Much work is still needed in and around Edgar Street over the coming weeks to ensure the famous old stadium is ‘fit for purpose’.
Ken Kinnersley, the clubs’ non-executive operations director has been quick to emphasise the job of rejuvenating the Hereford Football Club ground is far from over.
As a result, Hereford FC are now holding ‘volunteer days’ on Saturday each week until the campaign starts in earnest come August.
However, Kinnersely was quick to praise the existing workforce of volunteers who have reinvigorated Edgar Street over the past few weeks.
“They are unbelievable. They are a small gang of about 25 who have turned out regularly.
“The amount of work they’ve done, and the spirit in which they’ve done it has been just incredible, particularly when you think about some of the material they had to handle early on.
“They are still here now, they come in now on a daily basis when they’ve got a few hours.
“We had a chap on Sunday who caught a train in Buckingham at some ridiculous hour to come to Hereford to take part in a painting group. He arrived just before midday, got straight into it, worked through until 4pm and then shot off back to the station to get on his train back to Buckingham.
“We had another group on Saturday. One chap had come down from Derby, second time if not the third time. They did a lot of white painting of the Meadow End.
“They’ve now decided to paint all of the curved wall on the fans side of the Meadow End.
“Any fan of this club who understands what these people are doing will be full of admiration for them.”
Many Meadow End regulars are unlikely to recognise the back of the terrace which has been subject to renovation work which has improved the image of the stadium no end.
Indeed, Kinnersley feels the stadium is already in a better state than existed 20 years ago.
“The cladding at the Meadow End has transformed this ground.
“It’s gone from looking like a ramshackled old club to something so much better.”
But matters will soon turn to actual match-days. And that is something of concern.
“Match days is the big problem.” Kinnersley claims.
“We’ve had a lot of volunteers here at weekends cleaning the place up but match-days are a problem.
“We need more turnstile operators, we need stewards. Both people who are already stewards and people who are willing to train as stewards.
“We need people who are willing to come in on a Saturday morning. We could do with a gang of about eight or ten people, so it rotates a little bit, to come and move furniture around, set rooms up for functions, set up the hospitality units.
“The more bodies we’ve got then many hands make light work and we can share it around so people don’t have to come for every game. We can then sort out a rota system.
“I also want to put together a stretcher party. I’ve got a couple of people who have already put their names forward for that.They will be trained by Doctor Frith to do the job properly.
“And there are many little jobs that will need doing, some of them we probably haven’t identified yet.
“The roles we are seeking to fill are turnstile operators, stewards, stretcher bearers, qualified First Aiders, match ticket sales, programme sellers, ground cleaning team, and also facilitators to come into the club pre-match and assist with setting up the tables and chairs required for the various hospitality and social rooms.
“We need a lot of volunteers so we have sufficient to operate a rota system and offer cover for holidays, illness’ and other unavoidable events that happen in life. Here at Edgar Street we cannot stress enough the level of match day volunteer support we are going to require to operate the club safely, efficiently, and sustainably, and in that order of priority.
“Your help is needed and will be gratefully received.
However, the operations director maintains the club will benefit from a galvanised support base.
“What I’ve always wanted to do is put a bit of pride back into this football club after what we put up with over the past couple of years, to get some pride back.
“It is a proud club, we’ve got a proud history and we mustn’t forget that.
“I know July 11th, provided we get the safety certificate, it’s going to be an emotional day.
“I can see when the day comes it’s going to be something else.
“My other hope is that all those people who took different decisions at the beginning of last season can forget that.
“Let’s get on with the football at Hereford Football Club.”
If you can help, and are over the age of 17, please contact the club as soon as possible via the email address: email@example.com