Fans ‘pay what they want’ for entry to Grimsby versus Altrincham football match

May 19, 2011 by  

Fans were offered the chance to ‘pay what they wanted’ for the Grimsby Town FC vs. Altrincham FC football match last month, on Monday 25th April, in a bid to boost match attendances at Grimsby’s home ground.

The introduction of a ‘pay what you think it’s worth’ system was brought in after a cancelled match between Grimsby and Rushden and Diamonds earlier in the season resulted in £6,000 losses for the club and attracted negative comments after the club’s owners charged fans at half-price for entry to the rescheduled match. Many football clubs face charges for staffing and stewarding, as well as energy costs for floodlighting. One other major cost incurred by football clubs is the cost associated with printing and producing football programmes and flyers advertising the games.

Prior to the match with Altrincham, Steve Wraith, Grimsby FC’s accounts manager said that programme printing cost the club in the region of £1,400 per game. Costs for programme printing could be brought down by using a local brochure printer as these firms often offer better value than large national printers. The Altrincham game’s ‘pay what you want’ entry system was designed to cover the costs of printing and staffing, and the club hoped for an increase in the number of fans turning out to support their teams.

The ‘pay what you want’ scheme gave fans the option to pay £1, £5, £10 or full price and the club hoped to gage what fans thought was an acceptable price for entry into a football match, as well as boosting gate numbers. In the end, the total attendance at the game was 4,311 and the ground has a capacity of 9,546. The match ended in a 1-0 away win for Altrincham.