CHELSEA DISABLED SUPPORTERS ASSOCIATION (CDSA)
ADDITIONAL COMMITTEE MEETING, 2018-19 SEASON
1905 Club, Stamford Bridge Stadium
Thursday 2nd August 2018, 4.00pm
Attendees Group represented/ role
Cornwall-Jones, Linsey Non-ambulant Rota supporter member
Courage, Jason Wheelchair Club Member (from 2018-19 season)
Law, Matthew Honorary committee member
McGeever, Timothy Ambulant Season Ticket Holder (from 2018-19 season)
Morse, Barry Ambulant Rota supporter member
Piggott, Diane CFC Disabled Liaison Officer and Supporters’ Clubs Manager
Regan, Andy Forum Chairman
Smith, Graham CFC Head of Ticketing and Head of Supporters’ Liaison
Collins, Eamon CFC Disability Liaison and Supporters Club Supervisor
Hayden, Lisa Non-ambulant Season Ticket holder
Hayes, Tim Non-ambulant match supporter member
Powell, Mick Ambulant match supporter member
The Chairman introduced new members for the forthcoming season, specifically welcoming back Timothy and welcoming Jason for his first meeting. This is something of a hybrid meeting as we have invited both last season’s representatives and new representatives. It is not a full meeting as we are just addressing two specific topics.
The Chairman repeated the request for all members to provide photos of themselves to help the Club publicise the CDSA on the main website. Minutes and a contact page will be displayed there. The contact page will not show representatives’ personal email addresses and representatives are requested to only bring issues of importance to our meetings that they are contacted about.
Minutes of the last meeting and this meeting should be circulated soon. The first full meeting will be on 12th September and this will be publicised to all representatives.
DISABLED SUPPORTERS’ SURVEY
The Club presented a summary of the results of the independent survey. Every season a questionnaire is sent to fans for the main supporters’ survey, and a separate survey is sent to disabled fans. Results of the main survey were publicised last season but due to responses being low, the results of the disabled survey weren’t concluded then. A further mailing took place but the response rate is still low, reducing from 139 respondents in 2017 to 34 in this survey.
The headline results are that the overall satisfaction index dropped slightly by 2.2% to 80.5%. Staffing scored very well again with main areas for improvement being access by car, ease of access to food and drink kiosks, and quality and price of food and drink. Questions are scored out of 10 by respondents. There is also an index measuring the importance of those issues to our fans. Ease of entering the stadium is important for fans for instance, whereas parking is not so important as it doesn’t affect many respondents.
11% are less happy within the 45-54 year old age group since 2017, whereas 25 to 34 year olds are happier, but as mentioned this is all from a very small pool of respondents. Next year the Club will email the relevant survey to our fans again.
The third-party company that runs the process, The Leadership Factor, unfortunately can’t appear today for the presentation. The reason for the fall in respondents is GDPR so the survey can only be sent to those who opt in to receiving it. It is not run on the website as we want to hear from genuine fans only. We also include incentives and will review that for next season as the Club wants a bigger response.
The Club was asked if it’s possible to have an accessible car park off site, with a shuttle service provided to the ground. The Club responded that it looks at practical proposals to improve all these categories. There are no local car parks we could use and also Fulham Road is closed 90 minutes before kick-off. Another representative commented that driving to matches here can be incredibly slow.
The Club added that it reviews responses carefully and takes note of the comments that are made by respondents. It is still a high scoring survey when compared to the main survey and the hospitality survey. A representative commented that changes introduced by the Club that result from proposals in the survey may encourage others to participate.
The Club repeated that it reviews all comments and feedback as it’s in everyone’s interest to maximise satisfaction amongst fans. In the second full meeting of the season here, for instance, we look at ticketing issues for next season, so a lot of input from a number of sources contributes to our policies.
Levy Restaurants manage our catering all over the stadium but there are different offerings and prices around the ground. Price and quality of food and drink are highlighted frequently by fans but whereas quality has improved a lot, fans generally want cheaper prices. It’s all a balance with cost and revenue issues.
CHANGES TO THE STADIUM
The committee was given a tour of current facilities, covering the Sensory Room, the East Stand and the Shed End.
The Club stated this is intended to assist those suffering from sensory disorder, such as getting anxious in loud crowds. The room is in the testing phase at present and won’t be ticketed.
This facility will be closely monitored to ensure it is only used by the disabled. Stewards will have Radar keys to allow access.
Disabled places in the stadium
There will be 236 spaces in all around the ground though the Shed End is not quite finished. A proposal to have additional screens is being considered for the East Stand in order to benefit those who don’t have a view of the giant screens in the corners of the ground. There are now 97 spaces in the West Lower, with four new ambulant seats there.
The old platform at the back of the Shed Lower has been renovated to add wheelchair spaces in home and away areas. Also, a sizable number of seats have been removed from the away section to allow a new platform to be built to site wheelchairs. For the home platform area, no season tickets will be sold as away fans take more tickets in that end for some cup matches.
The meeting and tour finished at 5.00pm. .