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Thread: Dartford Match-day Programme - Trust Notes

  1. #11
    I am not a believer in Chairmen or former chairmen spending too much time on Social media – far better to talk face to face, but I will make an exception just this once given my experience as a long-term member of the Trust Board, a long term member of the management board and several years as vice chairman and chairman of that MB.

    Personally I strongly believe that programmes are places for opinions – with so much social media around news roundups have their place but are often covered elsewhere. That said, I am longer editor, so its not my call, but in the nearly 30 years I was involved in its production, most as editor, there are many times when I published things that I didn’t fully agree with secure in the knowledge that (within reason) that is not going to damage the club or weaken the message of those in charge. Football clubs are made up of opinions and strong football clubs embrace that. Clubs that suppress it are ultimately weakened. Matt - you yourself benefited from that policy on many occasions, and I think you will acknowledge that your own biases (we all have them) found space in the programme on a regular basis, as did others.

    I think Taff’s piece is perfectly balanced and shows a strong support for both Rods appointment of Chris (who I agree is an excellent appointment), but I also think he is right to say a little about Tim, and I completely support that because unlike some who have commented on social media, I KNOW what he has brought to the club over decades. When Tim was with us the first time he transformed the club on the playing side and brought in a professionalism that persists to this day. When he went upstairs he helped Boris immeasurably, and he continued to do that all the time he was away. He gave up a great job at Newport to come back and save us from what looked like certain relegation on a contract for a fraction of the money – and then waived every single penny of that contract for the benefit of the club, including the very many performance bonuses he could have claimed but didn’t. But beyond all of that Tim constantly contributed to the things the club couldn’t afford – the video analysis equipment and software which took our professionalism to another level was hugely expensive – all paid for by Tim, not the club. When he went that was left with the club because he didn’t want it disadvantaged. Then there is the commercial work he did, those who know the effort that takes will know what Tim put in, never switching off, working long hours, never taking anything out of it for himself.

    If anyone has any hard facts that Tim put himself in front of the club then where are they because I have been at the heart of the running of the club for a long long time, and all I have ever seen from that man is dedication to the club he still loves, and at considerable personal cost. People have very short and partial memories (another trait of football)

    The fact that Rico has left for Hereford is painful for me personally, because he is such a talented and exciting coach who will develop into an exceptional manager – but also one of the most thoroughly decent people I have ever met. Rico is entitled to pursue his career – I know he wont have taken the decision lightly, but nobody forced him, and I believe he came out top from a handful of interviewed candidates, again, that’s football. . The fact that Tim, Nick and I felt compelled to try to force some issues with our resignations last year is one of the most painful regrets of my entire life, and still hurts more than anyone will know, even though it was absolutely the right decision.

    And yes, I too consider myself a friend of Tim Harris (though he will probably be cross with me for saying the above!). But let me make one thing very clear – if Tim Harris did anything to damage the club then he would be getting a phone call from me and a piece of my mind, because the club I have made huge sacrifices for over 30 years will always come first. There are various perspectives of what has happened in recent weeks and most people make a judgement on assumption and almost no direct knowledge – again that’s football.

    I hope we are not entering a phase in this clubs history where any debate is suppressed or punishable by the ostracization of good people, and I also regret the (again, very typically football) trait of people going from heroes to villains when they leave the club – whether it be chairman, managers, players or whoever – each phase in a clubs history stands or falls on its merits – and one does not threaten another because all will be done differently and in different circumstances….. to be successful you don’t have to paint the past as failure, or compare one with the other though again, not uncommon in football

    Whilst there are of course limits (that some have chosen to far exceed in the past to be fair) I think the greatest gift the Trust can give the MB (apart from the huge amount of money it has gifted) is to be a supportive but constructively critical friend – Taff has been exactly that for the benefit of the club and all supporters – and as he said, immediately reached out to Chris Todd from his holiday to ensure he knew he would enjoy the same support that his predecessors have. Taff is superb at balancing all the competing pressures of a fan-lead organisation, it’s a rare gift that I certainly appreciated and I am not alone in that. Taffs love of this club is as strong as anyone’s and both the clubs and supporters are very lucky to have him as trust chair. He makes this club stronger by the way he has run the trust, and he certainly speaks for me and I simply cannot see why a club such as ours would see the above as inappropriate or damaging in any way! As a club we are surely far stronger than that...

  2. #12

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    Excellent piece Mike.

    I fear that the club is on the verge of entering an 'Us & Them' phase, with the MB not accepting any public criticism and that could spell the end of Gloucester City as a friendly welcoming place as it has been in all the time that I've been involved (with the exception of the short spell between KG & CG).

  3. #13
    Well I guess myself and a vast majority of others I speak to must be in the minority (somehow) who are completely fed up of being “little old Gloucester City”
    We’ve finally got a MB at the club who are actually in touch with supporters and just don’t wanna settle for the possibility of a cup run to raise funds and cup cakes at away games...
    I’m not gonna come on here and slagTim off etc as he’s done so much for my lad and myself over the years especially as he knows I’m not everyone’s cup of tea at the club...But being privy to certain information myself also as Matt says it’s a miracle Rod and Co have kept cool...
    People are not always what they appear to be and I know this all to well...
    You’re either on the New Era Express or not...The club is coming home and everyone in their power should be behind EMG in supporting this...

  4. #14
    I look forward to the next article. "Why Jason Eaton is misunderstood"

  5. #15
    You're my cup of tea.


    With a biscuit.
    Pitying people who need to drink alcohol to have a good time since 4th June 2017.

  6. #16
    Quote Originally Posted by daveangel View Post
    You're my cup of tea.


    With a biscuit.
    I’d rather be a Vimto

  7. #17
    Excellent post Mike and well said

  8. #18
    Quote Originally Posted by Ray Tango View Post
    Well I guess myself and a vast majority of others I speak to must be in the minority (somehow) who are completely fed up of being “little old Gloucester City”
    We’ve finally got a MB at the club who are actually in touch with supporters and just don’t wanna settle for the possibility of a cup run to raise funds and cup cakes at away games...
    I’m not gonna come on here and slagTim off etc as he’s done so much for my lad and myself over the years especially as he knows I’m not everyone’s cup of tea at the club...But being privy to certain information myself also as Matt says it’s a miracle Rod and Co have kept cool...
    People are not always what they appear to be and I know this all to well...
    You’re either on the New Era Express or not...The club is coming home and everyone in their power should be behind EMG in supporting this...
    I agree with this. We have to change. The danger with being too small is that everyone knows everyone. It's not really healthy when decisions have to be made.

    People come and people go. Supporters don't. We all need to be on the same side.

  9. #19
    And another thing...Correct me if I’m wrong but weren’t we constantly told that Noah Smerdon couldn’t be placed on contract? Chris Todd comes and within less than week gets him on contract!!

    That’s proper shit housery if you ask me?

  10. #20
    Regardless of what the ‘truth’ is or what anyone thinks of the events of the last few weeks, the fact remains that the matchday programme really isn’t the appropriate place for sticking up for your mate. The club had moved on, and everything that needed to be said on the issue had already been said.
    If you want opinions then this forum, Trust social media etc are perfect for that as we’ve seen today. There is a massive difference between censorship or suppression of opinion, and not allowing people to say whatever the hell they want in official club literature.

    Ive tried to put together a programme which I think will interest people. No, I don’t think that piece would have been damaging to the club, but then I don’t think that a piece on fly fishing would have been damaging to the club either. The programme isn’t there to pander to anyone’s self-indulgences.

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