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Fans’ survey reveals overwhelming support for greater fan ownership at Hibs

Date: 26th September 2014

• 84% believe it is time for greater discussion on fan ownership options
• 4086 fans participate in survey

Results from the recent Future of Hibernian survey have been announced to supporters.

The meeting of the Hibernian Supporters Association last night (25 September) heard the results of the survey which was conducted by Supporters Direct Scotland following a request from Hibs’ supporters.

Over 4000 fans completed the survey with results showing a clear backing for a united fans group to drive change in a positive and productive manner.

84% of supporters confirmed that it is time to look at fan ownership options and to seek a change of direction in the ownership of the club. 80% also stated that they believed Easter Road should be safeguarded as the future of the club and any change to that would require fan approval.

68% said that they would be willing to join a membership scheme to provide additional income for the club and 69% said they would be keen to attend an event with supporters from other clubs currently benefiting from fan ownership models.

Additional comments received highlighted on the lack of focus on the playing side at Easter Road and that failure had become all too common within the club, that despite many changes of manager and playing squad.

Neil Wheelan, supporters’ survey organiser commented: “There was a high consensus that any progress must be a positive campaign aimed at improving the club. The view is that change must be driven from the fans and not from within as all evidence points that this way does not work and especially given the last of trust between the club and fans.

“We acknowledge that whilst Hibernian is not in administration, the club are falling deeper and deeper into debt and are now in the lower half of the second tier of Scottish Football. Our club is in a crisis and the only group who care enough to halt this decline are the fans. The spirit of the ‘Hands off Hibs’ and ‘Stand up and be Counted’ campaigns has to be resurrected to find the best and right way to get Hibernian back to where it belongs. Sir Tom Farmer always insisted he bought the club for the community and this is the best way for him to hand it back to the Hibernian community in a dignified manner and providing a legacy.

“A new united Fans group will be formed over the next few days and will then proceed to engage with all relevant parties.”

Paul Goodwin, Head of Supporters Direct Scotland, said: “This is the biggest single club survey that we have ever done in Scotland and the results are emphatic and speak for themselves. Having seen what has been done at other clubs, the Hibs fans are determined to unite and drive a positive change and if the passion and experience in the room last night is any indicator then I have no doubt that they will be successful.”

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