In response to current issues being raised with us recently, members of the Supporters Club & Trust alongside SLO Jerry Tocknell met with the football club’s CEO Phil Alexander & Head of Communications Dave Barton on Friday 28 July 2023.
A brief summary is provided below but we once again encouraged the Club to engage in more meaningful collaboration with supporters along the way rather than simply publishing faits accomplis. It was agreed to hold a follow up meeting in the coming weeks.
Kits and training wear
Feedback on kits and training wear was articulated, including replacing the robin crest with the bird, colour, collar, price and colour of training kit, poor quality, lack of stock…
Questions were raised as to the lack of away kit so close to the season and the lack of communication from the Club on this. The Club took away an action to come back to us with further details including release dates.
We reminded the Club to consider colour blindness in their choice of kits.
The Club confirmed that the disabled parking charge increase of 30% for the coming season will be reversed and remain at last season’s levels. It affects about 20 people who will be contacted directly.
Fees on away tickets and coach travel
Fees for away match and coach travel are managed by Bristol Sport across all sporting codes. We agreed with the football Club that our away travel is probably one of the best value in the league but stated that additional fees should be per transaction and not per ticket and if per ticket should be included in the ticket/coach price rather than added.
Digital Season Tickets
Digital tickets were used for the first time at the recent “Meet the Players” event at Ashton Gate on Wednesday July 26th. We noted that it was good that the Football Club gave fans access to players, especially for younger fans. All digital tickets worked well on the day with 1,200 people gaining access.
The Club did acknowledge some problems once people were inside the ground with long waiting times to see players.
The Club will have ambassadors around Ashton Gate before matches to provide support and generally improve the digital access experience for fans, which we welcomed.
We fed back that it was welcomed that supporters had the choice of requesting a physical card which has had a take up of c. 30% which is high in comparison to other Clubs but considered that it should reduce as people become more comfortable with the electronic cards. It was noted that supporters couldn’t have both a physical and electronic card which may cause some confusion if not clearly communicated.
Supporters do still need to be advised of how to transfer digital tickets to family and friends.
Finally, in relation to the Fan Led Review we reminded the football club that we need to get ahead of any regulator imposed fan consultation process. Many of the issues discussed in this meeting might have been headed off by prior fan consultation.