Chairman’s Update #18 – 18 July 2020

Thank you, once again, for taking time to read the latest update on behalf of the AFC R&D Board. On behalf of my colleagues, I hope you have found these updates useful in keeping you all updated on the Club’s activities over the last 18 weeks.

First this week, I would like to thank those Members that attended the AGM and Members’ Forum last Wednesday evening. Approximately 50 members attended and although we are aware that there were some technical issues for a few, it was very successful. It is always a little daunting carrying out such a meeting via Zoom for the first time, so we thank everyone for taking part and making it work. The meeting was recorded and will be posted in the Member’s Area of the Club website just as soon as we’ve processed it for all members to view. The result of the recent election of 2 members to the Board was confirmed at the meeting so, we would like to congratulate Scott Stapley on his election and formally welcome him to the Board and also congratulate John Gregory on his successful re-election. The next step for the new Board will be to elect the various Club officers and appoint any co-opted members, which will happen at our meeting this week.

In last week’s update, I mentioned that we would be launching a new and exciting initiative which we hope will ensure we have a main sponsor on our shirts for the new season. Hopefully, you will have all seen our new business and supporter raffle to “Become the Diamonds Home Kit Sponsor for 2020-2021 season –for as little as £250!”  Our home kit sponsor raffle offers businesses and individuals, by nominating a good cause of their choice, an affordable opportunity to be our home kit sponsor for the 2020/2021 season. Provided there are sufficient entries, the winner will become our main kit sponsor. Individual raffle tickets cost £250 and will be entered into the draw, which will be held on 9th August 2020. Full details, including the individual package benefits and terms and conditions, can be found here – . The raffle is open to businesses, large or small, as well as supporters, individually or in groups. Every business or individual that enters will receive as a minimum:

  • A Single perimeter board at the stadium for the entire season or a home shirt for individuals who enter.
  • Four Ticket Pack for use at any League game or games.
  • Included in a dedicated “Friends of Diamonds” website page with a link to their own website or their nominated good cause website.
  • Listing in each programme for the entire season as “Friends of the Diamonds”.

Over the next few weeks, we will be upgrading the Club website to improve its functionality and reliability. The intention is that for most users, the familiar look and interaction will remain the same with a few improvements. Behind the scenes however, we will be updating the operating and hosting systems. Consequently, the Club website may not be fully available over a short period of time to enable the necessary changes to take place. We hope to be able to advise you in advance of any likely downtime so please watch out for further updates.

On the football front, we are now seeing increased activity across the Club. In line with current guidance, training has resumed for most teams, including the 1st team and U21s who trained at Moulton College last week. Of course, it isn’t training as we know it as current guidelines mean that any contact, including small sided games, is not permitted but nevertheless it was good see everyone back together.

Just as I am finishing writing this update, new FA guidance for the return of football has been released (here). It will take a short while for the Club, our League and various other relevant parties to absorb this information and put plans in place for implementation of the guidelines. However, in the meantime, work to prepare for the new season continues at full speed and we are very confident that AFC Rushden & Diamonds will be ready to get first team matches underway in accordance with the appropriate protocols.

On an individual level remember that the best place to follow the guidelines issued by the Government and Public Health England are updated daily and can be found here –