CF10 Arms Park Rugby Trust was formed in May 2016 and is a democratic and representative forum open to all supporters of Cardiff rugby. We are a Community Benefit Society established under the Act of 2014 and registered with the Financial Conduct Authority. Our members determine our direction of travel, and our mission statement was produced directly by our membership.
We have achieved a great deal in our first three years. Our membership is now approaching 800. Many members who hold shares in Cardiff Blues Ltd. have proxied these to the trust so that we now hold a combined total of over 38,000 shares and are the 8th largest shareholder in the company. We meet regularly with key stakeholders at Cardiff in order to promote member views and are campaigning for supporter representation on the Board of Cardiff Blues Ltd. Working as part of the Heritage Committee at Cardiff Arms Park, we have been instrumental in cataloguing the memorabilia belonging to both CAC and Cardiff Blues, ensuring that this is properly stored and insured, and have built a virtual online museum that now has over 1500 objects. We usually hold member meetings twice a year and produce quarterly newsletters; we also work closely with our friends at Cardiff Blues Supporters Club.
Trust membership is very affordable and you can join here and in doing so ensure that your voice is heard as part of a growing fan movement for Cardiff rugby.
David Allen : Chairman
I’ve watched rugby at Cardiff since I was a schoolboy-my first match was that against the Barbarians in 1971 and I’ve barely missed a home game since. I became a Rugby Section Member of the Athletic Club at the age of 18, having been proposed by the then captain, Gary Davies, and seconded by the secretary, Alun Priday. I’m now a 40-year member of CAC, Cardiff Blues Season Ticket Member and shareholder. I chaired the CF10 working party from its inception late in 2015, and have been proud to see it grow from a vague idea to a fully-formed trust in a relatively short space of time.
The primary aim of any trust is to increase the role of supporters in the governance of the team that they support. This is a challenge that should not be underestimated here at the Arms Park. Cardiff Blues don’t have a great track record of involving supporters in decision making (even those that they’re formally obliged to consult with, such as shareholders) and have a history of making bad decisions (as per the Cardiff City Stadium). We’re now once again at a position when major decisions are about to be made and it’s crucial that supporters are at the heart of these decisions.
The situation is not helped by the fact that Cardiff is full of factions that essentially want the same thing but seem unable to recognise this basic fact. I believe that CF10 can act as a vehicle for unity-Cardiff rugby needs us all to pull in the same direction if it’s to reclaim its position in rugby’s aristocracy.
I’m fully committed to the regional role that Cardiff Blues now play in the modern landscape of Welsh rugby, but I’m also a traditionalist and believe that heritage is massive in any sport. Our failure to capitalise on our unique rugby history is a major marketing failure and one that has resulted in a significant identity crisis and accompanying disaffection. It’s crucial that the professional team recognises and builds on its origins, and that the premiership side features strongly in the proposed physical and organisational remodelling at the Arms Park.
I’m a clinical and academic psychologist. I spent all my professional career working in the NHS, latterly as Assistant Clinical Director at Abertawe Bro Morgannwg University Health Board. I’ve also held honorary chairs in clinical psychology at three universities. I retired from the NHS in 2012 and now run my own business. I’m also a mad cricket fan, being a member of both Glamorgan and MCC; I wrote the history of St.Fagans CC for its 125th anniversary, which I’m proud to say received a mention in Wisden. Finally, I’m extremely passionate about all forms of music and sing with Llandaff Cathedral Choral Society.
You may contact David if you wish to ask him a question.
Huw Jones : Secretary
Before retiring in 2013 I was Chief Executive of Sport Wales for over 15 years. I had responsibility for a budget of around £40 million and over 200 staff. I worked for the sports councils for nearly 30 years, including 25 years at Sport Wales. In 2011 Sport Wales was named in the ‘Sunday Times 100 Best Places to Work in the Public/Voluntary Sector in the UK’.
During my period as Chief Executive, Wales saw significant increases in children’s and young people’s participation in sport as well as Wales’ best ever performances at the Olympic and Paralympic Games in 2012. Also, a number of major initiatives were developed including: Dragon Sport and 5x60, Disability Sport Cymru, Community Chest, Elite Cymru plus a number of major lottery funded facilities (Wales National Pool, Velodrome, National Indoor Athletics Centre, National Indoor Cricket Centre of Excellence).
I currently provide advice on a voluntary basis to various governing bodies of sport on governance issues. I am also a mentor to a number of senior managers and university students. I am a member of the University of Wales' Audit Committee.
In 2015 I was appointed by the Welsh Government’s Cabinet Secretary for Health as an Independent Member of the Board of Community Health Councils in Wales. In that role I also Chair their Corporate Governance Committee.
I was a trustee and member of the UK Board of the Institute of Sport, Parks and Leisure and a Companion of the Institute of Sport and Recreation Management. I was appointed as a Fellow of the Chartered Institute for the Management of Sport and Physical Activity (CIMSPA). I was an adviser to the Board of Play Wales and a referee for 'Leisure Management: An International Journal’.
I worked for the (GB) Sports Council as a researcher and I was Economics Consultant to the Council of Europe where I undertook a European-wide study of the economic impact of sport. I have also advised Ministers of Sport in Ghana and the Kurdistan Region of Iraq.
Academically, I have a degree in Economics from Manchester Polytechnic, a masters’ degree in Econometrics from Manchester University and a PhD from Birmingham University. More importantly, as this statement shows, I have considerable experience of leadership, administration (including sports administration), financial control, strategic planning and organisational management.
The next couple of years will be hugely challenging with the new stadium development planned and the importance of ensuring that the history and heritage of the club is not just preserved but is an integral part of that development. An organisation gets one opportunity to get these things right.
You may contact Huw if you wish to ask him a question.
Derek Redwood : Treasurer
I have worked in an accountancy practice since leaving school in 1972. I am a qualified chartered accountant (FCA) and I am Managing Partner in Clifton House Partnership - a long established four partner practice in Cardiff. Looking after the financial affairs of hundreds of small and medium sized enterprises has given me a very wide range of skills and experience in the financial affairs of all types and size of business and voluntary groups. I believe that the Trust can benefit from that experience and that I am well placed to deal with the financial regulations to which we must adhere.
I am well versed in dealing with information of a confidential and/ or sensitive nature as well as the requirement for transparency in the financial dealings of the Trust. I am confident that I can make a positive contribution to the future of our fledgling organisation. My practice has acted as auditor for governing bodies and area associations in Welsh sport. I have personally acted for professional sportsmen and entertainers and have a good understanding of the issues facing individuals and organisations involved in sport.
I am encouraged by the enthusiasm and progress made by the group and I am a firm believer that the Trust can fulfil a role that can be of benefit to the rugby club and its supporters. As a lover of tradition I am particularly keen to play even a minor part in helping to preserve the heritage of a great club
I was born in Cardiff and have lived here all my life. I attended three different schools in the Canton area and played rugby at all school age levels. My interest in the game was encouraged by having the late Howard Norris as our games teacher in 2 of those schools. I regularly attended Cardiff RFC games in the late 1960's courtesy of the complimentary tickets provided by Howard.
I have been a season ticket holder at Cardiff for the last 15 years or so
My sporting career was in the round ball game and I was proud to have represented Wales at schoolboy and semi- pro levels. I was manager and later Chairman of a Welsh League football club for many years and have extensive experience in sports administration. In the voluntary sector I served as governor in a primary school for seven years followed by a 10 year term with a local sixth form college. I am currently an advisor for Tax Volunteers ( a charity ) and I am the founder of a fund raising group for a Welsh children's' charity. In that role I have been directly responsible for raising almost £300k in support of Bobath Children's Therapy Centre Wales. I was a very proud torch bearer in Cardiff alongside Sam Warburton for the 2012 Olympics and was awarded the British Empire Medal for charitable work the following year.
You many contact Derek if you wish to ask him a question.
Simon Baker : Board Member
Ok, so I was born in Newport, it’s not my fault! But I am Cardiff bred. There is Brains beer running through these veins (probably literally). And I love my rugby!
I’m a committed and passionate supporter of Cardiff Blues and Cardiff RFC and have been a season ticket holder and member for many years. I attend most home games and as many away games as I’m able.
Over the years I have been one of the silent majority bemoaning everything there is to bemoan about Cardiff Rugby! Now there is an opportunity to turn that silent majority into a vocal majority - to have a real critical voice.
Our club will be stronger if the voice of the supporters is heard and listened to. This I believe can be best achieved through the supporters’ trust. Together as a formal, democratic organisation we can strengthen the influence of supporters over the running of our club.
I’ve been a member of the CF10 Arms Park Rugby Trust working party since the first open meeting where we secured a vote to form officially and ever since have been actively involved in helping setup the Trust.
I am a member of the Cardiff Athletic Club heritage group and run the Cardiff Rugby Museum website. The history and heritage of Cardiff Rugby has become very important to me. The history of our club, in rugby terms, is of worldwide importance, through the CF10 Rugby Trust I will help to preserve our history and heritage.
A bit about me personally - I’m 54 years old and live in Canton with my partner Jo. Most of my working life I have worked in the entertainment industry supplying lighting and sound equipment. Besides rugby, my other passion is guitars - playing, repairing, restoring, building and collecting.
You may contact Simon if you wish to ask him a question.
Sally Carter : Board Member
I was immediately attracted to the aims and goals of CF10 Rugby Trust and joined up as soon as I saw the link to the website. I love the experience of watching rugby at the Arms Park, meeting up with friends and getting to know fellow season ticket holders sat in my little bit of the South Stand. Nothing really beats the experience of watching live rugby, even when the team aren’t playing well. The banter and camaraderie of fellow supporters keeps me going through the freezing cold, pouring rain and endless knock-ons.
I strongly believe that a good relationship between fans and club is vital. This was shown all too clearly when the club ignored what the fans wanted and moved out to Cardiff City Stadium. Most of us tried our best to cope with the new venue but the stadium never felt like home. We lost our link with the heritage of the club, we felt like visitors in our own ground, and people stopped coming to watch the games. We must never let something like that happen again. A good relationship between club and supporters is beneficial to everyone, fostering a real sense of family. I would like to help to make this a reality.
As a Museum professional I am passionate about Welsh heritage and keen to ensure that the potential of Cardiff’s fantastic rugby heritage is fully realised as part of any future redevelopment. This must include both the history of Cardiff RFC as well as the woefully unrecorded history of the Cardiff Blues. The recent survey conducted by CF10 shows that people are very supportive of including a heritage centre within any proposed redevelopment and I would love to help drive this forward.
I would like to make sure that the views of women who attend games at the Arms Park are fully represented. I know that there are many passionate and knowledgeable women supporters and they have strong opinions about the future of the Arms Park that need to be part of any broader discussion going forward. Related to that, I also think it is vital that we retain the welcoming and safe environment of the current ground. I have never had any fears about attending a match alone and maintaining that friendly atmosphere is essential in any future redevelopment.
If we are able to give the Supporters a real voice in the future of the club and the redevelopment of the ground then we will be able to both protect the past and embrace the future.
Andrew Collins : Board Member
Having been involved with the Trust since the first meeting, I feel I have played a significant role in its development from concept to now having over 300 members. During the early stages of the Trust’s formation, I made valuable contributions to what would become the vision and direction. As these developed, I helped to clarify this message and make it meaningful to supporters. It was at one of the first meeting that I suggested the all-encompassing phrase ‘Protecting the past, embracing the future’, which has since become the Trusts’ strapline.
I was heavily involved in developing the brand and its online presence through new digital media, this included setting up social media accounts and establishing an online presence. I co-ordinated online campaigns to promote the Open Meeting – the success of which was integral to the Trust’s formation – and assisted with the creation of the CF10 website. Following that first event, I continued to run the social media accounts with promotions, such as the #ClassicMoments weekly videos during the off-season. Whilst I have since handed this responsibility over to others with greater experience, during this time the Trust’s social media accounts gained over 500 followers, greatly helping to get the message across to fans and stakeholders.
I have also been involved in creating promotional material for both online and offline distribution. This has included producing infographics and share-able content for social media and creating printable flyers for events. More recently, I designed the CF10 Rugby Trust Fanzine, which was printed and distributed at matches. This involved working with other members of the team, who were creating the content, to ensure word count did not exceed the available space and to produce a Fanzine which looked professional and striking.
Aside from specific tasks and responsibilities, I have attended nearly all the Trust’s meetings to date and have been present at key events and promotional campaigns. I believe I have been able to offer the group useful advice, opinions and suggestions at these meetings, all contributing, in small ways, to the overall success the Trust has enjoyed.
My passion for Cardiff Rugby led me to get involved in setting up the Trust and I truly believe it will become an influential force and voice for its supporters. There is still a long way to go before we achieve that status, however I would greatly like to be involved in this process and hope to continue to support the group in the role of Board Member.
You may contact Andrew if you wish to ask him a question.
Lynn Glaister : Board Member
I can’t pretend to be born and bred loving rugby, like so many of you. I only discovered rugby union when I moved to Cardiff 31 years ago (having previously lived in the rugby league and football supporting north!
I have been a regular since that time. I have followed Cardiff, and then the Blues, across Europe with my husband (sadly now deceased). I live in Cathays and my other interests include music, politics, and real ale! My career has included being a Training Officer, a manager for an insurance company in various departments and I currently work for a South Wales Member of Parliament as her Senior Researcher and Office Manager.
I am standing for the board as I believe I have a wide range of skills that will benefit the trust and meet the required competencies for a Board Member. As a member of the working group I have been part of the team responsible for communications, especially the social media. I am a team player, but also not afraid to challenge where necessary. I will make my own mind up on issues after listening to all sides.
I believe the supporters voice should and must be heard. In an era when we rely on benefactors or corporate organisations to finance our clubs it is increasingly more difficult to ensure supporters wishes and needs are met. It is important that we have a powerful independent voice that is committed to finding out what the supporters views are and then to feed this back to the club, this Trust give us an opportunity to have such a body.
I also believe that the make-up of the board should reflect the demographics of our support. Even though it can seem like Rugby is a man’s world women do have a place in rugby, as players, supporters and administrators to name just a few ways to be involved. I want to help encourage more women to get involved in supporter’s organisations and that is why I joined the CF10 Arms Park Trust.
I am fully committed to our club and want to see it thrive. I have watched Cardiff and Wales all over Europe, I have seen the highs and the lows. I have watched us lift cups in Marseille and Twickenham. I just love the game. I understand the need for progress, but also respect the past. I want our club to succeed again, to achieve the highest level we can, and I want the fans voices heard by the Directors. Thank you for considering my nomination.
You may contact Lynn if you wish to ask her a question.
Andrew Bold : Board Member
I work as a transport policy adviser in the public sector, and have previously had various roles as a political researcher and adviser. I have degrees in history and industrial relations, and a doctorate in regional economic development.
From growing up watching legends like Gareth Edwards and Gerald Davies in action to seeing, in recent years, the stars of the future step on to the pitch for the first time, it has always been an experience to come to the Arms Park.
As a season ticket holder and regular attender of the Trust's open meetings, I am looking forward to making whatever contribution I can to their work, as a Board member.
Steve Coombs : Board Member
I’m a third generation Cardiff rugby fan and had my first junior season ticket in 1989. Sometimes I’m not sure that was a very constructive decision, but like thousands of other loyal supporters I’m still here.
I’ve had a season ticket most seasons since. I spent several years teaching English overseas and following the club from afar. I now run my own business in Gloucestershire, where I try not to be too envious of the frequent local derbies enjoyed by Gloucester and Bath fans.
Like many other Cardiff fans I grew up in the valleys north of the city. I represented Mid Glamorgan schools and Abercynon Youth. So, I feel I understand both the history of Cardiff rugby club and the rugby culture of the wider region. I believe that embracing the club’s heritage and embracing players and supporters from outside the city is not a contradiction. In fact the two things should naturally go together.
The club lacks a coherent, consistent identity and I believe this is at the root of it’s biggest failings. As organised supporters we can help drive positive change at the club.
I’ve contributed to blogs on the CF10 site, which were obviously impressive enough to get me invited onto the board. I’m also involved in helping run the social media account.