The Chairman’s Musings

The Chairs programme notes of both wit and wisdom, from the pen of  John Burgess.

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CHESTERFIELD NOTES

Well here we are again at the start of another season full of anticipation at the exciting football ahead! It doesn’t seem that long since we were all at Torquay and Tranmere cheering on The Fleet – two places we won’t be visiting this season.

The Fleet Supporters’ Trust is now fully established in The Old Boardroom and office. Members can enjoy a drink in the Members only bar after having booked their away travel in the office next door. The Board has decided this year that it is necessary to be more precise in the numbers needed to warrant a second coach to away games. This has become necessary to minimise the financial shortfall on the cost of away travel.

To help manage this it would be much appreciated if you book your away travel as early as possible and make payment at the time of booking. The coach to Leyton Orient is already full and a minimum of a further ten bookings are needed to make a second coach viable. I’m sure that will be achieved today.

I would like to remind all Fleet Trust Members that their membership becomes due for renewal today so please ensure you renew as soon as possible in order that you can enjoy the discounted away travel price.

I know the Manager and players much appreciate the numbers of fans at away games so, hopefully, we can travel in even greater numbers this season.

By joining the Fleet Supporters’ Trust you are not only helping to support the Club but can save yourself up to £115 on away travel over the season – what a great return on your money! Membership also entitles you to priority ticket purchase for all ticket games. You can join and pay online or at the Trust office on matchdays.

Following our successful weekend trip to Torquay last season, many of you have been asking if there is to be a similar trip this season. I have identified the game v Harrogate on Saturday 16th February 2019 as a potential venue. The format would be similar to last season – leaving Ebbsfleet on Friday morning and returning from Harrogate on Sunday morning. Please contact me on 07951 610878 or email johnburgessesq@yahoo.co.uk if you are interested in making this trip. If there is sufficient demand I will make the necessary arrangements. The pre-season games have been a success so let’s hope that can be carried over into the start of the season proper as we meet Chesterfield in their first game in The National League.

On a personal note, I would like to say how great it is to have Dave ARCHER back at The Fleet; we enjoy a fantastic working relationship and I look forward to taking that further again this season.

So come on Fleet fans let’s cheer the team on today for a victory to start the season! UP THE FLEET!

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SUTTON NOTES

Two away trips completed but so different; one a somewhat indifferent welcome, the other a heartfelt and genuine welcome – such is the lot of football fans. I know which creates a better atmosphere between both sets of supporters. I’ll leave you to decide which you prefer.

A hard earned, but deserved point on Tuesday was followed by three points as a reward for those Fleet Fans who made the long trip to Hartlepool. A second visit was made to The Almighty Cod for post-match fish and chips which were as good as the first visit last season.

The Hartlepool Trust invited all Fleet fans into their Corner Flag Clubroom where their Chairman thanked all those fans who had chipped into the collection for Hartlepool last season at our home game v Warrington. The money donated was much appreciated by them and their generous expression of thanks was gratefully received. The PA announcement which followed was again well received as shown by the generous applause from the home supporters. It was pleasing to note how much the efforts of all who contributed meant to a Club who found themselves in a position which many of us have experienced. Happily, both Clubs are now on a sound footing for which all supporters are most thankful. I did contact them after the game to say sorry for nicking the three points!

At the invitation of The Club, I recently attended the unveiling of a statue of HM Queen Elizabeth to which Dr. Al.Humaidi had contributed. I really enjoyed the occasion in the company of Dave ARCHER after his return to the Club. If you are down by the river in Gravesend make sure to have a look at a very imposing statue.

I would like to encourage all Fleet Supporters’ Trust members to make use of our newly acquired Clubroom in The Old Boardroom next to the away travel booking office. As the saying goes ‘use it or lose it’. It is a very pleasant place for a drink and a chat either before or after booking your away travel.

Bookings are being taken for Barnet and Eastleigh and the numbers are good so we may need a second coach for Barnet. Don’t delay if you intend going to either game as we can then decide if a second coach is financially viable.

The Trust was asked about scarves in the blue away colours and I can confirm the Club are intending to make these available. 5XL shirts have been ordered so if you want one make a reservation at the Club Shop.

Speaking of the shop the Trust have been in conversation about the poor access on match days and this will hopefully be resolved in the near future.

I think that’s enough from me so let’s get behind the team and cheer them on to victory over Sutton tonight.  UP THE FLEET!

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ALDERSHOT NOTES

Hello again, a fantastic following of 321 Ebbsfleet supporters travelled to Barnet on Saturday and witnessed a marvellous 3-0 victory for The Fleet. The vocal support was just a joy to hear. This was achieved despite the appalling lack of food and hot drinks at the ground. Following a Board Meeting on Tuesday it was agreed to make The Chairman of Barnet F.C. aware of inadequate provision made for visiting fans on Saturday. A letter will be sent to him.

Fleet Supporters’ Trust members who have yet to renew their membership, which was due from 4th August 2018, should do so as soon as possible. Existing Members not in possession of a membership card can obtain a replacement at The Fleet Supporters’ Trust Office on match days. It is important that you have the card in your possession as it will, in the future, be a requirement that it is produced when booking away travel in order to enjoy the £5 discount on travel costs. The date of this requirement will be published on the website and will be announced in my programme notes. The moral is don’t lose your card it will save you money!

There are two coaches travelling to Eastleigh on Bank Holiday Monday so book today if you want to make that trip. Bookings can also be made for the Tuesday evening game to Dover on 4/9/18.

The Fleet Supporters’ Trust will again be the match sponsors for the game v AFC Fylde on 1st September. Gold Members who weren’t able to attend the Chesterfield game will be offered first refusal for places and any available after that will be the subject of a draw amongst interested Standard members. Any Standard member wishing to take part in the draw should contact me on 07951 610878 or email johnburgessesq@yahoo.co.uk.

Considerable interest has been forthcoming for the proposed weekend trip to Harrogate from 15/2/2109 to 17/2/2019 but there is always room for more – if this is of interest to you please contact me as above. Once I have a clearer idea of the likely cost this will be made known but I anticipate it being between £150 -£190 per head for the weekend including travel. I am trying to source a suitable hotel in the centre of Harrogate which is a very pleasant town.

Let’s hope today’s game is a less stressful one than our last one against Aldershot – Deano’s penalty will stay with me forever! So come on let’s hear the Ebbsfleet roar and cheer The Fleet to another three points.

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FYLDE NOTES

What a contrast in our Bank Holiday games.  Saturday saw a comfortable win over Aldershot when the Fleet converted chances into goals for a deserved three points.

The trip to Eastleigh by over 200 supporters on Monday saw a host of chances not converted into goals against an Eastleigh team reduced to ten men for much of the game. However, one was taken by the evergreen Danny Kedwell which proved enough for another three points. I’m not sure my blood pressure will stand too many matches like that though! A haul of six points was a just reward for the efforts of the team.

It was pleasing to note that the facilities for away fans were excellent at Eastleigh – a pleasant change from recent games. A letter has been sent to Barnet to make the views of Supporters known to them about the poor facilities there, as yet no response has been forthcoming.

Fleet Supporters’ Trust members who have yet to renew their membership for this season should do so as soon as possible. As from the bookings for Wrexham, it will be necessary to produce your membership card in order to enjoy the £5 discount on away travel. If you have lost your card replacements can be obtained at the office next to The Old Boardroom. On the subject of membership if you have changed your address or email please ensure that the new details are sent to the Membership Secretary in order that our database can be updated – if this is not done you may miss out.

The Fleet Supporters’ Trust is now sponsoring Jonathan MILES and is match sponsor for today’s game. Those Members who were successful in the draw for places will have a most enjoyable time in the hospitality suite. If you were unsuccessful in the draw your name will automatically be entered in the draw for the next occasion when The Fleet Supporters’ Trust take up a sponsorship.

In conjunction with the Club, it has been agreed that The Fleet Supporters’ Trust will take part in a ‘litter pick’ around the outside of the ground so keep an eye out for the date to be announced. Bacon rolls will be provided!

Hopefully, details of costs for the trip to Harrogate in February 2019 will be finalised in the next couple of weeks and will be published. Once this has been done a deposit will be required to confirm your booking.

Well, that’s enough from me, I’m off to Devon for a holiday and have handed the baton to Kevin and Kevin for the Gateshead notes but will be back for the game. UP THE FLEET!

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GATESHEAD NOTES

Welcome to this (late) afternoon fixture against Gateshead. As John mentioned in the AFC Fylde Fleet Review, due to a taking a well-deserved break, he has not been able to compile notes for today’s game. So it is time to bring on the subs from the bench (or in my case a comfy chair) to give an update on Fleet Supporters’ Trust activities.

Firstly, away travel with Redwing has, like last season, been working successfully. Those wishing to travel to Wrexham on the 15th September, please see Steve today in the Trust office under the old stand to make a booking. Steve will also commence taking bookings for the Dagenham & Redbridge game on the 29th September. As the points earned from games played so far this season have been greater from the away fixtures, it makes sense to travel to these matches whenever possible. I imagine that a fish and chip shop stop will be involved on the return journey from Wrexham.

Secondly, if any existing Trust members have yet to renew their membership for the 2018/19 season then please do so now. Any supporter travelling by coach with the Trust will, from the Wrexham trip and matches thereafter, need to produce an up-to-date membership card to be able to claim the discount which membership provides. New members are also most welcome to join.  As at the date of the most recent Trust Board meeting held on the 21st August, the number of Trust members (including all categories) stood at 331.

It has been suggested that a Q&A session should take place at which Daryl McMahon and Dave Archer would be present to answer questions about the Team and the Club. This will be likely to take place on a Thursday evening. Further details about the date, time and format of the evening will be made known as soon as the outline plan has been confirmed. Enjoy the game.

Kevin Johncock (Society Secretary).

As we head into September, yet another busy fixture month as August was, for us, a brace of games have passed, one, a loss at home, thanks mostly to the shooting power of Danny Rowe, AFC Fylde went away from the Kuflink with a 3-1 win, and then last Tuesday, we moved on to Crabble, and our “local” derby with Dover Athletic. Scores level at the break, that’s how it stayed, but the match saw Darren McQueen’s first goal of this campaign. The last time we met today’s opponents, was on a very cold, rainy night in Gateshead, and we came off as 5-2 winners, quite late on in the season, and so, with the Heed only behind us on goal difference. this afternoon’s game in front of the BT Sport cameras will provide another testy 90 minutes for our lads, so let’s get behind them all and cheer them to another victory today.

Finally, a special thanks to all Fleet Trust members for your continued support of the Trust! …………………..Up the Fleet!

Kevin Spencer. Webmaster.

HAVANT & WATERLOOVILLE NOTES

Hello again, firstly may I thank the two Kevins’ who kindly wrote the notes for the Gateshead game as I was on holiday in Devon. Chrissie and I enjoyed a very relaxing time and returned ready for the game against Gateshead hoping for a home win; but it wasn’t to be thanks to an unfortunate own goal and not taking the chances created. It was then on to Wrexham hoping for an improved performance.

The great away support continued with two coaches taking dedicated Fleet supporters in addition to those who make their own travel arrangements. This is no mean feat involving a 426 mile round trip.

Coach 2 had a good number of younger supporters on board and we were treated to a full practice of their songs and chants on the journey. At the ground, they were joined by the other regular Plough Enders and despite the early setbacks maintained their vocal support until the fourth goal in a splendid display of belief and support.

After the half time break, Kedders’ early goal gave us all a ray of hope and the singing and chanting resumed, but it proved a false dawn and the game ended with a well-deserved victory for Wrexham and the need for much reflection on a Fleet performance which was ponderous and lacking invention or penetration.

The disappointment of losing was, however, tempered by the great fish and chips provided by The Gwersylt Fish bar. On coach 2 the optimism of youth was exemplified by more singing and chanting on the homeward journey. We must all ‘believe’ and trust that this blip will be overcome, hopefully with a victory and three points today.

The Fleet Supporters’ Trust are match ball sponsors today and hopefully those Members who were successful in the draw for places will have a most enjoyable time. If you were unsuccessful this time your name will automatically go into the next draw.

The arrangements for the weekend in Harrogate in February are almost complete and will be published in the next couple of weeks.

I am pleased to be able to tell Fleet Supporters’ Trust Members that wi-fi is now up and running in the Members Bar and the internet is accessible via the password which is available in the Bar. Thanks to EUFC for helping with this and to Kevin Spencer, our IT guru for setting it up. Please feel free to make use of it and enjoy a drink in the bar. It is hoped that in the near future a card reader facility will be operating in the Away Booking Office enabling payment for travel to be made by way of card payment.

That’s enough from me so let’s show that we all ‘believe’ and get behind the team to drive them on to victory. As a well known banner says ‘COME ON EBBSFLEET YOU CAN DO IT’

BROMLEY NOTES

Well the first wet day of this season saw The Fleet gain a point from the game against Havant and Waterlooville. Let’s hope this is the start of an upward trend in performance and points as we move into the second third of the season. We must take the positives and get behind the team and the Club as they strive to improve our points total. Those Members who enjoyed the hospitality in the Hospitality Suite on Saturday have told me they had a most enjoyable time.

Everyone who attended the showings of ‘Secret Spitfire’ on Thursday were treated to a most interesting and fascinating film; thanks to Karl HOWMAN for putting this together and to EUFC for use of the facilities. Also thanks to Tanya and her team for the excellent afternoon cream tea and evening pie and mash.

The details for the weekend trip to Harrogate in February are now on our website but for those who don’t have access to the internet the details are: the trip will leave EUFC at 10am on Friday 15th February returning on Sunday 17th February. The venue is Premier Inn in Harrogate town centre. The cost per double or family room will be £188 for two night’s bed and breakfast. Travel will be £40 for Fleet Supporters’ Trust Members and their partners, for non-members it will be £45. A deposit of £40 per person will be required to confirm a booking together with the names of all room occupants. The balance will be payable in full by 20th January 2019. Stage payments can be made if required, please ask if you wish to do this. A total of twenty five rooms have been reserved. When these rooms are taken no more bookings will be accepted. Bookings will be taken on a first come first served basis even if you have already expressed an interest in making this trip. Bookings can be only be made in person at the Fleet Supporters’ Trust office next to The Old Boardroom. As the deposit once paid to Premier Inn is non-refundable it is advised that appropriate cancellation insurance be obtained.

Bookings for away travel to Dagenham and Redbridge and Solihull Moors are now being taken and can be made in the Away Travel Office at tonight’s game.

Two stalwart Fleet fans are, at present, not enjoying the best of health. Mike MARTIN has undergone surgery and Harry HOUCKHAM was taken ill at the game on Saturday. At the time of writing both are still in hospital. On behalf of Fleet Supporters’ Trust members and all Fleet Supporters I wish them a speedy returned to good health.

I have no doubt that three points gained tonight would be a good tonic to them both so let’s get behind the Team and cheer them to that elusive home win. UP THE FLEET!


HARROGATE NOTES

A good return to winning ways was just reward for those fans who made the short trip to Dagenham on Saturday. Those who chose not to travel to Essex missed the chance to witness an irrepressible debut by loanee, Reise ALLASSANI. It was worth the admission fee just to see him run the Dagenham defenders ragged. As I write I learn that The Fleet have been successful in the penalty shoot out to defeat a plucky Sevenoaks side in the Kent Senior Cup. Congratulations to all involved.

At Monday’s Board Meeting it was agreed that any Member who had not renewed their subscription by 31st October would not be entitled to enjoy the benefits of Fleet Supporters’ Trust membership. In order to be eligible for those benefits it will, in future, be necessary to produce a current, stamped membership card. If you aren’t sure if you are one of those outstanding you can find out by visiting the Away Travel Office near The Old Boardroom. Any membership not renewed by 31st October will become null and void.

Details of the weekend trip to Harrogate in February 2019 are on the website and can also be obtained from the Fleet Supporters’ Trust Office where bookings can be made by paying a deposit of £40 per person. It was agreed at the Board Meeting that a day coach to the Harrogate fixture on 16th February 2019 would be run subject to sufficient demand.

Bookings for away travel to Solihull Moors and Salford City are being taken; once the result of the FA Cup draw is known details of away travel, if needed, will be put on the Fleet Supporters’ Trust website.

The 50/50 draw was not claimed at the last home game – No 15135 – likewise the Golden goal – 15 minutes – if you have either of those tickets claim your winnings at the Fleet Supporters’ Trust office.

Thanks to Kevin SPENCER the wifi and internet is performing well in The Old Boardroom. It is hoped to have a card reader facility available soon enabling payment for away travel and renewal of subscriptions to be made by card.

The Walking Football Section, which is supported by The Fleet Supporters’ Trust have decided to field two teams this season. They would welcome new members and if there are any interested referees out there contact Chris JUDGE or Steve EAST. Their first game is to be played at Goals, Dartford on 12th October.

It is approaching the time for the Annual General Meeting of the Fleet Supporters’ Trust so I am asking for anyone interested in joining the Board to contact me or any Board Member. The present Members have all performed stalwart service over a number of years and new recruits would help with the ever-increasing workload.

I think that’s enough from me so let’s get behind the Fleet in what will be a stiff test against a high flying Harrogate.  COME ON EBBSFLEET YOU CAN DO IT!

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MAIDSTONE NOTES

I write these notes with the news of the awful helicopter crash at Leicester becoming known, I am sure the thoughts of all football fans are with those involved. This news puts the turbulent times at our club into perspective.

On Saturday the players and staff put any problems off the pitch to one side and delivered a spirited and united performance on the pitch much to the joy of those devoted Fleet fans who made the journey to Manchester. This helped to dispel any fears they would be affected by the social media frenzy as they gained a well- deserved draw against a skilful Salford City side.

It was pleasing that, despite previous incidents at the ground, we were made welcome and treated well. This continued after the game with the now traditional fish and chips being declared some of the best ever. Thanks to Dan and his delightful ladies at Chips@No8 for that.

Our last home game saw a well-deserved 4-0 win over Worthing who put up a very creditable performance. Our good wishes to them for a successful season in their efforts to gain promotion. This win was rewarded by another home tie against Cheltenham Town. Like most supporters I almost missed this as our number came out of the draw very early – not right at the end as is usually the case!

Supporters intending to enjoy the weekend stay in Harrogate are reminded that to confirm their room the deposit of £40 per head is payable before the 30th November 2018. Payment can be made at The Fleet Supporters’ Trust office next to The Old Boardroom. While there pop next door for a drink and a chat in the Members only bar.

Today one of our fans is celebrating his 60th birthday – so we join with Kim and her family wishing Kevin BAKER a happy birthday.

Congratulations to Sam and Ellie MAGRI on the birth of their son, Nico Arthur. Mother and baby are doing well.

On Thursday I had the honour to represent the Fleet Supporters’ Trust at the funeral of one of our longest serving Members, Bill DAVIS. Bill was a Fleet fan from the age of 9 and had attended games first at Central Avenue then from 1946 at Stonebridge Road. He was a regular and popular member of ‘The halfway liners’ attending regularly until ill health prevented him being at games. However, he always kept an eye on all things ‘Fleet’. Our condolences to Kath and all the family.

Whatever perceived off field difficulties there might be all Fleet supporters MUST stay united behind the players and staff – so let’s all show our passion for this wonderful football club and get behind the team for this evening’s local derby. UP THE FLEET!

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BARROW NOTES

The first chilly night of the season saw a decent crowd of 2000 plus at The Kuflink Stadium to see Fleet score a goal at home and go in front against Maidstone but then concede rather softly from a corner to end up with a share of the points. The last two games have seen good performances by the players in which they have gone in front and could have resulted in wins with a bit of good luck. Both home and away support has been excellent with the Plough End choir in great voice on Tuesday.

The continued high level of support, despite the unsettled background, demonstrates the true nature of Fleet supporters and is, I know, much appreciated by the players. We must all stick together and trust that those charged with resolving any difficulties off the pitch do their job while we fans concentrate on supporting the players on the pitch. We MUST BELIEVE!

On behalf of all supporters I have requested a meeting with Dr. Al HUMAIDI to ask for assurance and clarity that any difficulties are being resolved.

A date for your diary if you are a Fleet Supporters’ Trust member is Wednesday 5th. December 2018 for the Annual General Meeting in the hospitality suite at the Kuflink Stadium. Doors open at 7.30pm for an 8pm start. A pay bar and light buffet will be available.

Production of a current membership card is required to gain admission so make sure it is to hand. If you haven’t got a card come to the Fleet Supporters’ Trust office where you can obtain a replacement card. There are a number of cards awaiting collection – if you think one is yours come and collect it.

The Fleet Members bar is next door so pop in and enjoy a drink and a chat – I know it’s a bit of a walk but it will keep you fit!

It would be most helpful if some Members would be prepared to join the Trust Board; it is a few years since our last new member joined the Board. Her work has helped enormously but there is always room for more people to help spread the load. If you want to know more please feel free to speak to me or any Board member – there’s no obligation by having a chat.

Bookings for away travel to Boreham Wood and Maidenhead can be made at the Trust office.

Anyone who intends to stay in Harrogate for the weekend in February 2019 MUST pay the £40 per head deposit by the end of November – if you told me you were interested you still need to pay the deposit in order to confirm the room. Deposits can be paid at the Trust office.

A number of those guests visiting the hospitality suite on Tuesday had not been before but all enjoyed the experience and said they will return for more – the winning ticket for golden goal and 50/50 were both in the hospitality suite so that may have helped!

That’s enough from me so let’s concentrate on getting behind the team and cheer them on to that elusive home win and three valuable points.

UP THE FLEET!

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HALIFAX TOWN NOTES

November has been a turbulent month for The Fleet with many off-field changes. On behalf of all Fleet supporters I wish Garry HILL and Ian HENDON all the best as they begin their respective roles at EUFC, congratulations to Dave ARCHER on his appointment as Managing Director.

Victories have proved elusive despite some good performances by the players but converting chances into goals is proving difficult at the moment. Hopefully this barren spell will be broken and Fleet fans will be celebrating as the goals are scored.

In spite of all the difficulties being experienced at the moment, the supporters remain committed to the Club and the players and we must all remain united to help them through these difficult times.

The trip to Cheltenham on Tuesday wasn’t rewarded by the victory we all hoped for but the performance of the team was, depending on which report you believe, either ‘limp’ or ‘battling’. As one of the supporters who was there the display certainly wasn’t one I would describe as ‘limp’ and the scoreline wasn’t a true reflection of the game. The Fleet fans made their voices heard and were behind the team throughout. Those who travelled on the supporters coach enjoyed probably the best fish and chips of the season so far which helped to ease the pain of defeat.

Thanks to the sterling efforts of Kevin SPENCER, BT sport is now available in the Fleet Supporters’ Trust members bar in the Old Boardroom so members should come along and enjoy a drink and watch the footie – I know it’s a bit of a walk but it will help you keep fit!

Fleet Supporters’ Trust members are reminded that the Annual General Meeting is being held in the Hospitality suite in The Kuflink stadium on Wednesday 5th December 2018; doors open at 7.30pm for an 8pm start. Light refreshments will be provided. Members should note that production of a current membership card is required to gain admission. If you aren’t in possession of a membership card or if you don’t know if your membership is up to date call at the FST office next to the Old Boardroom to check.

As two of the present Board have indicated they wish to stand down with effect from the AGM I would ask anyone willing to give of their time to consider joining the Board. Please speak to me or any Board member if you are interested.

Anyone wanting to go on the weekend trip to Harrogate in February 2019 needs to pay the £40 per head deposit by the end of November. At the present moment there are only three rooms available – so don’t delay if you want one.

Bookings are being taken for away travel to Maidenhead on Tuesday 27th November – this coach departs at 1600 NOT 1630 as stated on the away travel cards – and Aldershot on 1st December 2018 departing at 12 noon.

That’s probably enough from me so let’s all get behind the team today and cheer them on as they score that elusive goal! UP THE FLEET!

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BARNET NOTES

Well, there has been a distinct change recently as performances have improved since Garry HILLS and Ian HENDON took over. After decent performances in the FA Cup games followed by a creditable draw at Boreham Wood the home game against FC Halifax saw a four goal victory to warm the home supporters.

The trip to Aldershot saw the team achieve their first double of the season and it was obvious that the response from the players has been fantastic and team spirit is excellent. That this has been achieved despite all the off field distractions is a credit to all concerned – long may it continue.

I’m sure like most Fleet fans I was sorry to see Kenny CLARK leave the Club – he has been a firm favourite over quite a few years but felt it was the right move for him. I wish him all the best for the future and will miss my chats with his dad!

The only sad aspect recently has been the continued poor behaviour of a small section of fans at both Boreham Wood and Aldershot with regard to despicable chanting. It was pleasing, however, to speak to a Police Officer after the Aldershot game and be told they had ejected a number of Aldershot fans and identified others. It is a sad fact that this type of behaviour is still present both in society and in football – as evidenced by the scenes at The Emirates on Sunday.  There is no place for this type of behaviour anywhere.

The Harrogate weekend has three rooms still available so if you wish to join the trip a deposit of £40 per person needs to be paid as soon as possible so contact me if you are interested.

Bookings can now be made for the away trips to AFC Fylde on 22.12.18 and Braintree on 1.1.19 – see Steve in the Fleet Supporters’ Trust office to book.

The Fleet Supporters’ Trust are match sponsors for the Boxing Day game v Braintree and those Members who were successful in the draw for places will be notified. They can look forward to a great time in the hospitality suite.

The Annual General Meeting of The Fleet Supporters’ Trust took place on Wednesday 5th December 2018. Those Members present put forward some points which the Board will pursue around communication, away travel and a possible Q and A session. Two new Members were elected to the Fleet Supporters’ Trust Board – Josh SAUNDERS and Tracy DOWN. Both were elected unanimously and were welcomed to The Board. All present enjoyed an excellent buffet presented by Tanya and her staff.

Fleet Supporters’ Trust members are reminded that BT Sport is now up and running in the Old Boardroom so come round to the old stand and enjoy watching footie on the TV with a quiet drink before the game, at half time and afterwards.

Today’s game presents another opportunity to do a double so let’s get right behind the players and cheer them on to another home victory. UP THE FLEET!

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BRAINTREE NOTES

 

As I am writing these notes before the away trip to AFC Fylde it’s a bit like looking into the future but without a crystal ball!  The weather for the FA Trophy game was appalling and the result didn’t do anything to warm the Fleet fans who endured the awful weather. I wasn’t able to be at the game as I was on Father Christmas duty but I have it on good authority that the Plough End choir gave a splendid rendition of ‘Last Christmas’!

The Fleet Supporters’ Trust are match sponsors for today’s game and I am sure those members who were successful in the draw will have a most enjoyable time.

Recent events in The Champions League and Premier League are evidence that unpleasant and unlawful behaviour is still present in football. Unfortunately, as we are all too aware, such behaviour is not confined to that level but occurs at Non-League level and even in Sunday League games. Our own Nathan ASHMORE has taken a stand on this and his recent interview should be compulsory reading for all supporters.

The authorities must address this as it not acceptable for anyone to go about their job having to be subject to abuse. All right minded supporters must take responsibility for helping to rid the game of this by ensuring those in authority are made aware when it happens in order they can take action and hopefully eradicate it from football. It is a sad indictment of Society that anyone has to be subject of abuse because of their race, colour or creed. Such abuse has no place in Society or Football.

The trip to AFC Fylde saw the fish and chips once more delivered to the coach at the ground – thank you Dawson’s chippy.

Bookings can be made at the Fleet Supporters’ Trust office for the away games at Braintree on 1/1/19 departing at 1200 and Chesterfield on 5/1/19 departing at 0900.

The Fleet Supporters’ Trust members bar will be open as usual with BT Sport now up and running so do take the time to pop in and enjoy the facilities.

I hope you all had a very Merry Christmas and that Santa was kind to you all and are in fine voice for today’s game – so let’s get behind The Fleet as they strive for three more points today – UP THE FLEET!

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EASTLEIGH NOTES

Once again I am writing these notes before Christmas – such are the demands of the Printers! The games are coming thick and fast over Christmas and New Year with 3 games in seven days. Hopefully results will have gone our way and we can end the year on a high with three more points today.

A couple of weeks ago myself, David Rutnam, Sharon Stockley and Katie Burgess spoke to a journalist who has produced an article which was, I think, a positive reflection on Ebbsfleet. Should you wish to read it go to www.dreamteamfc.com.

Today is the last call for anyone wishing to join the weekend trip to Harrogate in February 2019 as I have to confirm room numbers on 2.1.2019. There are four rooms available as of the time of writing. If you are interested contact me as soon as possible.

Bookings can be made at the Fleet Supporters’ Trust office for the away trips to Braintree on 1.1.2019 departing at 1200, Chesterfield on 5.1.2019 departing at 0900 and Sutton on 26.1.2019 departing at 1230.

A number of Fleet Supporters’ Trust members have asked me if it is possible to have some form of end of season function. I shall put this to the Board at our next meeting in January so it would be useful if expressions of interest could be made to any Board member before the 20th January 2019.

Once again the Fleet Supporters’ Trust members bar will be open so pop in and enjoy the company and watch the footie on BT Sport.

This year has been a bit of a roller coaster for supporters and the Club alike but, as I have said before, the one constant throughout has been the amazing support from all Fleet Fans for the team. So far we are more than holding our own in the League so let’s hope this carries forward into the New Year. Another three points today would end the Year on a high.

On behalf of The Fleet Supporters’ Trust I wish all Fleet Supporters, all the players and staff a very Happy and Prosperous New Year.

In my Christmas dreams the mighty Fleet will have won the two games over the Christmas period and be ready to do the double over Eastleigh today – so let’s get behind the team and cheer them on a they strive for another three points – UP THE FLEET!

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LEYTON ORIENT NOTES

That’s Christmas and New Year over and once more we are at home for a tough game against Leyton Orient. It seems a long time since the Eastleigh game at the end of December – even more so with no game last Saturday – I find Saturdays without football are very strange days.

Results over Christmas and New Year have been good with some great performances yielding a haul of ten points from a possible twelve this shows a consistent improvement since Garry HILL and Ian HENDON took over. A credit to them and to all the players.  This improvement will, hopefully, be maintained for the rest of the season.

Our first ever visit to Chesterfield proved to be an eventful one to say the least. Drawing 3-3 having been 3-0 up at half time was not something most Fleet fans would have anticipated. The unpleasant events of the second half seemed to affect the player’s concentration. Pitch invasions by a minority of Chesterfield fans accompanied by fans confronting players on the pitch are to be utterly deplored by all right minded fans. Player safety has to be paramount. No doubt the subsequent F.A. enquiry with give its decision in due course but the disgraceful behaviour of a minority of Chesterfield fans cannot be overlooked.

Once again the fish and chips were excellent – thanks to The North Sea Fish Bar.

The Fleet Supporters’ Trust office now has a card reader which takes contactless and chip and pin payments. This means it is no longer necessary to pay by cash for away travel. It is so much easier and more convenient all round to pay by card so please try and do so if possible.

Those going on the weekend to Harrogate can also pay their outstanding balance by card. This MUST be paid by 21/1/2019. If you aren’t sure what you owe please contact me.

Bookings for away travel to Sutton on 26/1/2019 can be made at the Fleet Supporters’ Trust office.

I would encourage all Fleet Supporters’ Trust Members to use the Members Bar especially if you want a quieter drink before the game. The walk will help move some of those extra pounds gained over Christmas!

HARTLEPOOL NOTES

Good afternoon to you all, another Saturday not spent watching the Mighty Fleet was purgatory – following on twitter is nerve shredding – but the late winner from Andy DRURY did at least mean I went to the evening party in good spirits! I’m sure it put the icing on the cake for those Fleet supporters spending the weekend in Harrogate as well as those stalwarts who travelled made the long return trip on the day. It is much appreciated by the players and management as stated by Garry Hill in his post-match interview.

A big thank you to those who supported the weekend and day coach and a special thank you to Ann CLARK and Tony VOLKERING for their efforts.

The game against Solihull Moors saw a physical and cynical team take an ill deserved three points from a game in which they displayed a brand of football which would put off many fans and is not something I would pay to watch each week. Despite the loss I was most impressed with a very professional performance from our players following a rather turbulent few days. They were a credit to themselves and the Management team.

Next Saturday sees the long trip to Barrow – there is room on the coach at the time of writing so if you want to travel please book tonight at the Fleet Supporters’ Trust office – remember it is now possible to pay for away travel by card – this makes life so much easier for all concerned. The coach departs at 0600.

I would encourage members to use the Fleet Supporters’ Trust members bar in the Old Stand before the game and at half time – it’s a pleasant place to have a quiet drink and a chat or watch the football on BT sport. It is also open at half-time and after the game.

The Fleet Supporters’ Trust intend to hold an end of season function on Friday 26th April in the hospitality suite at the Kuflink Stadium. A live band, Chicory Tip, has been booked. They have a previous connection with The Fleet as I understand they were once managed by Roger Easterby of Cheer Cheer fame. Full details will be published when arrangements are complete but please book that date in your diary.

At the Solihull Moors game a seven year old Fleet fan was hit by the ball, as a result he suffered a broken arm. Having learnt of this incident I contacted Dave Archer and, thanks to his help, at half time tonight the lad will be presented with a signed shirt. A wonderful gesture from the Club. I’m sure you all join with me in wishing the lad a speedy recovery. I think that’s enough from me so let’s all get behind the team and cheer them on to another victory against Hartlepool and another three points. UP THE FLEET!

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SALFORD CITY NOTES

Last Saturday saw devoted Fleet Fans make the long trip to Barrow to witness a great effort from the players to see out a goalless draw, which, given the small squad available, was a decent return for such a long trip against a Barrow side on a good run. The efforts shown were much appreciated by those stalwart fans who got up early to leave Ebbsfleet at 6am. The acknowledgement by the players and staff who went to the travelling fans at the end of the game was very much appreciated. Once again the fish and chips were excellent delivered by the Olympic Fish bar as last year.

As I mentioned in my last programme notes a seven years old fan called Max suffered a broken arm at the Solihull Moors game and thanks to the efforts of Dave Archer a shirt, signed by the players was presented to Max by Ebou ADAMS during half time at the Hartlepool game. Thank you to Ebou and all concerned in making this possible. I know Max was thrilled.

The Fleet Supporters’ Trust intend to hold an end of season function on Friday 26th April from 7pm to 1130pm in the hospitality suite at the Kuflink Stadium. A live band, Chicory Tip, has been booked. They have a previous connection with The Fleet as I understand they were once managed by Roger Easterby of Cheer Cheer here come The Fleet fame. This function will include the end of season presentations for the Walking Football section. As you will have read elsewhere in this programme they reached the finals of the Kent Region of the Over 50’s FA Peoples’ Cup so congratulations to all those who took part. Full details of ticket prices will be published when arrangements are complete but please book that date in your diary.

Bookings for the away trips to Halifax, Maidstone and Gateshead can now be made at The Fleet Supporters’ office where you can pay by card or contactless. While you are there pop in to The Members’Bar next door for a drink and a chat.

Today sees a first visit to The Kuflink Stadium by Salford City in what promises to be another stiff test for the players, more so with the depleted numbers available. Now is the time to get behind the players and all pull together for the remaining ten games as they strive to reach the play-off places. Their commitment has been tremendous so let us all try to be the extra man as they strive for a victory today.

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MAIDENHEAD NOTES

Last Saturday saw devoted Fleet Fans make the long trip to Halifax only to arrive and be told there was a pitch inspection being made at 2.45pm. As we now know the game was called off due to a waterlogged pitch, this is far from satisfactory as fans have paid out considerable sums of money in order to follow their team. Those travelling on the coach had paid out a sum of between  £1000 – £1500 – a not inconsiderable sum of money. This could have been prevented by an early decision being made on Friday when, as I was told by a Halifax fan, the pitch was under water. Our Club made an early decision re the original Hartlepool game recently so these things can be done. Moan over!

Despite everything the fish and chips, hastily re-scheduled were excellent as were the King Prawns!

The recent interview with Garry HILL was great listening – his call for all to work together for the Club and his praise of the professional attitude of the players is something which I fully endorse. Now is the time for all true fans to continue their excellent support of the players and management team to the end of the season.

 The Fleet Supporters’ Trust end of season bash is on Friday 26th April from 7pm to 1130pm in the hospitality suite at the Kuflink Stadium. A live band, Chicory Tip, has been booked and a buffet is included. This function will include the end of season presentations for the Walking Football section. They reached the finals of the Kent Region of the Over 50’s FA Peoples’ Cup so congratulations to all those who took part. Tickets are £10 each – no reductions – and are available at the Fleet Supporters’ Office tonight and at subsequent home games. Otherwise they can be reserved by contacting me on 07951610878.

Bookings for the away trips to Maidstone, Gateshead and Havant can now be made at The Fleet Supporters’ office where you can pay by card or contactless. Details for the re-arranged game at Halifax will be published once the date is known.

From the home game next Saturday and the home games on 30th March and 13th April voting slips will be available for The Supporters’ Player of the Season award so keep your eye out for them. All supporters are eligible to vote. It is hoped the Trophy will be presented at the game on Easter Monday, along with The Bruce Sewell Award.

Now is the time to get behind the players and all pull together for the remaining games. Their commitment has been tremendous so let us all try to be the extra man as they strive for a victory tonight.

I think that’s enough from me so let’s all get behind the team and cheer them on to victory and three points. UP THE FLEET!

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BOREHAM WOOD NOTES

Tuesday night saw the Fleet gain three valuable points with a good victory over Maidenhead to end a sequence of draws over recent times. Being unable to be at the game; once again I was forced to resort to following events on twitter – a nerve-wracking experience if ever there was one! It seemed to me that goals at home are a bit like London buses none come along for ages then three come along together! Let’s hope for more of the same today. It seems the Fleet supporters impressed Gozie UGWU on his second time around debut so let’s do the same again and continue the excellent support shown by all true fans for the players and management team to the end of the season.

The Fleet Supporters’ Trust end of season bash is on Friday 26th April from 7pm to 1130pm in the hospitality suite at the Kuflink Stadium. A live band, Chicory Tip, has been booked and a buffet is included. This function will include the end of season presentations for the Walking Football section. They reached the finals of the Kent Region of the Over 50’s FA Peoples’ Cup so congratulations to all those who took part. Tickets are £10 each – no reductions – and are selling fast; so if you want one they are available at the Fleet Supporters’ Office today and at subsequent home games. Otherwise, they can be reserved by contacting me on 07951610878. As the saying goes ‘when they’re gone they’re gone’!

Bookings for the away trips to Maidstone, Gateshead and Havant can now be made at The Fleet Supporters’ office where you can pay by card or contactless. Details for the re-arranged game at Halifax will be published once the date is known.

From today’s game and at the home games on 30th March and 13th April voting slips will be available for The Supporters’ Player of the Season award so keep your eye out for them. All supporters are eligible to vote – all we ask is that you print clearly the name of the player for whom you are voting otherwise your vote may not count. It is hoped the Trophy will be presented at the game on Easter Monday, along with The Bruce Sewell Award.

I think that’s enough from me so let’s all get behind the team and cheer them on to victory and another three points. Those playoffs aren’t too far away. UP THE FLEET!

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WREXHAM NOTES

It seems that old adage ‘quality, not quantity’ is being proved correct by The Fleet as they continue to keep clean sheets and gather points in their efforts to edge nearer to the play-off places – this despite having a numerically small squad.

Saturday’s excellent victory at Maidstone saw a vociferous Fleet crowd of around 700 supporters roar them to a deserved three points. The first goal was a masterpiece of counter-attacking play.

Those die-hard Fleet supporters who made the long trip to Halifax on Tuesday night saw the team earn a well-deserved point.  Well done to all those were there to cheer on the players.

It was disappointing to witness the behaviour of a minority of fans on Saturday and then to hear and read of the racist abuse suffered by some England players. This type of behaviour is abhorrent and should be condemned by all right-minded fans; the most effective way to eradicate it is for all responsible fans to police those who partake in this behaviour and make them understand it is wrong and could have serious consequences for the team they purport to support. Passionate support is to be commended but boorish behaviour and abuse are to be utterly condemned. Having witnessed at first hand the crowd problems at football in previous decades it is our collective responsibility to ensure those times never return.

The Supporters Player of the Year voting is now underway. Voting slips and boxes can be found in the hospitality suite, the social club and the Fleet Supporters’ Trust Members bar. Voting will continue until the end of the home game on 13th April. The presentation will take place on Easter Monday at the game against Dover.

The tickets for the End of Season Bash are going fast with over 100 already booked so if you want one come to the Fleet Supporters’ Trust office to get yours. Any that have been booked MUST be paid for by 13th April at the latest or they will be offered for resale.

Bookings are now being taken for the away games at Gateshead, Havant and Waterlooville and Bromley. Come to the office today to book and pay for your tickets – remember the card reader is now fully up and running so you don’t need to pay by cash.

Today’s game gives The Fleet the opportunity to exorcise the defeat earlier in the season and gain three valuable points to move into the play-off places. So come on let’s get behind them and roar them on to victory. UP THE FLEET!

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DAGENHAM NOTES

Well, another tumultuous couple of weeks for Fleet supporters! Having wondered if the game against Wrexham would start, the supporters were treated to a magnificent performance by the team as they achieved a well- deserved victory and three valuable points in the chase for a play-off place.

Once again the professionalism of the players and staff was exceptional and is to be commended. In the aftermath of that day, social media went into a frenzy of ill-founded comments and rumour. This culminated in Dr Abdulla deciding to hold a meeting with supporters. This meeting was on Friday 5th April and around fifty supporters were present – both Fleet Supporters’ Trust Members and non-members. They heard an open and honest report from Dr Abdulla and Dave Archer as to the situation at the Club and the historical reasons behind it. Both confirmed their intention to remain at the Club for the long term; both stating their wish to see the Club achieve League status. It was most reassuring to hear and should serve to allay the concerns of Supporters and put to rest the scaremongering and rumours.

A very concise and accurate report of this meeting, written by Ed Miller, can be found on both the EUFC and Fleet Supporters’ Trust website. If you haven’t read it I recommend that you do so.

Even with all the uncertainty around the Fleet and their opponents, the next day bookings were still being made by faithful Fleet fans to travel to Gateshead. Their optimism was rewarded by a hard-earned point against a spirited Gateshead team who put on a good performance despite the off-field troubles they experienced. This point kept the team within reach of the playoffs.

The voting for Supporters’ Players of the Year ends today so if you haven’t voted today is your last chance. Voting slips are in the Social Club, Hospitality suite and the Fleet Supporters’ Trust office and bar. The presentation of this award and the Bruce Sewell Award will be made at the game on Easter Monday.

Those of you who have booked tickets for the End of Season Bash on Friday 26th April must pay for them today at the Fleet Supporters’ Trust office. There are still a few available if anyone hasn’t got one and would like to attend.

Bookings can be made for the away trip to Havant and Waterlooville on Good Friday 19th April – by popular request there will be fish and chips after this game! Bookings are also being taken for the last game away at Bromley on 27th April.

That’s plenty from me so let’s get behind the players and create a great atmosphere and roar them to victory and another three points in the race for the playoffs. UP THE FLEET!

To read Johns’ notes from last season

 CLICK HERE JB1718

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