My name is Peter Jones. I have served as Chairman of Wrexham Supporters Trust since 2011 when we became a 100% fan owned club, and a Trust board member since 2003.
I have been a Wrexham supporter since my father took me to the Racecourse in the 1960s, helping out as a programme seller in the 1970s; and was a programme contributor for over 25 years; as well as having produced many books on Wrexham Football Club, including editing the club yearbook for nine years.
I have been involved with Wrexham Supporters’ organisations in raising funds for Wrexham Football Club since September 1994 when I was a founder member of the Shropshire Reds Supporters group before becoming a co-opted Board member of Wrexham Supporters Trust in 2003 following the discovery that the Racecourse Ground had been sold to property developers. I was fully elected to the Trust board in June 2004.
Since then I was involved in helping the Supporters’ Trust to highlight the plight of the Club and the Racecourse; as well as leading the fundraising group in helping the Trust to raise over £800,000, most of which was eventually used in securing the purchase of the football club as a fan owned club in November 2011.
Having served as Vice-Chairman of the Supporters’ Trust since 2008, I have now proudly served as Chairman since WST became the first ever Supporters’ Trust to take over a professional Football Club as a going concern in 2011.
I fully endorse fan ownership and the co-operative philosophy that brings. I believe that this is the best way forward for the sustainability of our club for future generations, having been so close to losing it to property developers, and other ‘chancers’. I would like to encourage more fans to become ‘shareholders’ of the Football Club, and take part in the democratic process that we as a fan owned club undertake.
I take on board those fans wishing for a millionaire owner with money to invest, but the word ‘invest’ is interesting as to how that would equate. At present any individual who has the best interests of the club can ‘invest’, by way of sponsorship; hospitality; advertising; even a donation. However, it should be remembered that members of Wrexham Supporters Trust can be so proud in the fact that fans as an entity have donated well over £1 million to Wrexham Football Club with no questions asked.
Having cleared the inherited debt within three years of taking over; the Trust have given our managers the best playing budget we can provide each season, and that will continue. Further to this, in July 2016 a 99-year lease on the Racecourse Ground was agreed with Glyndwr University, and as well as having concerts on the Racecourse for the past three years, last March saw the return of the Welsh international team to the Racecourse.
As a board we look to feasibly improve on the work that we do each season, but never resting on our laurels, as we always look to do better. We do this by listening to our members; debating and making a decision – some of which not every one agrees with, but rest assured any decision made is done in the best interests of the Football Club.
On Match days, I can now be found hosting in the 1864 suite before the game using my knowledge as historian of Wrexham AFC to interview former players of the Club, which has helped build up further income for the Club by utilising the 1864 Suite on the Mold Road side of the ground.
Away from football, I took early retirement from the Civil Service in 2013 after 31 years, but not one to sit around I was employed with the NHS for 30 months before returning to work with the Civil Service for the past two years. My spare time is taken up with my commitment to my role on the Trust Board and fully appreciate my responsibilities of not only being a Trust Board member, but also that of Chairman, and continue to help and promote Wrexham AFC as a fan owned club, spreading the good name of the club around the football family.
We have shown off the field that a co-operatively owned football club can be faithful to its high ethical standards, keeping a keen focus on community involvement, as well as being financially sustainable, but there’s no doubting that all these off-the-field successes will only be surpassed by promotion to the Football League, which we all crave for.
I hope you will vote for me to remain as a cog in the wheel that will achieve that aim, as it would be one of the proudest moments of supporting Wrexham AFC for me. If elected I still feel I have a major contribution to make in helping Wrexham AFC move in the right direction.
Nominated by Brian Davies and Bryn Jones