Article 5

Have you ever got excited at the thought of visiting a motorway service station? I know it’s not normal but when your are on your way to your first away game after such a long time due to the Covid lockdown it’s something to get excited about.   It’s not about deciding which venue to visit for lunch it’s hoping to find fellow supporters to finally catch up with and everything that goes with travelling away to support your beloved Panthers as they play Newcastle Thunder. While we recognise that social distancing is still in place it doesn’t detract from the fact that this is another step towards normality.   On arrival at the ground it’s another opportunity to catch up with friends again and join in the pre match banter with all the rugby league supporters of both teams. Guessing who is behind the mask is another game! We are all excited to be able to watch a live game in the flesh. The singing and shouting begins as the match gets under way and it feels so surreal as if it’s a dream.   The dream continues as an excellent away victory makes the journey home that much better with smiles on our faces and the songs in the car, reminding us all why we love this great game and are now being able to travel and support our team. The day ends as it began with another stop at a service station for tea!   Next week we’re are back at the Shay as Featherstone come to town and we hope the smiles can remain in place as we take on one of our fiercest rivals and look to consolidate our place in the league!   David Durbin.Chair Faxtrust.

Article 4

In the English dictionary the word coach has been defined in many different ways. The essence of coaching is to help a person or team go in the direction they want to go. I have also seen a quote which helps this idea as it say’s “Don’t practice until you get it right, practice until you can’t get it wrong”.   How galling it must be then to watch your team continue to get it wrong. Watching as a fan it’s very frustrating but for the coach it’s hair pulling out time ,that is if he has any. And of course while it takes several people to put together a team it’s the coach who immediately takes all the flak.   This is the case with my beloved Panthers at the moment after only four games and I would personally call for patience and understanding. A new team takes time to gel and while it is very frustrating to watch there have been some positive signs and good performances from individuals. When all the parts become whole we will be flying and hopefully I won’t have to keep going out for long walks to calm down! We know we are in a tough league and no team has the right to a win, it's all down to a collective effort and hard work.   We supporters pay our dues and of course are therefore entitled to voice our opinions but when things are difficult surely it’s time to hold our nerve and get behind the coach and the team. We always have this roller coaster ride and for the majority of us we are here for the long haul.   So onwards and upwards to bring down the Rams and clip the Eagles wings before our fierce rivals Fev arrive at the Shay when hopefully we can get behind the team with that must missed vocal support! David Durbin. Chair Fax Trust.

Article 3

If someone had say two years ago that the only way to watch live sport was through streaming or tv you would have said they were crazy. Now at the moment it is the only way to do it. This medium however still allows you to experience all the emotions of actually being there especially when you are watching your own team.   This was the case in the Durbin household when the Panthers played London Broncos in our first league game of the new season recently. The cries of “penalty ref” and “get them onside “reverberated around the room. Thankfully the team played extremely well and it was certainly more smiles than moans crossing my face at the time.   Top of the league for a few days, a very welcome sight!   The final result reflected our dominance in the game and hopefully this will continue in our next game against our local rivals the Bradford Bulls. Always an eagerly awaited contest and one which normally would draw one of our largest attendances of the season. This would have been our first away travel too in normal circumstances but of course it’s not to be at present so out comes the laptop again!   We have stayed active in our fundraising all throughout lockdown with the website continuing to generate sales and our auctions on Facebook have been very popular. This is in no small measure because of the involvement of our Trust Ambassador John Bentley, a former Fax favourite. Our recently held raffle was a success and again John was involved in drawing out the winners which was shown on a video on our social media platforms.   A big thank you goes to all of you who have continued to support us through lockdown. Your support as always is very much appreciated. More auctions will follow and we are also planning a summer sale of merchandise which will be advertised soon.   Stay safe and well and we will all be back in our favourite grounds before to long and perhaps we can finally switch off the laptop!   David Durbin .Chair Fax Trust ([email protected])  

Article 2

As I mentioned in my last article this one will tell you what we the Fax Trust do and how you can help.   Firstly, I hope you have seen the £5,000 cheque presentation we gave to the Club in last week’s edition of this newspaper. How could you have missed it! It was achieved by a great deal of hard work by our eleven Board members, Trust members, and the Club supporters in general.   Our fund raising start’s with YOU becoming a member of the Trust for the princely sum of £15 for a full year! What do I get for this I hear you say, well it’s excellent value as for starters we will put you into a monthly draw with the prizes being of greater value than your membership! Good Yorkshire value!   On top of this we will send you a monthly newsletter and finally we have numerous shops and businesses who are prepared to offer you a discount on their products and services. This part of your membership has been temporarily suspended for this year due to the pandemic as it It was felt that with the majority of them being closed this year it wouldn’t be right to ask for discounts but it will be reinstated next year. Our communications continue with our social media platforms on Facebook and Twitter.   On match days at the Shay we have a presence at both the South and East Stands where we sell retro shirts and memorabilia as well as doing bucket collections all of which go towards the funds for the Club. Hopefully we will be there again this year, depending of course on Covid restrictions.   It’s not all work as we do like to play, and we hold a monthly quiz at the Ivy House on Shay Lane which includes a supper for only £3 courtesy of Pete Macnamara and if you are really lucky we sometimes throw in a game of bingo with prizes !   As sports fans we all like to pick our own teams be it in football or rugby and we are no exception. So we also have a Fantasy League of our own kindly managed by Steve Thomas and this can be found on our new website which we launched this year. Also on the website you can purchase merchandise and sign up for membership all at the click of a button.   We also have a market stall in town twice a year, hold auctions on our Facebook page, and have had past players dinners, sport's quizzes in local rugby league clubs and race evenings.   So as you can see all of this enables us to support our Club and if you would like to get involved or have ideas you would like to put forward please do contact me.   What we really want next is of course to able to watch live games!   Our season starts in earnest when we take on London Broncos on Friday 2nd April 5pm at the Shay. The game is being streamed on the Our League app and we can’t wait. It’ll be like Christmas come early!!   Reports on match days and away travel adventures will follow as soon as we are able. Please stay safe and well !   David Durbin. Chair Fax Trust.

Article no 1

Who are we? We are Fax Trust. A group of people from all walks of life ,united by just one thing – our love and passion for Halifax Rugby League Football Club, or Halifax Panthers, as we’re now called. If we were a stick of rock we’d have Halifax Panthers written all the way through us. Cut us and we bleed blue and white. We support our team through thick and thin, win or lose, good or bad. We get knocked down, but we get up again and we never stop supporting our club. We are an independent voice for everyone who loves and supports our great club. We give our time, our money, and ourselves to help our club. To help our club be the success that we all want it to be. We’ve been around for quite a while. We started as the Supporters Club at the old Thrum Hall – now there’s a name that will bring back memories for a lot of people! Speaking of Thrum Hall, here’s a fact which you can amuse your friends with – at the time it was the highest professional rugby league ground in Britain! Anyway, in 2002 we changed our name to the Halifax RLFC Independent Supporters Trust. Now we know that’s a bit of a mouthful, so most people call us the Fax Trust. WARNING – BORING BUT IMPORTANT PARAGRAPH ALERT. Back then, we registered ourselves as an industrial and provident society. ‘So what?’, you might say. Well, that means that we are regulated by the FCA, and we are required to provide full financial accounting transparency. That means that everything which our members raise or contribute is accounted for and every possible penny goes to our club. So, over the years we’ve existed solely to raise funds to support Halifax Panthers while at the same time maintaining complete independence. Over the years, we’ve raised several hundred thousand pounds. Yes, really. You know those big cardboard cheques that lottery winners get presented with? We’ve given more of those than you’ve had hot dinners. Well, almost. For many years we supported our Reserve grade team, and at the risk of blowing our own trumpet, many of our current players are here because of our efforts. Names like Brandon Moore, Conor McGrath, James Woodburn-Hall, Elliott Morris, the Davies brothers, Sion Jones and Will Calcott, and the returning Nick Rawsthorne ,to name just a few. Not to mention those who are plying their trade elsewhere,  like Welsh international Chester Butler now at Huddersfield Giants. Not a bad result I hear you say! Our next article will let you now what we do and how you can help.Please stay safe and well!   David Durbin. Chair Fax Trust.

MONTHLY DRAW UPDATE FOR DECEMBER

Posted by Duncan Mitchell

As we all know, many things have been put on hold this year because of Covid, including our monthly member's draw. The good news is, though, that via the miracle of Zoom we've been able to do the draw for the 10 months that we've missed. The lucky winners are below. As always, we'd like to thank all the businesses that have so generously donated prizes.

Nick Hitchin – A £20 gift voucher for Eesome Gifts at Skircoat Green

Alan Scott – A £20 club shop voucher

Lesley Haigh – A voucher for afternoon tea at Stanley's Kitchen, Ripponden

Andrew Gray – Two away travel tickets for use on Neil's Fun Bus

Dave Mitton – A £20 club shop voucher

Vicky Hoban – A beer and wine box

Lilian May Nichol – A £25 voucher for the Boothwood Inn at Rishworth

David Appleyard – A 2021 Halifax season ticket

Peter Clayton – A meal for two at the Ivy House, Holmfield

Andy Riding – A Christmas hamper

Winners of the club shop vouchers and season ticket need to contact the club to arrange delivery of their prize, and the winner of the away tickets needs to contact Neil Arber. All the other prizes will be delivered to the lucky winners in a Covid safe manner.

FAX TRUST NEWS ITEM – SHOP

Posted by Duncan Mitchell

The Fax Trust online shop is open for business! Just click the shop tab at the top of the page, and look at the great merchandise; ideal for treating a rugby mad loved one, or even for indulging yourself!

You'll find vintage replica shirts, plus some actually worn by our Fax players (don't worry, we've washed 'em first), as well as a great range of gift ideas.

We're also proud to announce our exclusive mugs and prints, specially designed for us by artist Robert Aspin.

So, what are you waiting for? A couple of clicks and that's your birthday present list sorted without having to leave your armchair!