a number of benefits (with some more still to be added as we progress through the season) including a Legends Lounge Experience for two people, a first team squad training session exclusively opened up to Life Membership holders with a chance to meet the managers, staff and players of Chester FC, a special open evening with a discount on items in the Club Shop available to members. A new pin badge has also been commissioned for Life Membership.


The fee for Life membership will be £1000, which will help the club build for the future, is payable by debit/credit card, cash, cheque, or by a maximum of four instalments on Direct Debit.


We would therefore like to invite those interested in taking up the Life membership to email with their full contact details in order for us to contact you regarding signing up. You can also print off the Life Membership form, complete, and return it to Chester FC’s Swansway Chester Stadium together with payment.


Existing Life Members from the original Chester City Supporters Trust & Chester City ISA will continue as Life members of City Fans United, and can access the benefits of the new Life Membership package by upgrading from their current status, and are invited to sign up to the new CFU Life Membership package should they wish to do so.


We would like to thank those who have already registered an interest in becoming life members and naturally encourage more to join this new scheme.

AGM Packs sent out

The City Fans United AGM is fast approaching, and the AGM packs have been sent out via email to those who have email addresses listed on their membership profiles.


Those members that don’t have valid email addresses listed on their profile, will have been sent these via post today.


Any members who haven’t received their packs by early next week should contact CFU secretary Marion Needham via the email address


Due to the damage sustained at the Swansway Chester Stadium, the previously planned formal meeting will now not take place, and as such the next meeting will be the AGM and will take place in the Blues Bar on Thursday 27th September, commencing at 7.30pm.


CFU Meeting Postponed

Please note that owing to the water damage incurred at the Swansway Chester Stadium on Sunday, a decision has been made to postpone Thursday’s night’s City Fans United members meeting.


Safety is of course paramount in this situation, and at present several areas of the ground are deemed as ‘Out of Bounds’ due to the water ingress and the board are currently in the process of trying to resolve the issues currently being faced and ensuring there is no risk to anyone’s safety within the ground.


We will announce a revised date once we are in a position to do so, but we’d also like to remind those interested in standing for election that they will need to submit their application by Friday 17th August. Please refer to our recent mailing for further details on this. or by reading our previous announcement regarding the upcoming AGM.


Cameron Rowley

The board of City Fans United would on behalf of everyone connected with Chester FC like to express it’s sincere condolences and offer its support to the family of young Blues fan Cameron Rowley, who sadly passed away yesterday aged just 11 years old.


Cameron endeared himself to everyone he came to meet at the club, and will be greatly missed. He also made a great number of friends amongst the playing squad and management team over the last few years in addition to many Chester fans too. The determination and spirit that Cameron displayed whilst dealing with his illness was second to none, and that spirit has been and will continue to be an inspiration to everyone who knew him.


We’re sure the Chester FC family will join us with sending all of our thoughts and prayers to Cameron’s family and friends at this time, and the club will certainly be paying tribute in the very near future once we have spoken with Cameron’s family, at an appropriate time.


Rest in Peace, Cameron.