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Fans Focus - Non League football clubs


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Everything posted by eartheart

  1. We are pretty lucky in that most of the teams in the conference next year are within easy striking distance for away fans. Grays, Dagenham, Gravesend, Crawley and Woking are an easy M25 trip away. Rushden Cambridge, Oxford and Stevenage are all pretty local. Tamworth, Stafford, Kidderminster and Burton are a pretty simple trip up the M6. Weymouth, York, Hereford and Exeter are well supported anyway so should bring a few. Southport, Forest Green, Morecambe and Northwich may be a bit less attractive but all have more support than Yeading Hayes and Thurrock. With constant mention on the footy results, conference table and so forth and if we do okay I think that a regular home support of 1,100 is possible plus 300 away fans. So about 1,400. On the last day of the conference all the gates except Gravesend v Burton were over 1,500. I think it is really important to keep prices as low as possible, there are going to be lots of games next year, 23 in the league, FA CUP fourth entry, LDV fans (or whatever it is now called) FA trophy, etc. and it is surely better to get more folks paying a bit less than less paying more. Family packages also should be considered. This is still fifth division football. I'm sure people will want to charge more and I don't know what the conference set as a minimum but I'd like to see the price set at a tenner or maximium of eleven. Anymore and it really does start becoming onerous. Eartheart
  2. While Gibbo may be desperate to get away from Clarence Park it will take at least 2 years and probably much longer to realise that, by which time we might be back in the Conference South. It seems to me that the focus between now and August must be pretty much totally on doing the best that can be done for the next few years and possibly much longer at Clarence Park. A seperate group can be set up to further other plans. Indeed there is a lot to be said for Clarence Park that shouldn't be forgotten or overlooked. Primarily it is a site owned by the people and city of St.Albans it is the right and natural for a team calling itself St Albans City to play there. Better than be the Emirates or TNS or some fly by night name and company. I do actually support my town not some wealthy bloke or organisation. Second, it is cheap. A guy on the website from Oxford United was saying it costs them £400,000 per year to lease their new ground. We pay a pepercorn rent. Be under new illusions about the financial stresses a new ground would put on a small club like St Albans and the assorted conflicting interests that would arise. I oppose anything that would see increased environmental costs as part of the deal. Thirdly, it is a great location at present near the centre of the town and near the station. This will be increasingly important as the price of fuel goes off the radar scale in the coming years and for people like myself without cars and who come by train the present venue makes it much more accessible. Fourth, the park is a beautiful setting . Clearly the ground facilties are not good enough but a lot more could be done. In future, if the new ground does happen the Park could be used as a training ground and community outreach venue. So any money spent now will not need to be wasted but seen as an investment for the whole City. Maybe improvements could be sold to the council on this basis. Finally, it is unreasonable to expect supporters to voluntarily do all the work that needs doing over the next few months. The changing rooms toilets, catering outlets could be done pretty quickly by a building contractor and maybe as a sort of in lieu sponsorship. Free advertising hordings, programme advertsing etc. Attendences and income next will be much greater, average of 1,500 or more. Income will be considerably greater and so we can speculate a little. Having the council own the ground gives us lots more dosh than we might otherwise have despite the shortcomings. Hope these thoughts can be carried forwards to the AGM and board. Unfortunately I cannot attend. Regards Eartheart
  3. I contacted John Moules from the Conference Board ( e-mail below) about the high price for play off tickets and the need to buy tickets in advance. I copy a slightly edited reply from him below. I pointed out in return that I could not really follow his logic, how is £13 an average price. 'The Conference Board decide the Final Ticket pricing based on an overall average for North/South plus it is a Promotion Final. There are no restriction on the number of concession tickets (under 16 and senior citizens) available which for previous finals we have had limited numbers for. All ticket match due to strict segregation requirements for a non policed fixture at the stadium. The alternative high police costs with no segregation. It is easy to be critical but when you have to be responsible for decision making then it becomes much more difficult to please everyone concerned.' John Moules Operations Director The Football Conference Ltd 51 Highfield Road Dartford Kent DA1 2JS john@footballconference.co.uk
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