Filed: Wednesday, 28th December 2016
By: Staff Writer
In the wake of the numerous issues that have beset West Ham United's move to Stratford, KUMB readers have created their own 'ten point pledge' for the Board of West Ham United FC.
The ten points, which we are asking the Board to comply with, cover a range of subjects designed to ease what has already proved to be a difficult migration process and enhance the supporter's experience of the club's new ground.
None of the points raised are beyond the realms of possibility (although point 3 would require considerable financial investment) and all are made with the aim of uniting the club's fractured fanbase and strengthening the relationship between supporters and the Board.
Our ten point plan is as follows:
1. Surround the ground with local vendors - selling food/programmes/memorabilia as per Green Street - to give the surrounding area 'a West Ham feel' and to make it appear more homely. Consider adding WHUFC-related signage around the stadium and on the approach from the station.
2. Make a concerted effort to re-employ as many former Boleyn Ground stewards as possible on the same terms they enjoyed previously (including the same rates of overtime and a London living wage). Any other stewards should receive adequate training and be 'fan friendly'.
3. Replace the temporary lower tier with genuine, retractable seating, as promised by the club in their pre-move communications, with stands that are closer to the pitch and allow the concourse TVs to show live footage once again.
4. Offer the Supporters' Club, which is intrinsically linked to the club via both historical financial contributions and the Hammer of the Year award, a new home close to the new stadium.
5. Re-house the occasional visitors and day-trippers (those taking advantage of the Thomas Cook offers or Newham Council employees and their guests) in the upper tier and allocate the TBL seats next to the away fans to season ticket holders, as per the Boleyn Ground. This will also help to generate a better atmosphere.
6. Put the home fans first! Allow permanent access to all nearby overground/tube stations and ensure away fans leave last, if it necessary to prevent both factions leaving simultaneously.
7. Provide both recognisable singing and family enclosures at the new stadium and an accurate, up to date, seating plan.
8. Provide a notable increase in the number of shuttle buses running from Stratford to the stadium for the benefit of those supporters experiencing difficulty with the lengthy walk and make the drop-off points for travelling fans safer/more accessible.
9. Employ additional Supporter Liaison Officers in line with other Premier League clubs to act as fan representatives. (West Ham currently employ one, most PL clubs have at least five whilst Arsenal employ a team of 20+.)
10. Treat the fans with respect and agree to engage with us - and not just those who share your vision of a 'brand' new club - on a regular basis. If you are intent of banning supporters, for whatever reason, publish a Code of Conduct that we may adhere to.
These were the main points discussed, although supporters discussed a whole raft of potential improvements - all of which you may find on the following KUMB Forum thread.
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Hammers target seeking 'big club' move [23rd Mar 2017]
I'm sorry, says Dave [19th Mar 2017]
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Post-match press conference: Slaven Bilic vs Leicester City [19th Mar 2017]
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