News from the SC
August 19, 2009
Bristol Rovers Supporters Club Notes compiled by Dennis Payter
From the chair
A warm welcome back to another season at the Memorial Stadium for all supporters of Bristol’s senior football club! And a welcome to our opening day visitors from East London too for what promises to be an intriguing first game of the new campaign with both clubs looking to improve on last season’s mid-table finish.
We have said ‘goodbye’ to a quintet of very popular players over the summer months, most of whom played a major part in that fantastic run to promotion which climaxed at the then new Wembley Stadium just over two years ago. The two-goal hero that glorious afternoon has been out on loan at the club we defeated on the day, Shrewsbury Town, but Richard Walker is now restarting his career at the League’s newest club, Burton Albion. ‘Walks’ deserved his “Gas Hero” status for that one performance alone, leaving aside the many other goals he netted for Rovers. The two ‘Craigs’, Hinton and Disley were equally popular as were Ryan Green and Joe Jacobson and, on behalf of the Supporters Club I wish all five every happiness and success in their future careers. Thanks for the memories lads – we had some great times with you here! Whilst it is sad to see so many ‘favourites’ disappear virtually overnight it is a stark indication that nothing ever stays the same in what can be a ruthless sport. It also indicates that our management team is not afraid to make the changes they feel necessary in order to improve the squad and with it Rovers’ prospects for a much brighter future. As a consequence we can warmly welcome our first two replacement signings in Carl Regan and Dominic Blizzard in the hope that they will become as popular as the men they have replaced here. If you have not seen any of the club’s pre-season friendly matches I can assure you that they both ‘look the part’ and hopefully will help to take us up to the next level in due course!
who buy the tickets. Please keep buying them as there is much more still to do!
Enjoy the game today and let’s hope for a really great season in prospect!
We buy £28,000 coach
The work of the Supporters Club never stops, even in the close season, and this summer we completed a major ‘signing’ of our own with the purchase of a luxury mini-coach for the use of the Rovers’ revamped Youth Department, now separated completely from Filton College and run entirely by the club. The Youth Department is headed by former Oxford United Manager Darren Patterson who we also extend a warm welcome to – we know already that he much enjoys driving the coach and let’s hope he does so for many years to come!
The coach itself cost £28,000 which was funded by our highly successful 50/50 matchday draw. Chairman Jim Chappell said: “Hopefully most of you were able to see the vehicle on display when we handed the keys over to Darren and Paul Trollope at the annual Fun Day held last month here at the stadium. If you did I’m sure you will all agree that the coach is a first class investment that will greatly raise the Rovers’ profile when conveying the club’s young players around the local area. My sincere thanks go to all our helpers and sellers who work so hard on match days in all winds and weathers to raise the money and, of course, to all you ‘Gasheads’.”
Good afternoon and a very warm welcome to all at the home of Bristol Rovers to see in the dawn of a brand new Football League season.
For a number of seasons in the past we have found ourselves on our travels for the first game. It is good to be at home again on the opening day. We cordially invite all supporters of Leyton Orient to share the excitement that comes with a new campaign. Welcome, thank you for travelling to be with us today and a very safe return journey after the game.
We extend a special welcome to Geraint Williams. Having done so well at Colchester, our former mid fielder is now at the helm of our visitors today. Having played 138 games for the Rovers scoring 8 goals between 1980 and 1985, Georgie went on to play to play at the highest level with Derby County and Ipswich Town. He deserves an appreciative reception from all Pirates and Gasheads here at the Mem today.
Football has lost a great man at this time. Bobby Robson loved football. He had a remarkable talent for bringing together all of us who share his love of the game. He was a footballer, a football supporter, a good man and a gentleman. It befits the man that at the very start of a new season we come together to celebrate his commitment to our sport, his passion for it and for a wonderful life.
A new season brings with high expectation of success and progress. Over the past three seasons we have enjoyed that and played our own part in it. All associated with the club, supporters, players, management team, staff and directors are aching for that to continue. Hard work, unity and togetherness will take us forward to where we want to be.
It is time to move on and to welcome staff and players joining us from other clubs, as well as new pros and young scholars to the playing ranks. At the same time I am sure you will join me in publicly thanking players who have moved on. Craig Disley, Richard Walker and Craig Hinton were pivotal in securing our promotion from League Two and for sustaining our current league status. Joe Jacobson played a good part. The very best of luck and it is really good to see Hints leading Northampton from the front as their new captain.
Branches of the supporters club have remained very active during the close season and new ones are showing the blue and white shoots of organisation. I am looking to support members on Gloucestershire establish solid branches between now and next May. Please talk to me if you can help. I will be in the clubhouse before and after all home games.
Active and vocal support for our team is vital and so very much appreciated. Branch organisations are a really good vehicle for increasing our away support. Look out for news about away travel from Bristol, Weston super Mare. Norton Radstock, Yate and Sodbury and other areas that are coming on board.
We are all looking for a good start to the season on the pitch, but behind the scenes, we have been getting off to a good start all summer. Season ticket sales are up and hopes run high. Very many thanks to the staff at the stadium and at Kingswood for much hard work through May, June and July.
A great spirit has prevailed through the pre season but now the time has come to push on and to realise the dream. We are up for this, come Rovers, come on.
The Supporters Club has linked up with a newly formed financial company that has been formed by two Rovers fans.
Stephen Wrigley and David Townsend set up Omnis Financial Solutions in May this year. Omnis means “all” in Latin and is based in Downend. The Supporters Club will benefit on a commission basis from any business the company does with our members.
Stephen previously worked for Nationwide as a business development manager covering the south west area and David previously worked for Savills private finance as a mortgage broker.
They describe themselves as “big Rovers fans” and say they have “fond memories” of following Rovers to Wembley and other venues including Derby County.
Omnis can be contacted on:
Or by telephone 0117 9568267.
The firm’s website is www.omnisfs.com
Bookings for travel to our first two away games this season can be made at our Kingswood headquarters or at Pirate Leisure in the Stadium.
Stockport County on Sat Aug 15th
Kick Off 3.00pm, PAY ON THE DAY
SEATS (Open end stand): Adults £17.00, 65+/16 to 21 £12.00, U16’s £6.00
COACH FARE: £17.00 DEPART: Memorial Stadium & Kingswood 9.30am, Eastville 9.45am
STADIUM: Edgeley Park Total capacity: 11,000 (all seated). Away capacity: 1,558 seats.
Hartlepool on Tues Aug 18th
Kick Off 7.45pm, PAY ON THE DAY
SEATS (Covered end behind goal): Adults £20.00, Stu, U16’s & 60+ £10.00
COACH FARE: £29.50 DEPART: Kingswood 11.30am, Eastville 11.45am, Memorial Stadium 12.00pm
STADIUM: Victoria Park Total capacity: 7,629 Away capacity: 961.
Admission to the Supporters Club Bar
A stricter policy is being observed over gaining entry to the bar on matchdays. Members must show their membership cards at the door. Some members may not have yet received their cards for this season so please have last seasons available until the end of August.
Organised Junior Matchday Parties
To register your club for a visit to the Memorial Stadium for a home league game please get your application to David Brain on (07765) 254110 or email [email protected]
Thanks go to Eagle Coaches for supporting this scheme again this season.
Paul Kerslake of Shepton Mallet won £225 in the 50/50 draw at the Liverpool game with ticket number 77018. It was sold by Sue Dry at the Memorial Gates.