Committee Election 2021 

Mark Turner – Supporting Statement

Here is what I will stand for if elected:

  • Building on our growing reputation as one of the best-run, best managed and most passionately supported clubs in football

  • Fair pricing and a fair deals for fans, suppliers, sponsors and community

  • Putting Blackpool first whilst helping other supporters’ groups where appropriate

  • Addressing the current security situation, particularly post-match crowd control on and around Bloomfield Road before something goes badly wrong

  • Helping to build a sustainable club playing a full part in looking after the local and wider community, environment and local economy of the “Gold Coast”

  • Representing interests of out of area supporters

  • Helping reinvigorate BST – there’s so much more to do.

I live in West Kirby on the Wirral and have been attending since 1974 when I still lived in Thornton.  I’m currently a season ticket holder in the North, standing near where our favourite old barrier used to be in what was, and is becoming again, the best Kop in football.

Along with many boycott observers, my final straw under the previous regime was the suing of supporters, people I’ve since come to know and respect. I walked away after the watershed Huddersfield game.  As well as Judgement days, BST meetings and other protests I attended and supported some of the legendary court days, cherishing Sir Marcus’s £31.27M judgement as our finest hour! However, the roll call of those who died while our club remained under the yoke is something that will hurt forever.  We lost people we’ve come to know and love over 46 years through this wonderful club, great characters who were denied the opportunity to see the bright future we have now.  

I run a small business supporting organisations of all sizes from PLCs to small charities to develop workable sustainability strategies, with a particular focus on fair treatment for suppliers and communities.  If you will, the polar opposite approach to the business practices of some who might linger in our memory! I’d look to bring some of my experience in these areas to the role.  Under Simon Sadler’s generous and steady hand we’ve already made great strides.  Involving community assets like the Armfield Club, the reach and ambition of our various supporters’ groups, and with so many charitable ventures now afoot, we can do even more, raising the bar for years to come on what it means to be a sustainable, community focused football club.  

Finally, I want to highlight our most pressing current priority.  We simply must sort out the shambles of the current security and crowd management approach, particularly post match. We must seek informed dialogue with the club, the stewarding contractor and the police.  We have a new fan base these days, gradually becoming more diverse, enriched by the energy of many young people who largely don’t “do” Supporters Trusts and formal meetings.  These lads and lasses could have drifted away but luckily for us they’ve caught the tangerine bug.  We need to represent their interests, listen (and maybe sometimes here and there save a few from themselves a little) so I’d try to have my eye on that.

Disclosure (confession time):

I should also disclose responsibility for starting most of the lockdown AVFTT matchday commentary threads.  I appreciate this could kill my vote but fair’s fair, confession is good for the soul.  Win or lose, “keep it on the Island”, “keep it legal”, never accept “half a loaf”, and above all, come on you Tangerine Machine!