Jim’s Jottings

November 19, 2017

Many of us attended the funeral of Vice President and former Club Chairman Geoff Dunford. It was a typical ‘Rovers funeral’ where all the great and good from our famous old club gathered in a packed Keynsham church to pay their last respects. It was a great turn-out for a great man.

I wonder what many of the past players and managers thought of Rovers’ rapid fall from grace into non-League and the subsequent climb back to respectability in League 1. The ‘post-Christmas’ improvement has been a feature in each of Darrell Clarke’s campaigns in charge so far and let’s hope it’s business as usual as we ‘concentrate on the League’ once more although a nice cup run is obviously something both he and the fan base would love to savor in the future.

The Friday night collapse at Meadow Lane after Rovers had taken an early two-goal lead thanks to a couple of fine headed goals was a big blow, especially as we should have also had a penalty but the referee gave us nothing and the big Notts forwards easily ‘bullied’ their progress into round 2. Another lack-lustre display here against Swindon got rid of any further involvement in the much discredited Checkatrade Trophy, something that many supporters will see as a blessing. However, any sort of a cup run brings the club additional income as well as a boost to confidence so I view our exit as a big disappointment.

So it was that we returned back up the M42 last Saturday for a tough encounter at high-flying Scunthorpe with another depleted squad, both ‘first-choice’ centre backs being on international duty and several players out injured. Some of these should be back in action today but anyone who made the long trip to ‘Scunny’ will feel sorry if either Tom Broadbent or Rollin Menayese is left out after putting in a great shift at Glanford Park. The entire defence gave everything as did the whole team in fact and to lose to a 94th-minute goal was a real sickener. Perhaps ‘Locks’ could play in front of the back four but that’s only my idea and I’ll never make it as a football coach!

Following the Supporters Club’s recent Annual General Meeting the Committee met the following week to discuss a major issue that will become public in due course and also to sort out the various positions made vacant during the last eighteen months or so. The club has been without a Vice-Chairman since Chris Walker stood down last season and long-serving Matchday Organiser Phil Draper has stepped-up to undertake this role whilst continuing to run our sales cabin in the car park on match days. Our erstwhile Secretary Sue Williams has also been carrying out the Treasurer’s duties alongside her secretarial role and she has now taken over the former position permanently. This move left a gap filled by David Thomas who has become Club Secretary. David will continue his fine work on our website as well as taking the minutes at meetings in future.

Helen Wigmore will continue to organise the Share Scheme for the time being although this may alter if we elect another Director to replace Brian Seymour Smith in due course. The Football Club has indicated they do not see the need for a replacement as they consider one S.C. Director to be more than sufficient in a greatly reduced Board of just four members at present compared with the eight that served on the Board before the takeover. However, we have legally binding agreement for a second BRSC Director, in substitution for the right to appoint an Associate Director, having subscribing for and being allocated 200,000 Subscription Shares. We are currently in negotiations with the FC Chairman regarding this important issue.

Talking of the Share Scheme, it was nice to have a decent take-up of members to a buffet in the Executive Bar before the Checkatrade Trophy match here against Swindon and this is something we would like to repeat in future but of course it is difficult to fit in availability in a hectic League campaign when all the bars are normally busy. Those who continue to pay into the Scheme certainly deserve some reward for their loyalty.

We are very much need three points today so please get behind the boys in blue and white– Up the Pirates!

Jim Chappell.

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