Working With The Young Pirates
February 20, 2006
Supporters Club Executive Committee members John Malyckyj, Kim Stuckey and Robin Schols met last Tuesday with Pete Bromage, Julie Whalley and Alan Egelton from the Young Pirates Committee met for the second time in less than a week to explore ways in which the two organisations can work together for the common good of the Football Club.
The Young Pirates have been badly hit by a move from the main car park to a site in the corner of the car park, which is on the western side of the ground by the Memorial Gates.
Julie, Pete and Alan outlined the significant problems they have experienced in trying to maintain the profile of the Young Pirates in a place that lacks visibility.
“We understand why we had to move, but its been really difficult for us to recruit new members because we just don’t get the passing trade like we used to when we were in the main car-park.” explained Chairman Pete Bromage, “we have tried everything but in the end we need to be in a place where we can be seen.”
Unfortunately the Young Pirates have experienced a drop in membership numbers and the meeting explored several ways in which the Supporters Club could help in retrieving the situation. As Julie Whalley pointed out “The Young Pirates of today are the Supporters Club members of tomorrow and if we can hook them early on they will stay with Bristol Rovers for life, the children appreciate what we do but we have to get them in.”
Director Kim Stuckey had raised the issue at last week’s board meeting and was able to say that he had secured an agreement in principle that the Young Pirates should return to the main car park, however it will be necessary to secure a new portacabin., which will involve some expenditure.
Communications Chairman Robin Schols has created space on the Supporters Club website (www.bristolroverssc.co.uk) for the use of the Young Pirates and he has already been featuring the match day mascot on a regular basis on the news
Pages. There are also plans to allocate a page to the Young Pirates in the Supporters Club newsletter, which will be circulated amongst members of both organisations.
It was also realised that there is no formal link between the two organisations when a Young Pirate reaches the age of 16, so it is hoped to develop a system whereby the Supporters Club can contact these people as close to their birthday as possible.
“We’ve had two really useful meetings and I’ve learned a lot about the problems that Young Pirates have been experiencing, if we can help them in any way then that has to be for the good of the football club in the end.” Said John Malyckyj. “We went away with several action points and we’ll meet again in a month or so to see how things develop.”