NNN contacts Burnley FC over £31 ticket price concerns

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Jamie Smith July 2, 2012 27 comments i have been a burnley fan for 55 years been ... 2 years ago 27

NNN has contacted Burnley Football Club’s chief executive Lee Hoos over fans’ concerns surrounding ticket prices.

Dear Mr Hoos,

Firstly, please let me introduce us. nonaynever.net is an independent Burnley FC fansite. We formed two years ago.

We want to draw your attention to some of the feedback from fans regarding the ticket prices announced recently by the club.

NNN published this piece – http://nonaynever.net/9832/burnley-price-fans-out-with-31-tickets/ – and received a strong reaction from fans. Take a look at the article and some of the comments.

Here are some highlights: “Personally, I think £31 for a ticket is a scandal. I also think that it is wrong for the club to charge me £20 to be a member.”

“What a joke. We will be back to gates of 10,000. Burnley is a poor place, with a lot of poverty. The club have no consideration for its fans. First time I have not renewed in years. Before we went up to the PL, tickets were £20. Serious jump in 3 years.”

“I’ve just looked on the Wigan website. I could go and watch them play attractive football (assuming Martinez stays) v Manchester United, Liverpool, Spurs, Arsenal, Chelsea, City etc for £28/£30 a time (Cat. A prices). No membership scheme. And do you know what? I am going to. I’m sick of my support and money being taken for granted. I like football the sport more than I like Burnley football club.”

“It’s a joke. £50 for 1 adult and 1 child for less than 2 hours of football and crazy prices for refreshments. Atleast £1 for a bag of crisp, it’s embarrassing. Looks like I’m only going to the Blackburn game at home and maybe hudersfield and Bolton away if I can tickets even though ‘general public’ (or people that aren’t millionaires) arenow behind; shareholders, membership holders, season ticket holders and then the loyalty point system. JOKE.”

“No season ticket this year and at those prices + travel from Manchester will have to pick my home games carefully. Something I’m reluctant to do as I’ve barely missed a home game. It certainly makes away games more appealing, at least you feel like you’ve had a day out.”

“I can see no way in which BFC can justify prices at this level. One thing for sure, I’ll manage an a way game, maybe 2 but at this price I won’t be able to afford to go on the Turf”

“I’m not on the breadline by any means, but I think £31 for a championship game is disgusting. I’m pretty sure tickets to all games were £22 in the season before PL football. So we’ve seen a 50% increase over three seasons. Not quite in line with inflation.”

Mr Hoos, as you can see, it’s a strong reaction. Ticket prices of £31 are extremely high for a club like Burnley and fans are being priced out. We also asked fans on Twitter to share their views. An overwhelming majority of fans who got in touch stated they think £31 is far above what a club like Burnley should be charging. Fans are not only being priced out, they feel the Club is taking advantage of them. Here are some of the responses we got:

“the amount of fans i use to go and watch clarets with that no longer go is staggering, only reason cost”

“each year i go less and less can’t afford it..football obliovus to every day cost increase”

“the crowds will go down even more I will not be going as much”

“ridiculous. Expect low attendances.”

“put it this way I won’t be forking that sort of money out,no way.”

“50% increase in three seasons is absolutely indefensible”

“it’s an absolute disgrace. Takes the p*ss out of the fans. I’ll be voting with my feet next season.”

Mr Hoos, I would like you to justify to our readers how Burnley FC came up with ticket prices of £31. Is the Club aware of how much money that is to regular people in a small, far-from-affluent northern town? A parent taking their child will have to find £50 to be a walk-on fan for some games.

Has the Club lost touch with the fans? We applaud some of the season ticket deals on offer this year, but the fact of the matter is they cannot cater for all fans – not all fans can afford them even with the payment plans available, not all fans can make it to every game. Why is the club driving away casual fans and exiles with such high prices? Not all fans agree with a membership scheme – indeed, it is notable we did not need one before Premier League football, but apparently now do.

We understand that the club has costs to meet and as fans we must shoulder some of that burden. But to us, £31 seems to be too far. What will the club do if attendances drop below 10,000 this season due to the high ticket prices? Will the club heed the warning of fans that prices are simply too high and people are being priced out? How much higher does the Club intend to push prices up in the future while people are trying desperately to pay their bills?

Thank you in advance for taking the time to respond. We look forward to hearing from you. Please note that your full response will be published at nonaynever.net for fans to see.

Kind regards,

Jamie Smith

@nonaynevernet

27 comments
  • Kevin Robinson

    Important piece here. Hope Mr Hoos gets back with a reasonable and detailed response.

    I’m having to pick-and-choose my games this season and with these prices it looks like I’ll have to miss out on the big fixtures.

  • Kevin Robinson

    Also, I notice those £20 memberships have gone on sale today.

    • Jamie Smithin reply to Kevin Robinson

      Indeed they have. I imagine the membership scheme will play a major role in the Club’s response (if we get one).

  • James Brown

    Be good to see what response is given

  • quoonbeatz

    conveniently ignores, like plenty of fans have, that it can cost less for a ticket than last season for plenty of games

    • Jamie Smithin reply to quoonbeatz

      But not three years ago, before Premier League football?

      • Quoonbeatzin reply to Jamie Smith

        It’s about two quid more than then isn’t it? Not exactly a huge increase. Costs a more to run the club than it did then as well, I’d have thought.

      • Neilin reply to Jamie Smith

        So what else do you know that’s stayed the same price for the last three years ?

        • Jamie Smithin reply to Neil

          Plenty of people haven’t seen their wages go up in the last three years, certainly not by as much as tickets have gone up.

  • Ben Peacock

    I can’t see the major problem to be fair, might be that I can afford that, however £31 is for a premium seat for one of the better games, and frequently tickets are cheaper than last season. Can’t afford the £31? Sit elsewhere in the ground? Or go to more so called ‘lesser’ games? There are options, and I think that is good.
    As for the memberships, as a child I got my membership 3 years ago for free. So a jump from age and natural increases is big. However as it reads on the website ‘With a saving of up to £4 per match*, you only need to attend six matches before that £20 investment actually starts to save you money!’ and then you get added bonuses being priority for the big games and away days. So I just see it as something which is good for the club, just one side of the coin I suppose though!

    • Jamie Smithin reply to Ben Peacock

      Fair points Ben. But we’re concerned about the rising cost of top price tickets – this is the main issue we think. If the increases continue at the same pace, tickets could be £35 in a couple of years.

      • quoonbeatzin reply to Jamie Smith

        It’s only the cost of the top price ticket for people who hardly go to games though isn’t it.

        • Jamie Smithin reply to quoonbeatz

          Yes. But our feedback suggests this is a significant number of fans, which is why we’ve taken the step of contacting the Club.

          • quoonbeatzin reply to Jamie Smith

            it may be a significant number, but its probabyl a significant number who are missing/ignoring the facts. i bet plenty haven’t bothered to work things out for themselves. the £31 is a headline grabber, but its quite easy to make it relatively cheap to watch games. by their very nature, the walk-on fan isn’t going to be attending a lot of games anyway. obviously there’ll be exceptions to this, but not that many.

          • Ben Peacockin reply to Jamie Smith

            I know, just i still think options are good things, and if you are going for the best seats you should pay more money, take hospitality as an example you pay £114 per person including vat, but it is for the better seat abduction experience, be interesting to see the response though!

  • Matt Smith

    Supply and Demand
    If the club can Sell 19,000 tickets for £31 then they should, its the only way they can cover losses made because those same fans moaning about the price dont want to go to matches against the peterborough/charlton/bristol teams and so we get 7,000/8,000 attendances when tickets are £15-£20

    so i totally disagree, make blackburn at home £35-£40 in my opinion, and then offer a £5 discount if bought with a peterborough/charlton/bristol ticket (another scheme which we have seen used before)

    • Jamie Smithin reply to Matt Smith

      I think the logic is kind of backwards. Walk-ons are the fans clubs have to attract to increase attendances. To set prices so high – presumably in the hope it boosts ST/membership sales – seems very short-sighted to me.

  • Jonas

    Supply and Demand? Really? Is it actually worth getting 19000 on for one game if this takes 2-3000 for all the other home games? It’s cheaper to go to Rovers and Wigan. Almost no transfer activity of note, Premier League, parachute payments and transfers fees disappearing down a bottomless pit.

    I would have thought Burnley really need to give fans a reason to keep going or, in many cases like mine, to actually come back. Even a cash cow can only be milked for so long before it runs dry.

    One final point on membership schemes – inflating a price then suggesting you can save money by getting back to the price it should have been is the kind of fuzzy logic I’ve come to expect from Burnley. It is also a way of ripping off away fans isn’t it?

    • Jamie Smithin reply to Jonas

      You’re exactly right on memberships. I’ve banged that drum repeatedly. I think the whole idea of memberships is pretty outrageous and can’t believe it’s been so widely accepted across football.

    • quoonbeatzin reply to Jonas

      Somewhat flawed logic there Jonas. If the cost of all the other home games was the equivalent of the markup on the “premium” games, you might have a point. but it isn’t. Getting a crowd of 19000 for one game isn’t going to take 2-3000 off every other home game as those people had no intention of going to all those games anyway. if they did, they’d have got a season ticket.

      Rovers and Wigan might be cheaper but they are subsidised by the best part of a decade on PL tv money and still actually being in the PL, in Wigan’s case.

      The idea that BFC is a cash cow is just daft. Its a cash cow for only one set of people – the players. If you don’t want them to milk it, then we’ll be heading down the league. Just the way football is these days.

      • Jonasin reply to quoonbeatz

        I see your point but the reason I see it that way is once people stop going regularly they can quite quickly stop going altogether. One thing that might get them bitten by the bug again are games against the likes of Rover, Bolton, Huddersfield etc. Once they realise they have to shell our ridiculous amounts for those games, along with the need to buy a membership, I think it becomes more of a hassle than it is worth. I wonder how many fans make a late decision a few times a year to go on who’ll think twice because of the ‘non membership’ inflated price?

        As a final question, are there any examples of small clubs like ours where membership schemes have proved successful? I can’t think of any but I’m sure there must be quite a few out there if we’ve decided it will work well for us.

  • Jon Palich

    I wrote to Mr Hoos more than 2 weeks ago, with a similar complaint regarding the pricing of children’s tickets in areas other than JMU.
    I have not yet received a reply.

    • Jamie Smithin reply to Jon Palich

      Very interesting. Surely the club cannot just ignore the concerns of fans. Have you tried following up with a phone call, Jon?

    • Kevin Robinsonin reply to Jon Palich

      I believe the Club used to have a policy of replying to customer/supporter feedback within 3 days. To not receive even a standard reply is very disappointing.

  • Lorraine Kluczniak

    I always get the feeling they are trying to get more and more money out of the fans for quite frankly some mediocre performances

  • James Thresh

    this is awful even though i am a season ticket holder, £31 for a adult ticket are you mad Burnley is not London where everything is dear its a place that is trying to improve its economy and all your doing is making things worse. The fans that came last year was very small compared to the past 4 seasons, mmm i wonder why. The season tickets are way too over priced. Next season it will cost me £450 to watch next season, that’s more than a pc we all know you put prices up because of blackburn in the champonship but do you not think that sky or itv or bbc will put it on tv and fans wont pay £31 to watch it when its free on tv come on think about it
    many thanks

    James

  • tim

    i have been a burnley fan for 55 years been through good and bad,but i truly belive that the board are running our club into the ground,kilby took more money out off the club than he ever put into it he is sitting on millions now.god knows how much fletcher took?Burnley fans are not idiots,you will now see lower gates now you have sold every player that was worth money,(greed).where are all the millions gone that we got for wembley trip?for the sale of all our players?the compo from coyle?all the parachute money?the money for the sale of our last desent player jayrod?why are the board hell bent in trying to take our club lower and lower.just when we have games with bolton and blackburn,its going to be an embarasment,because we no longer have a hope with this team.£31 is the straw that broke the back of the BURNLEY FANS i for one have give up hope,sorry can’t take anymore from this board. r.i.p. b.f.c.

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