Chairman Barwell buoyed by success of Saints fans’ forum

FACING THE MUSIC - Saints director of rugby Jim Mallinder addresses the Saints fans' forum at Franklin's Gardens (Picture: Linda Dawson)
FACING THE MUSIC - Saints director of rugby Jim Mallinder addresses the Saints fans' forum at Franklin's Gardens (Picture: Linda Dawson)
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Leon Barwell hailed a ‘very productive’ evening at Saints’ season ticket holders’ forum on Thursday night.

A total of 250 supporters turned out at Franklin’s Gardens’ Rodber Suite to voice their concerns to the club’s key figures.

Pictures by Linda Dawson

Pictures by Linda Dawson

Chairman Barwell, vice chairman Tony Hewitt, director of rugby Jim Mallinder and chief executive Allan Robson were the four-man panel put in the spotlight.

They answered questions about on-pitch and off-pitch matters, including matchday experience and Saints’ recent form.

And Barwell felt the evening, which was well received by the attending fans, met expectations.

“I think it’s been very productive,” he said.

Pictures by Linda Dawson

Pictures by Linda Dawson

“I felt the supporters came along with very positive attitudes.

“There are some big issues, but we all want the same thing at the end of the day: for the club to be successful, and the questions were put forward in the right spirit.

“Hopefully we’ve sent people home, not necessarily thinking we can fix everything with a magic wand, but that we are going in the right direction as a club.

“That would be as much as I would expect from the evening and I would hope that is the case.”

Pictures by Linda Dawson

Pictures by Linda Dawson

The fact the night turned out to be a success has inspired thoughts of making it a regular event in the Saints calendar.

But Barwell doesn’t want to stop there.

He said: “I think we need a whole range of different activities which lead to better supporter engagement and ensure the decisions we’re making as an organisation include input and feedback, particularly where it directly affects the supporters’ experience.

“It’s good, old-fashioned banter in a sense, but it’s about our club and we all love it. It was a good night.

“You can’t beat getting people together, having a few beers and putting the world to rights.”