Meetings > 2006
Meeting Number 1 - Thursday 1st June 06
The summary can be read below, or here on Fly Me To The Moon.
The 12th Man - The Ayresome Angels
The first meeting of a new movement of Middlesbrough fans took place on the 1st of June 2006, with the aim of raising the atmosphere at Boro games, starting next season. The following article contains a brief summary of what was discussed (although it has been edited down for length). Read what's on offer, then if you like what you hear, get yourselves along to the next meeting.
On Thursday the 1st of June 2006, 14 fans turned out in Dr Browns for the inaugural "12th Man" (a working title) meeting. Initially the meeting was suggested with the aim of getting together a group of like-minded people, with the aim of raising the atmosphere at future Boro games next season. Some of those who attended had been involved in the Old Trafford and Steaua Bucharest card displays, whilst others were involved in the Middlesbrough Surfer or the creation of various other flags. However the general opinion was that all present were just ordinary Boro fans that simply had a genuine interest in assisting the match day experience.
It was unanimously accepted that the group would be independent of any politics, and was not to be a group of "uber fans" either. The aim being to work positively with all parties, and to be open to everyone in order to form a network of supporters and their opinions, which would be truly representative across the range of people that love the Boro. Once some initial plans had been put together, then the group agreed it would contact the club through Dave Allen to share some of the opinions and ideas with MFC directly.
The actual meeting began by setting the scene, and continued from there with people contributing their opinions and ideas. This continued and covered several areas. These are too great to be listed in this article, however some of the areas covered included:
- The positive atmosphere generated by Sevilla fans, including the organization, and the positive effect it had upon their team
- Gibson dropping season ticket prices for youngsters, potentially bringing a large new fan base into the ground that needs to be entertained not only on the pitch but also off of it, in order to get them involved and used to a big atmosphere in the future.
- How we as ordinary fans can encourage all visitors to the Riverside to support the team, a wide range of views were represented at the meeting and this is encouraged.
- Forming a connection between the 50 or so local buses that turn up from all corners of Teesside, to share and gather information and investigate funding so that each bus can produce its own flag to display at the ground
After several ideas were banded about, the group then focused upon itself, and how it would operate:
- The name, "The 12th Man" was suggested and agreed as a working title. Another name in the pot was "Ayresome Angels". Creative suggestions for a name to link the past with the future would be appreciated
- The current members of the group already has a successful track record in organizing, fundraising and delivering various products - be it events, trips, visual displays or meetings. This positive, successful reputation will be the cornerstone of the group
- The club currently has very little knowledge of what the group is trying to achieve, however the aim is to be fully open with them and form a close cooperative relationship with them
- The group will essentially be an independent supporters group, and the workings of other successful groups (particularly the shining example set the Aberdeen Ultras) will be looked at
- A point of contact in order to communicate with the group will be set up, in the form of an email address and/or website, as well as an identifiable brand/logo.
- The aim is not to implement wholesale change at the club (such as standing, ticketing, seating, anthems etc) but to simply concentrate on events that will improve the atmosphere through fans actions.
The initial goal is to get the banners, displays and flags up and running, whilst the group and its network grow. From here other areas that we can positively influence will be looked at. Future meetings will be held, currently scheduled to be the 2nd Thursday of each month, in Dr Browns.