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Club news

Premier League launches Fan Engagement Standard


AFC Bournemouth AFC Bournemouth

The Premier League has today launched its Fan Engagement Standard, as unanimously approved by all Premier League clubs in November 2022.

The FES is designed to reinforce a commitment to ensuring long-term meaningful engagement with supporters and establishes a clear required standard for clubs to work to.

While AFC Bournemouth already has a strong supporter engagement programme, we welcome the introduction of the FES as a framework within which to work, to ensure the dialogue between the club and our supporters remains both constructive and regular. In the same way that the club has participated in, and achieved the Advanced level of, the Premier League’s EDI Standard since promotion in 2015, we fully expect the FES to deliver the same level of support, improvement and benefits to both AFC Bournemouth and our supporters.

The club’s work already includes dialogue with a number of different supporter groups on a wide range of issues, from fans providing feedback on their matchday experience at Vitality Stadium in our Supporter Experience Group, to discussing and influencing EDI plans and policies in our Equality Focus Group. Ad-hoc working groups are also set up for the club’s kit, brand and design, allowing supporters to guide and assess our plans in this area.

We also discuss ideas with and welcome feedback from the Cherries Trust, the club’s independent supporters’ trust, while our work with Proud Cherries, the club’s official LGBTQ+ supporters’ group, sees us engage and educate staff and supporters around LGBTQ+ topics. The formation of AFC Bournemouth’s Disabled Supporters’ Association, a group representative of all disabilities across our fan base, is under way and will work in much the same way as those groups already established, with the same aims of improving the experience of supporting our club.

Two key facets of the Standard are the publishing of an annual Fan Engagement Plan and the introduction of a Fan Advisory Board.

Our Supporter Engagement Plan will be launched before the start of the 2023/24 season and will clearly set out the club’s commitment to effective fan engagement activities planned for that season together with the associated roles of club staff in delivering these objectives. Prior consultation with existing supporter groups will take place to continue our comprehensive and collaborative approach.

The AFC Bournemouth Fans Advisory Board (FAB) will be comprised of representative supporters and a club board member and/or Chief Executive, along with other nominated senior club staff. Meeting twice a year, the FAB will focus on a strategic level, rather than the day-to-day club or matchday matters covered in our Supporter Engagement Group. Discussion points for the FAB will include heritage assets, facility re-development, and various engagement and communication strategies, along with the wider promotion of our brand and image.

The club plans to consult with existing groups to assist in planning for a representative FAB to be in place by the end of season 2022/23. This consultation will include setting the criteria and methodology of gaining effective representation of supporters on the Fans Advisory Board, together with associated parameters for its operation, such as tenure, terms of reference, and code of conduct.

The introduction of these initiatives will build on what we already have in place and will further develop the relationship between our club, our supporters and our community.

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