Hello, and welcome to a new weekly segment that we're aiming to bring you throughout the upcoming season, lifting the lid ever so slightly on the inner workings of the Spireites.Every Thursday we're looking to go into a bit more depth from the media department at the Proact, perhaps even sharing any titbits of squad gossip we pick up along the way.
The Media Team
First, let us introduce ourselves. Nick Johnson and Iain Pearce (that would be myself) make up the small media team, and between the two of us we handle everything from the content and maintenance the website, producing the programme, all the social media channels - to filming and editing the videos on PlayerHD, YouTube and handling the media commitments at the club.
There are a myriad of other things that we also do, things you'd not expect us to in many cases, and we do rely on help from outside to get through. This year Craig and Paul are on placement with us from the third year of their journalism courses at the University of Huddersfield and they come in for matches and once a week to help out; we'll be hearing from the two of them throughout the season.
We often also have younger work experience students from the local schools who we try to give a bit of an insight in what we do. Not forgetting other matchday essentials such as Andy Barker and Steve Yorke who, since Saltergate and decades earlier, have operated cameras, commentated and helped in other ways - as have Howard Borrell and Phil Tooley, who nearly always say yes no matter how big or small the question.
We're based at the Proact, with our media room on the corner of the corridor right next to the manager's office and the coaches' office.
Media Day at the Proact
Two days until all the proper stuff gets started and today the media (including, of course, the Derbyshire Times) were invited along to interview the manager and some of the players and to see the first team all kitted-up and having the squad photo taken.
Before that could happen though Ritchie Humphreys was seen battling for a hair dryer, word spread among the players that there was wax to be had in the dressing room and, walking out to the pitch, Morgs was heard to shout "get those shirts tucked in!"
All went to plan for the photo shoot and having new-signing Lloyd Allinson there pleased Tina the photographer as it balanced out the goalkeepers. Elsewhere, people hardly recognised poor Angel Martinez with a football shirt on, let's hope he's back playing in it again soon.
We've not had the final shot back yet, so we'll have to wait and see who's blinked, who was stifling a sneeze and whether anyone's dared put the bunny ears behind anyone else's head.
Oxford United to Get it All Started
Valley Parade only seems like about a fortnight ago, but after a trip to Hungary, seven signings, that raffle and seven pre-season games, it's time to get going again.
Oxford's a great, albeit tough, pace to start and after that really promising second half on Tuesday the mood is high, both at the Proact and generally on social media.
Amazing how often the word 'Oxford' has come up in the last few weeks (last year it was Barnsley, the year before Leyton Orient) but then, much like any good roller coaster, after all the anticipation Oxford will soon have whizzed by, and with Rochdale, Swindon and Walsall in rapid-fire we'll all have forgotten there ever was that summer break before long.
We'll be here for it all of course, from August 6 right through to April 30. By this time next week let's hope we're able to solidify all of our optimistic pre-season hopes...until at least the second weekend of the season.
Iain Pearce - Spireites Media Team