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Campbell Smith

April 18, 2017

WE are extremely sad to hear of the passing of Sons supporter and Sonstrust member Campbell Smith last weekend.

A loyal and true fan, Campbell, who used to work for DFC as a steward when the club played at Boghead, will be missed by those that knew him.

We send our condolences to Campbell’s family and friends at this difficult time.

Thank You!

April 16, 2017

WE had a terrific response to our membership recruitment afternoon yesterday, with over 50 new fans joining the Society.

A huge thank you to our hard working team of volunteers who helped during the day, specifically to Tommy Hughes and Denise Currie along with Stephen Lynch who banged the drum, so to speak!

There is no doubt that our organisation is fully representative of the Dumbarton support, a fact that is important as we continue to help DFC progress in whatever form that may take going forward.

It’s a crucial period now in the club’s long and colourful history and we are determined that Sons fans will be at the forefront of things.

Repeating what we said last week – “We continue to grow as a registered cooperative, a shareholder in Dumbarton FC, the holder of a seat on the club board and the provider of regular services and financial backing to DFC. We are the representative body “for every Dumbarton fan”, as our membership badge proudly makes clear.”

Thank YOU!

Pic by Stephen Watt.

Man of the Match v Dunfermline Athletic

April 16, 2017

Trust member chose DFC goalie Alan Martin as his man of the match for the ‘keeper’s outstanding performance versus Dunfermline Athletic.

Despite the 0-2 scoreline, ‘Aldo’s skills were more than evident during the game.

Good choice Steven!

Pic by Alistair Thorn.

Join us NOW

April 11, 2017

YES, we know, we’ve already publicised this.

But for some things, the message just keeps having to go out.

On Saturday, Dumbarton supporters have the chance to help a forward-thinking Trust move even further forward.

Since our inception in the early 21st century, the Sons Supporters Trust has achieved so much.

Dumbarton’s matchday programme, club website, and the annual awards bash which you can buy tickets for this Saturday.

There – three things that you can list without even having to wrack your brain.

Not to mention keeping the fans up to speed with the ongoing plans regarding the club’s location.

Our members have been a big part of what we’ve achieved. We couldn’t function so well without our membership, which accounts for a large percentage of Dumbarton’s core support.

But we want it to be an even larger percentage. In fact, why shouldn’t it be 100 per cent of those fans aged 16 and over? And more?

That’s why we’re staging a recruitment drive at Saturday’s game with Dunfermline Athletic.

Because we want the positivity to keep growing – and increased member numbers can only help that.

So on Saturday, remember to bring an extra £10 with you (or more if you’re buying tickets for the awards night!).

If you’re not a Trust member, use it to sign up. If you are a Trust member, renew for season 2017/18.

And if you are a Trust member who pays by standing order – use your tenner to sign up another new member! In fact, try to get a new member to join anyway.

There will be somebody you can register – a relative, a friend, maybe even the supporter you sit next to on Saturday who hasn’t joined.

There are only so many people who can be in a stadium to support their football team at any one time.

But there is no limit to the number that can show their support by joining a fans’ organisation like ours.

We’ve made incredible strides as a Trust over the years. We want to keep making them.

And the person who can help us do that? YOU. For only £10 a year.

So don’t just sit in the stand every other Saturday. Join a forward-thinking Trust, or help to boost its numbers alongside yourself.

We look forward to seeing you on Saturday – the more the merrier.

Recruitment drive on Saturday

April 10, 2017

THE Sons Supporters Trust will stage a recruitment drive at Saturday’s home game against Dunfermline Athletic.

Fans who are not yet members of the Trust are invited to sign up for next season NOW, for only £10 per year.

Existing members who do not pay by standing order can also renew their membership on Saturday for the same price.

We’ll be promoting this recruitment drive vigorously throughout the week leading up to the Dunfermline match. Joining the Sons Supporters Trust really is a way to have a say in the future of YOUR football club.

If you’re already convinced you want to join the Trust, you can of course do so now! Email memsecy@sonstrust.net for details.

Trust response to comments by Ian Wilson

April 10, 2017

sonstrustlogoAN article profiling the views of Brabco lead developer and Dumbarton FC director Ian Wilson appeared in the Scottish Sun newspaper on Saturday 8th April 2017, containing various claims about the proposed stadium location and the alleged attitude of Sons fans.

In particular, Ian Wilson stated:

“[N]egativity is coming from a small group. I don’t know if that’s because we’ve not involved them enough but I’m trying to correct that.

 “I’ve met the Sons Trust and other fans to get them involved. I’m incredibly disappointed some fans feel the way they do.”

The Sonstrust board is not aware of the existence of the ‘small group’ being referred to here, or their views, but we are asking Brabco for clarification about this. (We have been actively willing and able to introduce our owners to fans and to enable fans to engage with them. We last did that on a large scale at an open meeting in November 2016.)

For factual clarification, the Sonstrust, unlike any ‘small group’ with whom Mr Wilson is in contact, has a membership that is approximately the same size as the entire season ticket and regularly attending supporter base of Dumbarton FC (not including under-16s, who are not eligible to join a provident society). We continue to grow as a registered cooperative, a shareholder in Dumbarton FC, the holder of a seat on the club board and the provider of regular services and financial backing to DFC. We are the representative body “for every Dumbarton fan”, as our membership badge proudly makes clear. That is based not just on our membership, but on a demonstrable record of listening to and representing the fans, to whom we are accountable, over many years. We also have the active support of our local MSP and of leading figures in the wider Dumbarton community, for which we are very grateful.

The trust’s clearly-stated position on the stadium relocation question is that we are willing to back any plan, whether for relocation or for staying at the Rock, which can guarantee the security and sustainability of the club and demonstrate benefit for supporters, the community and the local environment. Our position is therefore one of constructive engagement, not the negativity Mr Wilson alleges some to be displaying. However, rightly and properly, there are no ‘blank cheques’ as far as the financial security of the club we love is concerned.

What we have been asking for over the period of three years, since Brabco’s proposal was first mooted publicly, is a clear, costed plan that demonstrates the necessity, feasibility and sustainability of a stadium relocation. We are glad that, after many months of us asking, Brabco are now meeting with us and are promising that they will provide evidence as their project moves forward. We have yet to see any plans, but look forward to them being presented. We have made it clear that, in return, we can provide expert local knowledge, as appropriate.

The trust’s responsible stance on the stadium issue is guided by extensive, direct consultation with hundreds of Dumbarton fans, in person, in writing, at two open meetings, through mailings, across four AGMs, and through regular social media contact over many months. This includes nearly 250 comments documented in writing, related to information from the statutory consultations and two open meetings – the most feedback collected by any party so far on these matters, including Brabco and its planning consultant. Fans are therefore well informed on the issues that have been made public so far, but there are naturally still many questions we would like addressed – including those posed by the local press, some of which have not yet been responded to.

The unanimous wish of Dumbarton fans is that whatever is done regarding the stadium should be done in a way that secures the future of the club. We welcome any assurances from Brabco, the controlling shareholders, in this direction, and we look forward to seeing such assurances formulated in a binding way.

There are other important issues raised by Mr Wilson’s interview with the Scottish Sun which are very important to Dumbarton supporters and to all who care about the future of the club.

The main one is the eventual ownership of the proposed new stadium. Fans have made it abundantly and overwhelmingly clear to us that they wish the stadium to be owned outright by the club. We do not see any tax issues getting in the way of that, but will engage directly with Brabco and the club about technical and legal matters, based on the top-level, independent financial advice. We had thought that this issue was on the way to being resolved in a satisfactory way, but it appears from Ian Wilson’s statement that it is “likely” that the club will not own the stadium. We are seeking urgent clarification about this. We want the best possible solution, of course.

We remain positive about the future of the club, the capacity of fans to ensure its survival and flourishing along with the hard-working club board, and our ability to ensure that any stadium development or relocation is done in the appropriate way, with proper accountability, evidence and transparency.

Dumbarton fans will always be positive about plans to strengthen and develop our club in ways that involve them and are credible. Suggestions to the contrary, from whatever source, are unhelpful, disrespectful and wrong. The Sonstrust continues to believe that the best way for Brabco to demonstrate their goodwill is to back our call for a club AGM or EGM, at which all shareholders can ask questions and make comment about the largest development this historic club will ever have been involved in.

We are also monitoring progress on bringing our controlling shareholders’ operations fully onshore, and we note that fans would still like to know the identity of all owners of the club. This kind of openness is the way to address lingering doubts or fears from whatever quarter.

Sonstrust Awards Night 2016/17

April 5, 2017

WE have had a few enquiries, in person and via social media, about the Sonstrust end-of-season awards night for season 2016/17.

As we have seen over the last couple of seasons, there is the possibility for the final day Championship fixtures to be moved for TV coverage. This was particularly prevalent last season, when the matches were moved to the Sunday at less than a month’s notice.

Once we know whether this is the case again this season, and if so, when the fixtures are moved to, we will be able to make a firm announcement on arrangements for the annual awards bash.

In the meantime – don’t make any plans for either Saturday or Sunday evening on the first weekend in May, when Dumbarton’s season ends at home to Falkirk!

As previously advised, voting will take place for the Player and Young Player of the Year Awards at the home game with Dunfermline Athletic on Saturday, April 15.

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