Anyone else counting down the days until we return to St James Park? It’s all a bit more real now that the fixtures have been announced, writes Exeter City Club President Julian Tagg.

We’re very lucky to be supported by some fantastic sponsors, and it was good to welcome them to the Trust Suite for a bit of breakfast last week to officially unveil how our season will shape up.

First game of the season on August 10 will see Rotherham heading to St James Park for what should be a sell-out fixture. Three days later we’ll be off to Walsall and then it’s up to Northampton.

The Christmas and New Year games are always the next that people look at, and we’ll be welcoming a certain Matt Taylor’s Bristol Rovers back to SJP on Boxing Day. There’s another match which is getting interest this season and it’s those Hollywood favs Wrexham who will be heading to Exeter in April – I’m sure we can squeeze Ryan and Rob into hospitality if they fancy it!

The lads all returned to training last week, and they’re hitting the gym hard. Good to see the new ice baths at the training ground being put to good use – not sure Sweenz is so keen on them though!

The squad – and management staff - had a good workout in the Lympstone Amateur Boxing Gym on Saturday, which was swiftly followed by taking part in Exmouth Park Run. Well done Shaun MacDonald for being the first city player home and well done also to Gary, for staying at the back to make sure none of the players got left behind…

It’s all good prep for the pre-season games, which kick off this Tuesday with a trip up the road to Tiverton Town and they end with Eastleigh at SJP on August 3. Tickets are on sale for them all now, so come and join us as we start our new season!

And you can still get your football fix at SJP this Saturday for England’s quarter final against Switzerland. Join us to watch the game on the big screen from the Optimising IT Adam Stansfield stand. Kick-off is 5pm, with doors opening at 4pm and thanks to our friends at St Austell Brewery, entry is just £1. Come and get that stadium feel, for the game – the bars are open.

And as if that isn’t enough, you can come back again on the Sunday for the annual Party at the Park which begins at 11am. Perhaps we should have thrown in a camping offer with the England match, although I’m not sure Chaz would have been keen! The hugely popular Party at the Park yet again promises all kinds of entertainment and games, with bands, singers and stadium tours. There will be player appearances and it will be the first chance to see the new away shirt. You can also bid on some pretty impressive lots in the event’s charity auction, including lunch with the players at the training ground, matchday hospitality and player signed shirts. To find out more, visit the club website.

The recruitment team continue to work hard; we’ve had our first two signings, another Scot to join Gary’s red and white tartan army in the shape of defender Jack McMillan and last week Northern Irish international Josh Magennis, not sure about his Guinness pouring skills, though!

And there was also a new signing for me! Part of my role with Exeter City involves external representation of the club, whether that is locally or nationally. I’ve recently been appointed as the League One representative on the EFL Board. It’s a place at the table, which means that we not only get to represent the League One clubs but we’re in the room and can contribute to decisions that influence all clubs. I was alternate director last year, so that obviously didn’t put them off!

Look forward to seeing you at the Park very soon! Up the City!