5th March 2011 Dagenham & Redbridge
January 1, 2000
BRSC programme notes compiled by Dennis Payter
Welcome to Daggers fans who may be visiting Bristol Rovers for the very first time, enjoy your football with us and a safe journey back along the M4/M25 and other parts after the game.
The support at the Oldham game was superb as it was at Brentford last Saturday. There is no doubt about the part we can play as we work hard to maintain League One football in BS7 and then to push on. Together we can, divided makes it more difficult. We pay out good money to support our club and we are all entitled to a constructive point of view. It is good to share opinions around the branches, on the air, in the pubs and around the stadium bars on matchdays, but we are a Blue and White Army and proud of it. The quarters are special, blue and white quarters are special and so are we.
In a more academic vein, football is a force for good. Football brings people together in friendship like no other. The game is truly universal and loved by peoples and communities the world over. Football continues to grow and to reach out. Football is a vehicle for unity, communication, respect, good citizenship and learning. Football is means to charity, good causes and meaningful foundations. Football is about kindred spirit. The opportunities provided by Football makes it a totaffy unique sport, indeed an institution.
Please read my ‘Webwatch‘ column. Many of you will already know about my planned walk later this month and into the first week of April. The support that I have received from supporters of Bristol Rovers, Yeovil Town and Exeter City supporters has been excellent so far and widespread. I have very good reasons to undertake this challenge as you will read in my column. Please support the Adam Stansfield Foundation by supporting me to walk 180 miles in 10 days.
Weston super Mare branch will be organising a fund raising evening at the Windsor Castle on the Friday as I embark, hopefully, on my final push back to Bristol on April 8th. Members of the branch have offered accommodation and have promised to join me part of the way between Exeter and Bristol. Andy Greenslade is the Sales and Marketing Manager for Roganstown Hotel and Country Club in Swords, County Dublin and a big Rovers Fan, so much so that he flew back from Dublin to support the team at Brentford. Andy is putting up a prize draw for a weekend stay in the Emerald Isle.
Don’t get me wrong. The game is also about winning football matches to and to take joy and pleasure from that. It is also about taking defeat on the chin, learning form defeat and emerging stronger and better prepared for the next time. I believe that is what we are trying to do in these testing times. Many of the players representing the club today are new to us.They deserve and expect the togetherness that we can bring as they battle to lift us out of trouble.
Some other branch news for your diaries; Gloster Gas will be meeting at the Double Glouceser in Longlevens on Thursday March 10th. The highly successful Severn Vale Gas will be celebrating their first anniversary as a group during the last week of the month at the Railway Tavern in Charfield. Please watch this space for further details and go along to enjoy the company at your local branch.
Back to this afternoon; together we can. The past, present and future is Blue and White.
Let’s do this, and do it together.
Ken Masters BRSC Director
HAVE YOU WON?
At the time of writing the winner of the 50/50 draw at the Oldham Athletic game has not claimed the prize money of £774.
The winning ticket 69102 was sold by Pete Collins on Filton Avenue. Did you buy it? Any claimant must produce the winning ticket at the BRSC shop, 199, Two Mile Hill Road, Kingswood, Bristol.
Steve Duddridge, who won the 50/50 draw at the Colchester game, collects his £615 winnings from Jim Chappell. Steve won with ticket no. 68611 sold by Leanne in the Guinness Stand.
SHARE SCHEME SIGNED SHIRT DRAW
At the Oidham game David Bunker and his daughter Grace collected the signed shirt which he won in the draw at the MK Dons match.
At today’s game we hope to be presenting one or more of the following with the signed shirt they have won although at the time of writing we have been unable to contact them:-Richard Collins (Walsall), Alan Carter( (Hartlepool), Ian Dennis (Brighton), Simon Hartley (Oldham)
If you are one of the winners, and we have still not managed to contact you, will you please telephone Clare on 0117 9524001 or e mail to clare@bristolrovers. co.uk
ORGANISED JUNIOR MATCHDAY PARTIESAll remaining Saturday games are now booked.
Today we welcome Frome Collegians.
Defeat for either team here this afternoon will be a major blow to League One survival given the position that we are both in.
Whilst, with the greatest respect, ‘Daggers’ fans would not be surprised to be in a relegation ‘dogfight’ it was certainly not something that should have been on Rovers’ agenda. We are assured by the Rovers board that Paul Trollope’s playing budget was about the eighth biggest in the division, certainly enough to keep clear of trouble and designed to improve on last season and make a proper attempt at the play off positions. As it turned out most of Paul’s recent signings, with the notable exception of Will Hoskins and Gary Sawyer, have been no better and in some cases not as good as those players who were released at the end of their contracts last summer.
Lennie Lawrence, our former Director of Football and responsible for signings, came in for a fair amount of criticism from some quarters last year but those yelling for his very experienced head might just reflect on how things have turned out since his departure at the end of last season! The Board have again dug into their pockets this season, bearing in mind just one home game in seven weeks at the end of last year produced insufficient income to pay the wages, and have continued to do so since the appointment of Dave Penney who has now signed no less than eight new players in order to try and plug the holes in Rovers’ badly leaking defence.
Recent performances, if not yet perhaps always the results those performances deserve, have improved dramatically and there is real optimism that we can avoid the drop although time and games are, of course, running out. What I am getting at is that today is not the time for protest as everyone connected with the club should be getting behind an almost completely new set of players who are trying to gel and produce the results we all, (I sincerely hope all), desperately want! The last time we heard such discordant voices was when the club was struggling at the bottom of Division Two and the Supporters Club started the Share Scheme in order to provide funding whilst also giving the fans full representation on the Board.
This has long been achieved but even before that the Board and Football Club management have always made themselves available at our meetings and club fun days etc to answer any queries from supporters and they continue to do so. Frankly a lot of tripe has been written on various forums recently as to the Supporters Club’s relationship with the Board. The relationship is very good I am pleased to say because what else would a true supporter want? Both parties at loggerheads when we are fighting to keep the club up?
The Football Club does not have a mortgage on the our shop in Kingswood which we bought for cash when the club moved to the Cadbury site at Keynsham some 20 years ago. Apparently it was left on Company House listings due to an oversight by the previous administration, an error that has now been put right. We are pleased, and proud, to have two full Directors on the Rovers Board but they, as with any others who might replace them in the future, are bound by confidentiality restraints and cannot reveal all to everyone. I am assured that there is continuing progress on the stadium redevelopment and I trust those in power who are working so hard to bring it about. Getting a near £40m stadium built for you by outside funding is not easy and if you don’t believe that then look to the other side of the river. Both Rovers and City have planning permission for new stadiums – all they have to do is find the money. The problem is the same, whilst the solution may be very different!
Most important is that every supporter gets behind Dave’s boys this afternoon as you did for the Oldham game. The level of noise that day is what just might make the difference come the end of the season. Forget black and gold, blue and white quarters are what Rovers are about and let’s help keep those unique colours up in Division One.
Jim Chappell, BRSC Chairman