▪ What is Blues Trust?
Blues Trust is a democratic, non-profit organisation set up for supporters of Birmingham City Football Club. Blues Trust is one of 170 Supporters’ Trusts. Supporters’ Trusts exist at football clubs right across the footballing spectrum, including Manchester United, Swansea City, Liverpool and Tottenham Hotspur to Coventry City, Exeter City, York City and Wrexham.
Blues Trust was registered with the Financial Services Authority (FSA) on 21st February 2012 and is by law required to produce annual, independently examined accounts.
As of July 2013, the Blues Trust Board is made up of four elected Board members appointed at the Trust’s first Annual General Meeting (AGM) in October 2012. There are an additional three co-opted Board members, excluding the Trust’s secretary and any other associate Board members. Elected Board members are to serve for a minimum period of two years.
▪ How can I become a member of Blues Trust?
The easiest way to become a member of Blues Trust is by completing the online application form. We do however recognise that not all Birmingham City supporters have internet access, so we provide a number of alternative methods to make the signup process as easy as possible.
Online application form
Completing our online application form is a quick, easy and hassle free way of becoming a Blues Trust member. Upon completing the form, you will be automatically transferred to a secure PayPal payment page where you’ll be able to pay your membership fee. You can find the online application form here.
Offline application form
If you unable to sign up online or do not have a PayPal account, you can download a copy of our offline application form here. To become a member, complete the form and send it via post to the Trust’s mailing address:
℅ Royal George Hotel Bar
We accept both cash payments and cheques. If choosing to pay your membership fee by cheque, please make the cheque payable to Blues Supporters Society Limited.
We also accept bank transfer as a method of payment. Simply complete our online application form and select ‘bank transfer’ from the payment options menu. You will be redirected to a web page containing our bank account details.
Junior membership is free for anyone under the age of 16. To sign up as a junior member, please use the separate junior signup form here.
▪ You can’t realistically buy Birmingham City. What’s the point?
It is unlikely that Blues Trust would be able to generate the required financial capital to fund a complete buyout of Birmingham City Football Club. Aims and objectives vary at different Supporters’ Trusts. Blues Trust’s principle aim is to establish a unified voice for Birmingham City supporters, secure representation and influence within Birmingham City Football Club and help safeguard the Club’s long term future. We recognise that some Birmingham City supporters do not wish to be associated with Blues Trust and fully respect individuals’ views. Thus, it is for this reason that Blues Trust only speaks and acts on behalf of its members.
Whilst we believe that the Birmingham City Board, Chairmen and employees should be allowed to run the club without interference, we also believe that as temporary custodians of the club they have a responsibility to engage with Birmingham City supporters in an equal, mutually beneficial partnership.
▪ Supporters’ Trusts only work where clubs have gone into administration or have suffered deep financial hardship. Why bother?
It is true that some Supporters’ Trusts have been established at clubs during times of financial instability or administrative issues. Notable examples include Swansea City (Swans Trust), Portsmouth (Pompey Trust) and Leicester City (Foxes Trust). However Supporters’ Trusts can and have played a much bigger role in improving football’s overall governance. Trusts have been established at Manchester United, Arsenal, Tottenham Hotspur and Chelsea, none of whom are currently suffering from a prolonged period of financial instability. Given the uncertainties over Birmingham City’s finances and ownership, we would like to ensure that supporters have a structure through which they can work with the club both now and in the future. We believe that, whilst the Board have a duty of care to run the club in the interests of the supporters, we as fans have a duty to make sure there is an open and transparent mechanism in which problems can be addressed and issues dealt with. The Supporters’ Trust model is a successful way that allows supporters and football clubs to work together.
▪ Fan protests have been tried at Blues before and have never worked. Why should you be any different?
Blues Trust is not a protest group. As supporters, we can successfully engage with the club in a positive manner. We aim to create an open, transparent and democratic structure through which fans can raise their own concerns. However this does not mean that we are anti-protest should a particular situation warrant it.
▪ If the Board does not want to engage with you or if supporters don’t want you, what’s the point in a Trust?
Each Supporters’ Trust has its own individual issues and priorities. Some have succeeded in securing fan representation on their respective clubs’ Boards, others have been successful in securing a stake in their clubs. Some Trusts still exist solely to deal with their own unique circumstances. It will be up to the Blues Trust membership as a democratic organisation to decide its priorities and success level indicators.
▪ How much is this going to cost me and what is my fee used for?
Full membership (16 and above) is £5 per annum, while juniors under the age of 16 can join free of charge. All members aged 16 and above will be entitled to vote. Your membership fee helps us cover essential administrative costs incurred through the hiring of meeting venues, the Trust’s subscription to Supporters Direct and ensures that your supporters organisation operates on a stable financial footing in both the short and long term. All Trust Board members are volunteers and do not receive any salary for the work they undertake on behalf of Trust members.