The following email letter was sent to OxVox members on 13 June:
At the end of a long and often exhausting season of ups and downs both on and off the pitch and the start of the build up to the season ahead, I’d like firstly to thank all of our members for your continued support. Your voice really matters and it’s been really good speaking to people both at games and at meetings, and getting a feel for how we can better represent you.
This coming season we intend to increase our presence at games, and to position ourselves at other venues where we can engage with fellow fans. We also hope to repeat the very successful Food Bank collection, and have a number of small charity programmes we hope to be involved in. We are also in the early stages of planning an involvement with a larger charity project: we hope to give you more details as the season gets under way.
While it has been nice to take stock at the end of the season, we have also been busy making plans and conducting meetings that we hope will benefit the club and supporters moving forward. One of our priorities for pre-season was to get the East Stand Mural project up and running. As most will know, when we were in contact with the Ultras last season, trying to help with their issues, we discussed revisiting plans for a large mural across the back of the East Stand to cover the drab expanse of white corrugated iron that was obscured by the Ultras’ flags. We wanted to create a permanent mural celebrating the club’s history, while providing fixtures to enable banners etc to be overlaid when required.
The biggest hurdle to getting the project underway was securing confirmation from Firoka that they were happy for us to use this area. This tied in with our long term aim to be more proactive in our communication with all relevant parties connected to the club and in this case, specifically the importance of meeting and establishing a relationship with Firoka and in particular, Firoz and Feroza Kassam.
After trying for a number of months, I recently met with them both in London. After showing them the Mural design, they were happy to allow us to continue, on the proviso that the boards are removable in case in the future that area is used for advertising. Since then, myself, Ali and Trevor have spent half a day in the stands confirming measurements that would allow the sections of mural to be moved to other sections of the ground.
Having secured this permission, the conversation turned to the stadium and what might be possible going forward. The meeting was constructive, but no further information was forthcoming on the stadium arrangements between Firoka and the club. With the club due to meet Firoz Kassam a few days later, he wanted to see what emerged from that meeting before discussing any options. Having established personal contact, we hope to meet them again and follow through on other interesting ideas.
Within the next week we will send you further details of the Mural project and how you can get involved, and we will put information on the OxVox website and social media shortly.
As plans take shape for the coming season, we will keep you up to date with meetings and ongoing projects. We have so far pencilled in a meeting with the new directors at the opening game of the season and we plan to catch up with Tiger and Zaki before then. Our priority topics for those meetings will be a) the financial health of the club, b) the plan to move the club forward sustainably, and c) improving the club’s communication with the fan base. As always we will report back with any news. Please feel free to contact us if you have any questions about the work we do or feel that you may be able to help in any way.
Please see below for the minutes of our committee meeting, held last week.
Finally, a quick reminder that tomorrow, Friday, is the last day to renew and retain your current season ticket seat for next season, after which the seat could be sold to someone else. We hope you’ve renewed yours!
Thank you again for your time and it is with typical pre-season optimism that I finish as always with COYY!