April Dons Trust Board meeting summary

The Dons Trust Board (DTB) held its monthly meeting at The Cherry Red Records Stadium on Monday, April 20. Ahead of publication of the redacted minutes, this article summarises the main points that were discussed.

The first part of the meeting was an update by Dan Norris, the club’s lawyer, on the potential sale of Kingsmeadow as part of our wider ambition to move to a new stadium in Merton. Trust members will appreciate that, for commercial and confidentiality reasons, it is not possible to cover much of the detail of Dan’s update and the subsequent Board discussion. However, it did include a detailed discussion about the impact of the ‘Restricted Actions’ rules that require any potential sale of Kingsmeadow to be approved by the Dons Trust membership. The Board will, of course, communicate further with members as soon as is practicable.

As usual, AFC Wimbledon Chief Executive Erik Samuelson attended the meeting to give his Football Club Board update. This included recent Football League discussions about the possible inclusion of Premier League club Under-21 teams in the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy from next season, various player contractual updates, and ongoing financial support for the Ladies and Girls teams next season (£15,000 from the Trust). The Board formally congratulated AFC Wimbledon Ladies for winning the Surrey Women’s Cup, and Mark Robinson who has recently been awarded his UEFA ‘A’ coaching badge.

The Board welcomed the feedback on the new stadium from members at the recent Dons Trust Special General Meeting. It was agreed that the Trust would aim to engage more fans by repeating the exercise. As it would not be practicable to do this before the Cheltenham game, the Board will look to identify a venue in Wimbledon for this.

There was a further discussion regarding the London Living Wage (LLW) based on initial potential cost data gathered by Erik. It was agreed that additional data was needed before the true impact of implementing the LLW could be fully understood, with Erik carrying out further analysis for the May meeting.

Other business included:

  • A brief summary by Zoe Linkson on the work of the DCMS supporters’ working party, on which she is representing the Dons Trust. The group’s main focus is to identify routes to making fan ownership easier, and an interim report had been submitted to the Minister of Sport at the end of March. The next meeting is scheduled for June.
  • Clarification of the funding of the volunteers’ away day. Erik confirmed that Cherry Red Records provided generous sponsorship, supplemented by club funds.

The meeting concluded at 10.30pm.

In attendance from the DTB were: Matt Breach, Mark Davis, Nigel Higgs, Zoe Linkson, Jane Lonsdale, Sean McLaughlin and Kris Stewart.