Reading Football Club and the Supporters Trust At Reading (STAR) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding, which further strengthens the good working relationship between fans and the Berkshire club.
Following the Government's recommendations on supporter engagement in 2016 which were adopted by the Premier League and EFL, STAR join fan groups at clubs including Doncaster Rovers, Fulham, Grimsby Town, Nottingham Forest and Norwich City in formalising the structured dialogue between supporters and the club in this way.
Fans at Reading had already been involved at various levels in dialogue with the club in recent years - STAR representatives are present at the local Safety Advisory Group meetings, and regularly meet with club officials at Fan Engagement Group and senior management meetings - but the signing of the MOU formally underpins this, and solidifies the relationship between fans and club.
Roger Titford, deputy chair of STAR (pictured above, left), said “This is being hailed as a positive and progressive move by both the club and the Trust and we’re delighted to have got this agreement over the line.
“It adds to the excellent representation supporters already have to the club. Very few other clubs in the EFL can boast this high level of engagement with their supporters and we commend the club for involving its fans at every level of a range of decision-making processes that take place within the business.”
Reading's chief executive Nigel Howe (pictured, centre) said “I have always welcomed open, transparent communication between the club and its fanbase. STAR continue to loyally represent supporters at a number of our meetings and I have been encouraged to see other supporter groups directly engage with the club recently.
“To improve the service we deliver to our fans, we have to listen and act upon advice from those who live and breathe all things Reading Football Club. So this Memorandum of Understanding it just another way to strengthen the bond between our club and the fan in the stands.”
The FSA have long made the case that there are benefits for clubs in listening to and engaging with their fans, and if you're interested in improving supporter engagement at your club and would like some advice then get in touch.