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Charlton Fans Protest Fund - End of Season Report, May 2017

Background

The Protest Fund was launched on 3 January 2016 with the aim of providing a ready source of funds to enable protest ideas to be turned quickly from concept to reality. Regular reports on the fund have been provided in line with the commitments we made at launch, including an end of season report in May 2016 which gave more detailed information on sources and use of funds. Our updates are primarily to re-assure the many Charlton fans who have donated that their money is being properly accounted for.

This latest report covers the period 3 January 2016 to 5 May 2017. It does not aim to give full year on year comparative data but key changes from the last report are highlighted where appropriate. Additional information has been provided this year on the spend by "event", e.g. the Unity Protest.

Overview

After the series of impactful protests in 2015/16, it was clear that this season was going to provide a stern challenge for the protest movement as a whole. Matchday protests at The Valley required scaling back in frequency as an increasing number of fans were boycotting either partially or completely.

To fill that gap and maintain momentum, a more diverse range of activities were undertaken and the fight was increasingly taken to Belgium. Two of these visits were particularly high profile. Firstly, travelling in a ‘Roland Out’ liveried London Taxi, protesters targeted a number of key points in Belgium over a three-day trip whilst the second (in a great collaboration between CARD and The Belgium 20) concluded in a march through the town of St Truiden to the Stayen Arena, alongside St Truiden fans similarly despondent with Duchatelet’s ownership. Both trips were fantastically successful in once again generating a high level of national and international press and TV coverage. More importantly, we know full well how these, and the other trips that have been undertaken to Belgium, are an irritant and embarrassment to Duchatelet in his home town.

Headline Finances

Income to date £56,470

Expenditure to date £47,050

Reserves on hand £9,420

Income

Income to date is £56,470. The source of funds (all in £s) is:

Donations......................................................34,921
Merchandise sales..........................................12,705
Coach fares and sponsored places.................. 4,088
Other cash donations, raffles and auctions..... 1,879 (includes Boat Party, Protest song revenues, £120 donation from Brighton & Hove Albion Supporters Club)
Specific Payments........................................... 1,857 (where money has been paid into the protest fund for an agreed specific purpose, e.g. the air banner at Gillingham)
Sponsorship of alternative programme........... 1,000
Interest........................................................... 20

The major source of funds is still donations, although these are proportionately lower, accounting for 61.8% of all income (79.9% last year). These are a mix of regular monthly/quarterly payments and occasional often very substantial donations. The fund received a fantastic boost in response to our "Target £50k" challenge late in 2016, which saw the target smashed before Christmas.

Merchandise sales grew to 22.5% of income (14.1% last year). This reflects in particular the tremendous success of the range of Covered End Choir merchandise. We are truly grateful for the outstanding hard work put in by the team of Lifers who made (and continue to make) this happen.

Coach fares are a new item this year. It is important to note that this is not income from the coaches run by CAS Trust, but rather those to Belgium and Coventry organised and subsidised by CARD.

Expenditure

Although the Protest Fund is open to all fans or fans groups, unsurprisingly most funding requests come from the organised protest groups. Over the life of the Protest Fund payments have been paid to and on behalf of CARD, The Belgium 20, Women Against the Regime (WAR) and one individual fan. It is fair to note that CARD is by far the largest recipient of these groups, with both others self-funding many of their own initiatives.

Requests for funding (including from CARD) are reviewed by Davo55 and Curb_It and approved (or otherwise) by both under a dual signatory system to ensure openness and accountability. All payments are made against receipts or supplier invoices, invariably direct to the supplier.

Expediture to date is £47,050. The expenditure by classification (all in £s) is:

Projectiles......................................................15,477 (e.g. stress toys, beach balls, balloons)
Coach hire..................................................... 6,220
Banners & flags.............................................. 4,681 (e.g. banners, flags, placards)
Other visual materials.................................... 4,639 (e.g. stickers, t shirts, beermats, badges, fake season tickets, inflatable Roland)
Printing.......................................................... 3,575 (e.g. leaflets, alternative programmes, posters)
Merchandise supplies..................................... 2,182
Scarves........................................................... 2,135
Taxi wrap....................................................... 1,910 (i.e. the application and later removal of the Taxi for Roland livery)
Specialist services.......................................... 1,628 (e.g. legal advice, specialist services on trademarks)
Advertising.................................................... 1,271 (e.g. AdVan, billboards, newspaper ads, postcards in Taxi for Roland, )
Air banner...................................................... 1,020
Travel costs.................................................... 753 (e.g. Taxi eurotunnel and expenses, band for Unity Protest)
Christmas cards............................................. 220 (i.e. cards sent to all other league and local non-league clubs)
Misc............................................................... 1,339

As a percentage of total expenditure, spend on projectiles reduced from 36.5% to 32.9%. This reflects the fewer number of in-stadium protests but offset by larger volumes of projectiles for those matches chosen for protests, including Coventry away where we shared the costs with the protesting Coventry fans. There were various new items this year, such as coach hire, taxi wrap, specialist services and the air banner which reflects the greater diversity in the range of protests undertaken.

Looking at expenditure by "event" shows some interesting data. The largest events by spend (i.e. those accounting for at least 5% of total spend each), were (all in £s):

General campaigning 9,073 (19.3%)
Unity Protest in Belgium 7,330 (15.6%)
Brighton Home 5,490 (11.7%)
Coventry Home 5,058 (10.7%)
Sheffield United Home 2,974 ( 6.3%)
Merchandise supplies 2,932 ( 6.2%)
Taxi for Roland 2,484 ( 5.3%)

The Future

No doubt the nature of the protests will further adapt to reflect the emerging circumstances but while the protests continue, the fund will be there to support them.

We thank you once again all for all the donations, the expressions of support and the practical help. Having the funds available to maintain protests is not in itself enough - it needs time, effort, creativity, courage, persistence and skill - but without the funds, YOUR FUNDS, few ideas could make it to fruition. Every single contribution has helped to maintain the protests against the disastrous owner and leadership of the club we love.

Please continue to support the fund by donating on-line to:

Protest Fund
Sort code 20-68-04
Account number 50661678

Or you can pay by Paypal: protestfund@gmail.com

Davo55 and Curb_It
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Comments

  • Excellent work from all involved. Let's hope he's gone soon & we get our great club back to being run normally. With a bit of luck no more donations will be needed & the remaining funds can be donated to a worthwhile charity, however if he sticks around I & I'm sure plenty of others will keep donating to rid the club of the toxic twosome.
  • Thank you very much indeed for all your hard work and dedication. It is much appreciated.
  • Amazing work - thanks to both of you.
  • Thanks to you both for your hard work with this. Let us hope the fund will not be needed for too much longer, then we can hold our celebration party with the balance as @blackpool72 says.
  • Covered End and HantsAddick how long have you both been mind readers :wink:
  • Whoops, I copied from CE's quote. Still you should have said it!
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  • What is done with any left over money when he sells is none of my business.
    But if I did have a say in it I would give the lot to the upbeats.
  • Great work. Thanks to all organisers and participants.
  • What is done with any left over money when he sells is none of my business.
    But if I did have a say in it I would give the lot to the upbeats.

    Fair enough. Only joking.
  • What is done with any left over money when he sells is none of my business.
    But if I did have a say in it I would give the lot to the upbeats.

    Fair enough. Only joking.
    I know :smiley:
  • @Davo55 writing Spell It Out out of history :wink:

    Good work all involved.
  • @Davo55 writing Spell It Out out of history :wink:

    Good work all involved.

    I wasn't trying to write the history of the protests, but if I was Spell It Out would have a very honourable place
  • Thank you @Davo55 and @Curb_It for all the work you put into this. You must be some of the first to take credit for the fact that Roland is apparently willing to sell the club.

    Also, doing this, the financial transparency is fantastic. Hats off to you, and to everyone who has coordinated and participated in demonstrations this year. You are well and truly legends.
  • Davo55 said:

    @Davo55 writing Spell It Out out of history :wink:

    Good work all involved.

    I wasn't trying to write the history of the protests, but if I was Spell It Out would have a very honourable place
    Only pulling your leg, only that SIO did spend some of the first money. Now absorbed into the CARD collective but responsible for the protest branding ; - )
  • Thank you for this Davo & Curb_It; so easy to follow!
    Let's all hope we don't need it next season, but if we do the Fund couldn't be in better hands.
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  • Echo that, @N01R4M. Huge thanks to @Curb_It and @Davo55 for keeping this all in order and being quick, sensible and efficient in any dealings.
  • Davo55 said:

    @Davo55 writing Spell It Out out of history :wink:

    Good work all involved.

    I wasn't trying to write the history of the protests, but if I was Spell It Out would have a very honourable place
    Only pulling your leg, only that SIO did spend some of the first money. Now absorbed into the CARD collective but responsible for the protest branding ; - )
    Indeed @Henry Irving. The money collected during the handout of black and white scarves is included in the "Other cash donations..." line and accounts for about £500 of that figure. Happy to put that on the record. Thanks.
  • What is done with any left over money when he sells is none of my business.
    But if I did have a say in it I would give the lot to the upbeats.

    Should definitely donate money, but would be great to have some sort of celebration with some of the money!
  • Thanks Brenda and Alan for your hard work and for the clarity of your financial report.
  • Well done you two. Excellent work and good to catch up with you against Swindon.
  • TEL said:

    Well done you two. Excellent work and good to catch up with you against Swindon.

    You too Tel.

    And thanks to everyone for the kind feedback. Appreciated.
  • Nice one @Davo55 and @Curb_It :smile:
  • redsek said:

    Just an 'ordinary fan' but nothing short of total respect for all the hard work put in by those who drive the protests with such enthusiasm and determination. Also my two children would like to extend their thanks for having the opportunity to sneak little pink pigs through security and throw them on the pitch.

    Nothing ordinary about you or any other Charlton fan.. Here's hoping for change.
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