Dear members and supporters,
I hope you have all had an enjoyable Easter and are keeping safe and well.
It’s been a few weeks since my last update and, as the board are currently meeting via conference link fortnightly, I thought it would be timely to give you a flavour of one or two developments in these unique times.
Firstly I can confirm that that the FA Council have ratified the decision to conclude the 2019-20 season across Steps 3-7 of the National League System, tiers 3 to 7 of the women’s football pyramid and the wider grassroots game. This was, in my opinion and many others at the club, the right decision in the unprecedented circumstances.
When will something that looks like a 2020-21 season begin? I think it’s fair to say that at the time of writing nobody knows. Who will we be playing and in what competitions? Again, who knows. There are more important things in life right now. Having said that, I would suspect that there will be continuing updates from the Isthmian League over the coming weeks that should give us more clarity. I think it might be a good default position to expect the unexpected! Much, of course, will depend on what shape clubs in the non-league game are in by the end of the COVID-19 lockdown.
The QEII Stadium remains closed to the public until further notice, with no matches or social functions, including the previously advertised May outdoor cinema events. There has been some good news in recent days in as much as the club’s application for COVID-19 relief grant funding has been approved. The receipt of this grant has been a huge positive in terms of being able to balance the books and keep the club ticking over during its mothballing.
Our Finance Director Geoff Lee, and other members of the board have been scrutinising our budget and, due in substantial part to a healthy number of kind donations from members and other supporters, our financial situation has improved although it will continue to be exceptionally tight. Thank you to everyone who has renewed their memberships, purchased season tickets and made donations, your generosity has made a huge difference to our club. The board will remain agile throughout the next few weeks to take decisions as necessary to maintain our stability.
The Academy partnership with EDSV due to start in September is still on course, even if there may need to be some adjustments in the way it is administered – for example there could be some of the educational modules delivered remotely. A number of excellent players have already been recruited and we’re confident that there will be some excellent talent coming through the scheme in the next couple of years.
Directors will be approaching our current sponsors to check on their health, financial and otherwise. There is some basic work being undertaken on the playing surface at the Stadium, and around the ground itself. Work is proceeding on making sure that we retain our FA Charter Club status, that our affiliations remain as they were for 2019-20, and that we enter the competitions that we are anticipating competing in at some point during 2020-21.
Andy Leese has indicated in his recent online communication piece that he has spoken to the vast majority of the squad – and I have also been in discussions with some – and they have all indicated that they fully appreciate that the situation we find ourselves in is no different to any other club at our level. Everyone’s health is the overriding factor that trumps everything but, for the time being at least, pretty much all have indicated a commitment to remain at the Town, which is great news.
We’ve recently completed our snapshot supporters survey, which focused primarily on the way the club communicates with its supporters and on the matchday experience. There was a healthy response to this, our first such approach to you for three years. It is heartening to hear that 94% of respondents felt that they are kept in touch with club news as much as can reasonably be expected. This response was up by 8% on last time. It is also interesting to hear that social media has overtaken the club website significantly as the primary source of news for members and supporters. On the matchday experience, 89% of you have indicated that it is as good as can be reasonably expected, which is down by 3% on last time.
In both categories, there have been some very positive and interesting ideas for improvements. The Board will be considering these in the coming few weeks and will get back to members and supporters with some further detail on the survey responses themselves and an action plan based on recommendations which is in line with anticipated resources available. Congratulations to Society member David Pinnington, who was our randomly selected survey participant prize winner this time round – well done David!
Thanks once again to all of your for your continued support and understanding, and an additional sincere thank you to those of you who are continuing to perform background tasks to keep the club’s heartbeat going while it remains inactive as far as matches and other events go.
If you have any questions on Enfield Town FC matters, please address them to: firstname.lastname@example.org
If you would like to donate to help the club through these exceptionally difficult times, you can either make a BACS transfer to:
ETFC Ltd, Barclays Bank, Sort Code 20-45-45, Account Number 43222942. Please mark any transfer with your name and the word ‘donation’.
Finally, a reminder that memberships and season tickets are already available; please see the previous announcement about this: https://etfc.london/calling-all-town-supporters
Take care everyone, and I’ll be in touch as soon as there are any further updates. In the meantime please do check out our regular social media highlights of games gone by and jog your memories!