Most weeks we get emails from members and non-members, asking questions about the Supporters Trust. The Trust board have put together 10 of the most commonly asked questions and answers.
Q: Why should I join the Trust?
A: As possibly a non, or minor shareholder, by joining a collective you become part of an organisation who through collective ownership can work towards owning a significant and decision making shareholding in your football club.
Q: Aren’t you just like a Supporters Club?
A: Supporters Trust is a distinct entity from a Supporters Club and has many differences. A Supporters Trust is a formally constituted body that aims to take part ownership in a club by pulling its members assets (shares) together so that they are corporately owned. An IPS ensures limited liability for its members and office bearers within a democratic, not-for-profit organization. The main goal of a Supporters Trust is to represent fans and to strengthen links between club and community To this end the Trust will look to become active in all areas of football in the local area including the promotion of youth development. Unlike a public or private limited company (e.g. Berwick Rangers F.C.) the Trust’s status will allow it to apply for grants from a variety of sources to assist with funding for new community facilities such as all-weather pitches and training equipment.
Q: How do I join?
A: Its easy, you can fill in the online joining form on our website, or if you prefer you can write to us at our address also on the website and we’ll be in touch with you.
Q: What will it cost me?
A: We only stipulate £2 a month which can be done quite simply by filling in the standing order form, then we do the rest. However many members choose to pay more, up to a maximum of £10 a month.
Q: When I join the Trust, what do I get for my money?
A: What you will receive: A membership pack – containing your own certificate, members card, pin badge, car sticker and fixture guide. You will also receive a membership card which will entitle you to take advantage of members’ benefits. And from time to time we will send you out a present – this year every Trust member received a free colour calendar.
Q: I don’t live in Berwick, how will I hear what your doing with my money?
A: We send you a full colour 16 page newsletter twice a year and if your on email you’ll get a e-communication keeping you completely up to date with all the Trust is doing. Additionally as a member you are welcome to attend any of the boards monthly meetings, the time and venue are posted on our website.
Q: As a Berwick Rangers supporter thinking of joining, how does the Trust help the Football Club?
A: In many ways, for example, in recent times helping finance things like a new boiler at the ground. Since our formation in 2004 we have given over £50,000 to the Football Club in various forms.
Q: I don’t have any shares in the Football Club, will I get an equal say in what goes on within the Trust?
A: You certainly will, £1 will be taken from your first months payment to purchase for you, one share, which is exactly the same as every other Trust member. Unlike the Football Club everyone within the Trust has an equal say in what goes on.
Q: Who watches what you do, are you regulated in any way?
A: Thankfully we are, the Supporters Direct movement as a whole is regulated by Government legislation. There are rules and regulations that we as an individual Trust are required to adhere to.
Q: If I think I have something to offer can I get onto the Trust Board?
A: Yes, there are normally vacancies at any time on the Board, and enthusiastic members with something to offer are always welcome.
If you have any further questions, please email us.
Alternatively you can write to us – Berwick Rangers Supporters Trust c/o 10 Golden Squard, Berwick-upon-Tweed, Northumberland, TD15 1BS