BCFC: Fan Engagement Announcement

3 Nov 2023

Blues Trust was pleased to see an announcement from the Club on Wednesday evening which began to set out its plans for engagement with supporters. After years of campaigning for any form of proper, structured and meaningful dialogue between the Club and its supporters, the measures identified represent a significant and welcome step forward in the Trust’s view.

If you haven’t already seen the announcement, it can be found here

On 8 May, in his open letter to supporters, Tom Wagner made clear his determination to involve fans in shaping decisions taken by the Club. So the Club is to be applauded for honouring yet another commitment so quickly.

But, as always, the devil will be in the detail. It will ultimately determine whether the new measures are indeed a meaningful framework for constructive engagement or, alternatively, simply a means for the Club to impose it’s ideas, objectives and plans in the guise of consultation. Perhaps it’s the Trust’s experience of past owners that still provokes caution. We will see in the fullness of time of course, but the Trust has much more confidence in the new regime to do the right thing than was ever the case previously.

A significant component of the proposals announced is the focus on Blues Matters, the official fan engagement programme to be launched in January of next year. This is described as the official constructive communication channel between the Club and its fans. That it would appear to be based on what currently exists at Manchester City is not entirely surprising, nor is it necessarily a bad thing. The transformation of that club over the last decade or so is remarkable and has to be acknowledged.

Information about City Matters can be found here. It might offer more than a clue about what we can expect going forward.

In his letter on 8 May, Tom Wagner also explained that the recommendations outlined in the 2021 Fan Led Review would be used to shape what the Club does. Those recommendations are robust and have the potential to change the role and dynamic for supporters at every football club. It is too early to be sure whether that will be achieved at Blues through the measures outlined on Wednesday, but the Trust will continue to support and encourage the Club to embrace fan engagement in its fullest sense so that supporters have real opportunities to influence key and strategic matters going forward.

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