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The Only Way Is Up 6th February 2020 16.35:00

Email and letters to the Board
 
A few weeks ago, I suggested on here that a thread be started to record as a library the emails and letters sent to the Boards of the WST and the WAFC by fans showing their offers to help or advise, or express opinions about the state of the Club. Further, it would enable supporters to see what response (if any!) had been received in reply.

At the time, yet another email that I'd sent to the Trust had been ignored by them, or had not brought from them any kind of reply, nor even an acknowledgement of receipt.

Now, many weeks on from that first email, the situation hasn't changed, though the Operational Board Q&As might be thought to cover some of the issues raised by supporters in general.

The next post in this thread will be a copy of the email sent to them. If this thread is allowed to run and become a sticky, it might be a useful reference for fans to judge whether or not our opinions are heeded - or otherwise.
Please add your own emails sent to them and responses received.

The Only Way Is Up 6th February 2020 16.40:40

Re: Email and letters to the Board
 
1. Email sent to the WST on 29th November 2019:

Good evening (as we are 7 hours ahead of GMT here in Thailand.)

As I expect the Board of the WST and the Football Club is aware, there are few fans that are happy with the present performance of the Club on the field.

I’m not sure quite how you determine that however, as I can’t find a fans’ forum on the club website through which opinions can be expressed or responded to, and your failure to respond to criticism in other social media makes it seem that you don’t care about fans’ thoughts. Some would go as far as to say that there have been attempts by the club to ban some fan opinions – even if those opinions are justified. Don’t ignore your cash cows.

You should be aware that there is a growing feeling of dismay at the match results, and indeed at the players’ performances – which have led to our lowest ever position in the club’s long history.

Transparency – or rather the lack of it – was a frequent criticism by fans of previous club owners and, when ownership by the fans was achieved, transparency was considered a real benefit. After all, without the fans, where would the club be today? I’m sure that you know the answer, though you could be forgiven for forgetting that as the common refrain from the Club now seems to be that the Board (Club and Trust) has performed wonders with very little regard being paid to the fans, be they local to Wrexham, or anywhere else in Wales, the UK, or overseas. That comes over to the fans as arrogant in the extreme, particularly when news from the club about what is actively being done to remedy the performances urgently required to a) avoid a growing risk of relegation and, b) the acute reduction in match income as has been recorded during matches following an horrific away record of defeats, and (apart from a very rare high-scoring home draw at the weekend) a goal scoring record that is now one of the worst in a poor league.

Claims that points were gained from 2 good results against teams at and near the top of the league must be overbalanced by some quite appalling results, home and away. Never, in my 60-odd years of supporting Wrexham has each match day brought with it the almost certain inevitability that results remain dreadful.

Managerial appointments have failed abysmally. It is no good suggesting that our last two managers have entertained the fans. The fact remains that neither of them has shown the success demanded by paying fans and sponsors since our relegation from L2. Of course it is true that neither of them is responsible for anything that happened before they were appointed. Nevertheless, it is equally true that neither of them had a points per game tally of even 1! That is relegation form without any doubt at all, and unless immediate changes are made at managerial level, coaching level, or player level, then the current form is going to see us in the sixth tier next season. The ONLY answer to this is to score more goals, and to concede fewer. As a Board, you should know this. It concerns many that you DO recognise this, but seem incapable of effecting positive change. Your stock is now at a low ebb. The fact that you are the ultimate backstops now and are being castigated for the state of the club now both on and off the pitch puts you in the same dreadful light as the dubious characters who owned the club before you, and that is a shocking position to be in.

Some roles within the Trust have been very effectively performed, and we are all as fans happy to have been a part of the club’s saving grace when our existence was previously threatened. We think of you, as fans yourselves, applying the principles of fans ownership and creating the best possible atmosphere for fans and players alike through success on the pitch as well as in the annual accounts. Credit is due where you have kept us in the black. Many fans are now saying that it is primarily due to football fortune and not necessarily good management that’s brought it about though, and you must by now be aware that there is a faction of dissatisfied club supporters seeking to force an EGM with a few to creating change. Fortunately, they are led by people who have little knowledge of the correct procedures required to generate sufficient active support to force the issue. Time is on their side however, and if the results on the pitch and certain other matters off it don’t change for the better very quickly, they will gain that active support as other, better equipped, individuals join them.

One of the criticisms that would effect a rapid change of opinions among fans is transparency. There are so many examples of fans (owners!!!) being kept in the dark about the work you must all be doing to ensure positive change that I don’t need to list examples. Suffice it to say that I have had considerable experience of working for organisations that produce minutes of their meetings for members to understand what is happening. Never have I known any of them neglect to produce Board minutes for several months. Why are the Board’s most recent minutes on the website those for your August 2019 meeting? It is almost December now, and there should have been a further three Board meetings since August. Is it any wonder that fans worry about this lack of information? We are updated about a number of things which have no bearing on the playing results. Is this what you as a board now focus your attentions on? Have you really abdicated your responsibilities to provide fans with information about what is needed in order to achieve success on the pitch? I’m sure that many fans would be delighted to share their opinions on this.

All is not lost. Yet, anyway. Tell the fans what is being done. Explain why we are recruiting players without any goalscoring history to change our results. Explain to us why relatively unknown clubs are now ahead of us in the pyramid while we languish a point off the bottom of the table and in danger of finding ourselves there at 5pm on Saturday unless there is a radical change in performance. Many of those clubs caould be compared to us when we played Burnley in the FA Cup years ago, when Bob Lord was interviewed by the national press ahead of our match and said “Who do Wrexham think they are if they think they’re going to beat us?” We lost then, just as we are losing now to minnows compared to where we should be. Fans see our match attendances and compare them with teams that struggle to entice a few hundred fans through their turnstiles – yet those clubs are ahead of us, and it is due to our poor performances – not that they have spent more than us on their squads.

There is a nagging doubt about the effectiveness of our coaching staff. A part-time coach that has seen us underperform now for several seasons. Managers have come and gone in that time, but results remain underwhelming. It is the commonality of those two facts that are inescapable. Why, when most other clubs bring in their own coaches, do we have the same coaches that have failed us every season since we arrived in the Conference? A Trophy win is meaningless to fans demanding league football season after season.

How low do attendances have to fall, and what is your deadline for results to improve to the degree that we at least look as though we might achieve sufficient points to escape relegation this season? These are serious questions, not borne out of anger of even frustration, but they are a reflection on the stated belief of at least one Board member that the club doesn’t need anyone else on board, that you have all the necessary skills already. This may explain why members complain that their offers of assistance as volunteers, or by way of submitting ideas to help are ignored or turned down flat. It creates an impression that the Board is a clique, which has been stated for more than one season.

Let’s have updates on club improvements.
Let’s see Board minutes
Let’s read that players are being set performance targets that have consequences when they are not achieved – just as we, as owners, should know when they are to be rewarded with win bonuses.
Let’s get back to a position where members and fans alike are united in their support for the club, instead of the current situation when there is a growing division among fans, and an ever-worsening divide between members/fans and the Trust.

Your interest in Wrexham AFC’s future, and your interest in retaining fans will be measured by your reply.

Good luck on Saturday, but let’s hear that YOU are doing positive things about turning this dreadful season around.



[I]As of today, 6th February 2020, there has been no response from the WST.[/I]

The Only Way Is Up 6th February 2020 16.46:23

Re: Email and letters to the Board
 
2. Here is a follow-up email sent to The WST on 29 December 2019:

To whom it may concern:

This is a follow up message to those who are steering the club right now.

It is now exactly a month since I wrote the email copied below, and there has been no reply.

I’m unable to reconcile the ignorance being displayed by the Trust/Club in failing to acknowledge the message, as a result of which I can only agree with other critics of your failure to engage with lifelong supporters (and owners) who are frustrated by the lack of positive action by the club to address the issues raised here and on social media about the incompetence being demonstrated at every level within the club.

Transparency was an issue that the Trust promised would be addressed when it took over as the vehicle for Fans Ownership. It is patently obvious that you are not equipped to run the playing side of the club and this is very likely to result, this season, in relegation to the sixth tier – a far cry from the second tier football enjoyed by many of us under different management.

I had every faith in the ability of the Trust to manage the club in an efficient and sustainable way, but the public image of the Trust is restricted to the personalities that represent it on the Board, and I’m sorry to say that the image has worsened season after season which is a disgrace given the numbers of members involved who could be helping at a practical level. Instead, I read complaints that ideas put forward aren’t even acknowledged, let alone implemented.

There is something intrinsically wrong at the club right now. If you don’t know what it is, then you shouldn’t be representing its owners. An investigation is necessary. Funds have been made available for you to address this. That’s money invested by fans – as well as “football fortune” sums of some significance. Yet, here we are near the bottom of the fifth tier and with a shocking record against our fellow strugglers on the pitch when other clubs with far less financial clout than us fill the places above us in this league from which we should have been promoted several seasons ago.

It is your job to address this. If you can’t do so, you will be asked to stand down soon. Trust membership is being compromised by the shambolic public face on display. Attendances are collapsing. Income is significantly reduced as a result of those factors, and time to rescue the situation is fast running out. Team management decisions taken are beyond the pale. Player recruitment has been shockingly bad – or, if good players are in fact being brought in, there is a major issue with their coaching as almost without exception, they receive justifiable criticism week-in week-out based upon the team’s results. Fans can see the reasons why, so why can’t those who are responsible for the falling standards address them in a timely manner? If the answer is that you don’t have the necessary skills, then make way for others who do.

A win away at Chorley on New Year’s Day won’t see an end to the current problems. It is going to require far greater consistency both on and off the pitch to rescue this season and – ultimately – the future of our once-great club. If not, then you must address the issues immediately. If you simply don’t care any more (and many believe that to be the case now) then state your intentions to resign. Walk away for pity’s sake before the club collapses.

[I]No reply nor an acknowledgement of receipt was received.[/I]

The Only Way Is Up 6th February 2020 17.13:44

Re: Email and letters to the Board
 
3. I was involved in discussions with a prominent member of a Thai Premier League club in the Autumn of 2017, with a view to his possible involvement at WAFC as a benefactor or sponsor. My correspondence to Spencer Harris was ignored, and after several weeks had elapsed, I made contact again with the Trust. Quite a while later, I received an offensive email from Peter Jones, questioning my loyalty to the fans ownership model by discussing the potential involvement with the Thai man, but asking to know if the Thai's interest remained. As such a long time had elapsed since my first email was sent, I advised PJ that the Thai had assumed (correctly it seemed) that the WST did not wish to pursue his interest, and there was no further correspondence on the subject until I read a FB post by Richard Ulrich in his capacity then as a WST Board member. I wrote to him as follows on 24 April 2018:

Hi Richard,

It saddens me that there is an element amongst football fans that relishes in distributing malicious information about individuals, players, teams, clubs and their officers. I’m sure that as lifelong supporters of Wrexham AFC we are both perplexed that anyone calling him (or her) self a fan can deliberately propagate or spread such information about the team that they claim to support.

Whilst it might be the case that some of them are repeating nonsense that they may have heard elsewhere, or have deliberately manipulated stories they’ve picked up from friends and the media, others do from time to time dream up items which they proclaim to be the truth in order to destabilise the status quo. Included within the latter group are those who have been told facts that they subsequently misrepresent in order to perpetuate their outpourings. Many may lack the intelligence to retain information and understanding about the complex activities within their club. As a consequence, it is quite dangerous to attempt to correct their outbursts without adding more fuel to their accusations, and I feel that the club and the Trust does well not to respond to every criticism that is made of them.

I read an item on social media recently where someone representing the club turned defence of the Target 10K initiative into a quite aggressive argument against the fans expected to co-operate with that initiative. The article appears to have been withdrawn now, but I was astonished at the tone of its author who seemed to have forgotten that the customer is king. The gist of it was a misunderstanding by some fans that the club hoped for a 10k attendance at the Fylde game brought about by an ambiguously worded announcement of the scheme. Other fans interpreted the content as an attempt to create a Red Wall by filling the lower section of the stand with some 3,000 fans, increasing the capacity of the ground to 10,000 as a result. Many others believed that despite the truly incredible collapse of our promotion challenge in recent weeks, the club still expected fans to respond by filling the ground – something that reactionary fans felt was taking the presumed arrogance of Wrexham’s senior management to new heights.

Your post in the Wrexham AFC fans chat on Facebook has been refreshing to read as a non-confrontational response to the above and similarly contentious issues. There was however one area in which the explanation you gave is at odds with reality, and it involved me. I had spoken with a prominent Thai football club official about investment in overseas clubs. He has quite extensive experience and connections with the Bundesliga as well as his involvement with a senior club in Thailand. At the conclusion of our conversation, he expressed an interest in discovering any ways that a legitimate link could be forged with Wrexham. He had been made aware of the Fans’ Ownership model, and saw opportunities that could benefit his interests in football as well as Wrexham’s, more along the lines of investment in sponsorship rather than any kind of acquisition. Because of that, I emailed Spencer with bare details, but the email wasn’t acknowledged. I wrote again after a few weeks had passed, addressing that email to the Secretary instead. Some time later, I received a quite unpleasant email back from Pete Jones accusing me of turning my back on the Trust’s principles of fans’ ownership – despite my 100% conviction that it is the only way forward for the club. Why else would I have been instrumental in the forming of the Trust in the first place. In my (polite) reply to him I pointed that out, and in response to his enquiry about any ongoing interest from the Thai man explained that as many weeks had now passed since I had first written to Spencer without the slightest interest being shown from the club or the trust until Pete’s half-hearted and very late response, that the Thai had –rightly or wrongly – assumed that any potential relationship between the parties was at an end, and that he had subsequently moved on. There was no further reply from either the club or the Trust.

Months later, an anonymous poster on Red Passion had somehow heard about the Thai interest, but made allegations about several people including myself. Another Red Passion contributor (whose identity the anonymous poster has adopted) has involved the UK Police as a consequence. Unbelievably, it has been claimed that the person concerned is a Wrexham AFC employee.

Here is an extract from his post:

From the alias "Neil Cooke" on Facebook:

Just been reading a thread on Red Poison about how the WST Board have turned down investment again apparently. I know the story behind this I was talking someone who had the inside in Thailand over Christmas. The man posting this crap is based in Thailand and he was on the piss with some Thai hotel owner who is laundering money via football clubs in Thailand and lower league German teams. The Thai based Wrexham 'fan' was trying to impress this gangster by saying he had influence and wanted to act as a go between. The Trust were approached and saw through this, but were threatened by this 'fan' that he would go public if they didn't get involved. They stood up to him.

The writer of that piece, whoever he (or she) is has included something within the post that he couldn’t possibly know about had he not been discussing the matter with someone with access to the correspondence or who is close to Peter, Spencer, or other parties privy to the correspondence between us.

As you can imagine, I wasn’t best pleased at the attitude demonstrated by Peter and the earlier message ignored by Spencer (some would argue reasonably that the eventual response was a strong indicator that the Trust and/or the Club really isn’t open to discussion about external investment – a frequently voiced complaint about the organisations from a number of fans. I have continued to defend the Trust’s position against such claims despite the negative reaction that I received from them. ) When I first became aware of the libellous nature of the allegations made by “Neil Cooke” I disregarded it as the work of a self-seeking crank. There has however been some further activity by that person, with the message regarding the Thai connection being repeated during the last week or two. One Red Passion poster claims to have received a threatening visit from him or someone purporting to be him. As previously stated, the Police are now involved.

The purpose of writing to you today is to correct that part of your post to the Facebook page referred to earlier, in which you wrote:

"THE CLUB HAS TURNED DOWN INVESTMENT"

"We have had two enquiries about investing in the club since we took over in 2011, one was from an Italian group and another was from an investor in Thailand. We spoke to both of these groups and offered to set up meetings to explore these offers further but we never heard anything back from them. The board cannot turn down any offer of investment as we are legally obliged to put this to the membership (owners) and it would be for them to decide and vote on the matter, not us."

I feel that now would be an appropriate time to withdraw your claim that you never heard anything back, and to correct your statement in the light of the correct information that you now have.

I also feel that in view of the claim that “Neil Cooke” works for the club, that the post made by him needs to be investigated within the club in order to avoid further incidences that msy be damaging to the clu or the Trust or both.

You are welcome to call me on the following UK phone number that I can access here in Thailand: xxxxx xxxxxx. Rates are for normal National calls.

It may be that the eventual outcome of any legal proceedings taken against the impostor “Neil Cooke” could include the claim that he works for the club, and it could also throw up evidence regarding the contents of my correspondence with the Trust that disagrees with your own statement. You must not regard that as an implied threat: far from it, in fact. I wish to ensure that the nonsense “false news” emanating from fans who really should know better if they really have the interest of their club at heart is stopped to avoid further negative claims arising from such “false news.”


[I]Yet again, there was no reply received to that message.[/I]

LL11 2AH 6th February 2020 17.17:04

Re: Email and letters to the Board
 
Here are the email addresses for the football club board members.

Peter Jones [email]chairman@wst.org.uk[/email]
Josh Williams [email]secretary@wst.org.uk[/email]
Spencer Harris [email]spencer.harris@wrexhamfc.tv[/email]
Gavin Jones [email]gavin.jones@wrexhamfc.tv[/email]
Mark Williams [email]mark.williams@wrexhamfc.tv[/email]
Phil Salmon [email]phil.salmon@wrexhamfc.tv[/email]
Dixie McNeil [email]dixie.mcneil@wrexhamfc.tv[/email]
John Mills [email]john.mills@wrexhamfc.tv[/email]
[size=1][i]Posted via mobile theme[/i][/size]

Hometown Unicorn 6th February 2020 17.22:10

Re: Email and letters to the Board
 
[QUOTE=LL11 2AH;2341854]Here are the email addresses for the football club board members.

Peter Jones [email]chairman@wst.org.uk[/email]
Josh Williams [email]secretary@wst.org.uk[/email]
Spencer Harris [email]spencer.harris@wrexhamfc.tv[/email]
Gavin Jones [email]gavin.jones@wrexhamfc.tv[/email]
Mark Williams [email]mark.williams@wrexhamfc.tv[/email]
Phil Salmon [email]phil.salmon@wrexhamfc.tv[/email]
Dixie McNeil [email]dixie.mcneil@wrexhamfc.tv[/email]
John Mills [email]neil.cooke@wrexhamfc.tv[/email]
[size=1][i]Posted via mobile theme[/i][/size][/QUOTE]

ftfy

GiggityGiggityGiggityGoo 6th February 2020 17.31:14

Re: Email and letters to the Board
 
Peter Jones, another for the bin, you'd swear he was the owner of Wrexham AFC from what he'd say during his time as porter at Wrexham Maelor. Full of self importance and one of the leaks, as his former colleagues can attest.

It's where the rumour regarding the purchase of the Racecourse came from, of course it was the next best thing a long term lease.

Rob 6th February 2020 18.49:30

Re: Email and letters to the Board
 
A wall of text is never good to digest.

Have I read it right you are claiming that unique details revealed to a director and a limited circle ended up being referenced by the fake user / troll attack style twitter account?

-luke 6th February 2020 19.08:33

Re: Email and letters to the Board
 
[QUOTE=Rob;2341869]A wall of text is never good to digest.

Have I read it right you are claiming that unique details revealed to a director and a limited circle ended up being referenced by the fake user / troll attack style twitter account?[/QUOTE]

I am now able to reveal the true culprit, it's........ Rebekah Vardy's account...

Cenotaff 6th February 2020 19.14:15

Re: Email and letters to the Board
 
Oh look, the fake Neil Cooke is involved yet again and also only knows info that someone in contact with the board would know.

Also, ffs, Pete Jones, you can be behind fan ownership and still want/encourage outside investment (whatever that may entail). Quite clearly more obsessed about 100% ownership and control than the potential to move the stagnating/regressing club, forward.


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