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An open letter from Chairman, Chris Booy

Friday’s European Challenge Cup victory was a fitting end to what has been an incredible – and at times surreal – 2019/20 campaign.

The opening day derby win over Bath, over a year ago now, set the tone for a season that will live long in the memory for Bears supporters across the globe. Pat Lam’s men secured historic doubles over Bath and Gloucester, beat European champions Exeter away from home and the team achieved a third placed finish and our highest ever points total in the Premiership.

To be able to celebrate those achievements with a trophy last weekend – surrounded by brilliant people who care deeply about the club – was without doubt my personal highlight of the past two decades I have been involved. What’s equally exciting is that we believe this is just the start. Pat has a world class management team and a squad with a core of homegrown players, supplemented by world class talent who are proud to represent the jersey.

The class of 2019/20 topped the stats charts in so many areas and achieved results whilst staying true to the dynamic, exciting Bears brand that we have come to be known for. With Pat at the helm driving our vision, the sky is the limit for this great club and we aspire to dominate in the Premiership and Europe for years to come.

There is no denying that there have been turbulent times away from the field and it is with deep regret that we have not been able to share the joy of the team success with our magnificent supporters. We are incredibly grateful for your continued backing and for the thousands of messages, emails, cards and social media well wishes that the guys have received. It will be a special moment when we are all back together at Ashton Gate.

I’d like to thank CEO Mark Tainton who, during an unprecedented season impacted by the pandemic, has shown outstanding leadership off-field to ensure that the Bears have been prepared as possible for the challenges ahead. Mark has been fantastically supported by Gavin Marshall, the group’s chief financial officer, and Mark Kelly, who is doing an excellent job as managing director of Bristol Sport and Ashton Gate.

Finally, we pay tribute to Steve, Jon, Maggie and the entire Lansdown family, who continue to show unwavering support and commitment to the Bristol Bears and our community. Nothing would have been possible without the Lansdowns and it’s their vision to see sport thrive in our proud city that has given us the platform to succeed. The club is truly grateful.

Enjoy the short off-season and we look forward to the 2020/21 campaign.

Up the Bears!

Chris Booy

Bristol Bears Chairman.


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