For those supporters who may have missed it in Saturday’s Accrington matchday programme, below is a summary of the last Special General Meeting of the Dons Trust.
Items on the agenda included plans for a new stadium in Wimbledon, setting up a new community charity, our new website, and, of course, the search for a new manager. Around 60 Dons Trust members attended the meeting on Wednesday, 20 September, with the key topics discussed as follows:
Erik explained the process for recruiting a new manager, how Harry Bassett was helping the Football Club Board to find the right person, and confirmed that Harry wasn't a candidate for the post. Members were keen to ensure that our next manager fully appreciated the history and culture of the Club. Other questions covered the selection criteria, the position of other full-time footballing staff and the club's football philosophy. DT Chair Matthew Breach explained that the DT Board's role would be to provide oversight of the shortlisting and selection criteria, and to ratify the Football Club Board's recommendation for final appointment.
Fittingly, there was a unanimous appreciation from members for the huge contribution Terry and Stuart had made to AFC Wimbledon over the past five years. They also expressed their appreciation of Erik Samuelson's leadership through a difficult period for the club.
Turning to bricks and mortar, Erik gave an update on our hopes to return to a new stadium, with an initial 12,000 capacity, in Wimbledon. He said that he had been meeting local political leaders in both Merton and Kingston to keep them fully aware of developments.
On the current stadium, there were hopes that the East Stand might be able to be re-developed at a more minimalist level than had previously been anticipated.
Due to the present uncertainties regarding both the new stadium and the East Stand re-development, the DT Board had decided to put its current consultation on future financing on hold for the time being.
Chair of the Community Working Group Nicole Hammond then introduced a proposal to set up a new charitable trust which, alongside the work of the Community Football Scheme, would be responsible for the DT's community activities. Establishing a charity would make good sense for a number of practical reasons, and with the Club having been awarded a Football League Trust grant of £30,000 for sporting involvement in education, health and social inclusion. Following discussion, members informally agreed to the Board continuing with its plans to establish a new charitable trust to take on the community aims of the DT.
The other major item of interest was the new Football League Interactive (FLi) Club website. Erik Samuelson agreed with members that the site experience so far was disappointing. The Club had been represented at a recent meeting between a number of equally concerned clubs and FLi. An action plan to address the shortcomings was being urgently sought from FLi.
There was positive online news from Deputy Chair David Growns, who reported that the new Dons Trust website would be launching shortly, integrated within the main club site.
You can read the draft minutes of the meeting by clicking on Dons Trust SGM. Dons Trust members are invited to email any comments to the DT Board by clicking on Trust queries.