OVERSEAS AMBASSADOR INTERVIEW – ABSENCE MAKES THE HEART GROW FONDER
In an interview with Darren Johnstone, Bahrain-based Hearts supporter Alec Peck – our first Overseas Ambassador – insists absence makes the heart grow fonder.
The Jambo and Foundation of Hearts pledger tries to keep connected with events back at Tynecastle from afar.
But now Peck has teamed up with the FoH to try and help mobilise the club’s support around the globe after being unveiled as our first Overseas Ambassador.
Alec was back in Gorgie on for the opening league match with son Jasper to take in the thrilling 4-3 victory over St Johnstone, and was presented with his commemorative virtual pitch plot certificate at half-time.
“It’s difficult watching on from afar,” admitted Peck as he discussed becoming a Foundation Overseas Ambassador.
“We have a small core of about six or seven Hearts fans where I am in Bahrain that will gather when a game is on TV and we’ll watch it in the pub. It’s not the same as being here at Tynecastle.
“It would be good if the club and the Foundation can try and help galvanise the overseas support.
“These guys care a lot about the club and it’s very difficult to bring them together into a cohesive group in the same way the big clubs like Manchester United and Barcelona do. They don’t need to do anything about their overseas fans at all because they’re there and grow organically.
“Simple things like making it easier for overseas guys to buy merchandise, give them the chance to come to the game when they are in Edinburgh.
“It would also be great if we can give people that are in the same boat as me to gather physically, or even on a website. It’s important they have that emotional connection to the club.”
Peck, like the 8,000 other Hearts fans that signed up to the Foundation, is proud of the part he played in helping to take the club out of administration last June.
He added: “Being an expat and not being able to support the club on a weekly basis in terms of going to the game, the Foundation was the perfect opportunity to put back into the club.
“The Foundation is a perfect way for all expats to give back; it’s easy to set up, easy to contribute.
“It makes you feel a connection to the club that you won’t normally have.”
There’ll be more about news our Overseas Ambassadors initiative shortly. In the meantime, we’re delighted to welcome Alec as our first appointment.