3. Agenda Items from FCC Members
3.1 Stadium Matters (Home)
JT asked FCC members for their comments/feedback on matchday atmosphere and whether the clapbanners should be retained.
– The clapbanners have lost their effectiveness because their novelty value has diminished.
– They are popular with children, could be used in the Family Stand, available for collection from a kiosk rather than placed on every seat.
– The clapbanners drown out the singing and the quality of the songs has subsequently dropped, as fans don’t learn the words .
– Away fans hate clapbanners
– The 2017-18 season clappers weren’t so loud (SJ: last season the clappers had 8 folds but 14 folds give the optimum sound.)
– Are the clappers recyclable? (SJ: they can only be recycled as a fuel because of the film coating. Removing the film would make them recyclable but less noisy.)
– Consider alternating face masks and clappers
– 2017-18 season saw less singing and less clappers being used; this could be attached to the performance on the pitch.
– The players enjoy the clappers and feel energised.
Show of hands: the majority want to keep the clappers
Additional comments/suggestions on Matchday Atmosphere
– Birch provides great encouragement on the pitch.
– The sound system at the stadium is very poor; there should be more encouragement over the PA system
– The Club should release the video of the fox, perhaps as a download in aid of Foxes Foundation
– In Italy and Spain, the clubs have people with microphones to lead the singing (JT: there is no regulation against this and Crystal Palace do it. SW: the Club worries that using the microphones could be seen as too contrived.)
– Put encouraging slogans on the LED’s.
– There is a risk that fans who don’t want to sing could be made to feel uncomfortable.
– There should be more pre-match education on what is acceptable and unacceptable, ie racism, LGBT-phobia.
– Create fanpark with seating, food, screens showing the early kick-off, camera booth, where fans could gather pre-match. This could also encourage home and away fans to mix.
– Screens could be used to educate fans, show highlights of games when the Club beat the visitors
– Fancam – for Safeguarding reasons, the Club must get permission before using footage. The Terms & Conditions state that by purchasing a ticket, the purchaser gives permission for their image to be included in photographic content. However, the Club should ensure that vulnerable groups are seated in a particular area to make sure they are not covered by the fancam.
The Club is helping the Premier League with its work on safe standing. Crowd management issues with safe standing could result in a more rigid scenario.
FCC members commented as follows:
– Fans in the East Stand stand any way
– It would be good if the Club could be a frontrunner in safe standing
– Standing in a seated area is not safe because it is easy to fall forward
– There are plenty of examples of safe standing around the world; these stadiums have been purpose-built to accommodate standing
Show of hands in favour of safe standing: 5/17
People not sitting in their designated seats
Q. Too many people don’t sit in their designated seats and the Club should take responsibility for ensuring that fans at away games sit in their correct seats.
A. It is the responsibility of the away club to manage their own stadium but the Club can communicate to LCFC fans travelling away, that they must sit in their own seats.
Q. Should the Club improve its stewarding of away fans?
A. The Club’s away end is the same as that of every other ground and has had a very good safety record.
Q. It’s difficult for friends to buy seats together.
A. The Club can only sell block by block if the game is going to be sold out. For away games, the away club dictates which blocks can be sold.
Q. The biggest problem of away games is stopping people from selling on their tickets, then people stand in the front rows blocking the view for others.
A. This is very difficult to manage. The only option is to make people collect their tickets pre-match in person; perhaps this could be implemented a few times a year.
Q. The Club is very good at sending marketing messages so it could use this media to send educational messages.
Q. Many of the people at games are drunk.
Q. What is the latest on official reselling?
A. Refunding is the big problem. The ticketing provider is confident the resale option can be delivered for next season as long as it meets the Club’s standards of data security.
Q. Would the Club consider using Apple Paypal for refunds?
A. The Club is looking into introducing Apple Paypal and Apple Wallet for the new Fanstore, as well as mobile ticketing for matches.
The Club is in the process of updating its Environmental Policy Statement to ensure it is working towards the requirements of ISO 14001 standard and aims to achieve this standard within three years. Since 1 January 2018, the Club has achieved a recycling rate of 94.5%. With new equipment and practices, the Club aims to achieve 98% for 2019.
Delays at Turnstiles, particularly in the Away section
The game against Sheffield United was the only instance last season which saw delays at the away turnstiles. This was caused by the very late arrival of the visiting fans. Fans should arrive in good time to allow for rigorous security searches; all grounds are conducting searches because of the heightened threat of terrorism.
Q. The stewards don’t conduct thorough searches – one FCC member cited an instance when her bag wasn’t properly searched.
A. JT asked her to email Jim Donnelly to discuss. Additionally, Leicestershire Police are reviewing the quality of searches
Organisation of Family Stand Checks
These are conducted on a random basis, depending upon games.
Q. A considerable number of games are moved from Saturday to mid-week evening games, meaning that season ticket holders in the Family Stand have a problem if they don’t want to bring their children to a late game. One FCC member has experienced problems with upgrading early in the season.
A. Season ticket holders in the Family Stand are allowed to upgrade 4 times per season. JD and JT will follow up.
Relocation of Burger Van in front of commemorative bricks
JD has already moved one. He will arrange for the electrics for the van to be relocated in the close season.
Wifi and Mobile Phone Signal
SC advised that the Club had been approached by two providers and discussions were underway.
Comments/Questions from FCC Members:
– The Club should block wifi on matchdays to boost the atmosphere.
– Would wifi create a problem for betting, by allowing information to be sent quicker than the broadcasts? Leicestershire Police said this was already a problem.
Show of hands – who would like 4G at the stadium on matchdays? 0/17
SW said this was an example of the invaluable feedback that comes from the FCC meetings.
3.2 Ticketing Matters
Matchday Ticket Prices
The Club will review the price of children’s tickets, for example the difference in price between tickets for 11- and 12-year olds. The Club is 11th in the Premier League Pricing Table.
Comments/questions from FCC members:
Q. There was no benefit this season in having a membership as several games went to general sale. Could members be given a discount?
A. The loyalty scheme gives members the possibility of becoming season ticket holders.
Q. Can we allow season ticket holders to buy additional tickets.
A. The Club doesn’t have the stadium capacity to do this.
The ability to see Friend and Family Priority Points
This option will be available from next season.
JD will investigate reports of problems viewing family members’ points.
Visibility of Seat Numbers on interactive map
Seat numbers SK4 are difficult to see on the interactive stadium map. The Club is trying to make the map more mobile friendly.
3.3 Football Matters
Andy King’s Testimonial
Andy King is still an LCFC player. If or when the time does come for him to leave, the Club will ask him and his family if he would like a testimonial.
U18 Season Ticket Holders are excluded from the Mascot Draw
The mascot draw was devised to add value to the membership scheme. It currently includes 7-11 year olds. The Club will extend this offering to season ticket holders in the 7- to 11 year age group.
Q. How many mascots are there each game?
A. There are 3 mascots (2 are paid for + 1 which is drawn). Sometimes all 3 mascots are special cases. Currently every 7- to 11-year old member is added into the mascot draw. There are now 500 children on the list for the paid-for spaces.
Electronic Matchday Magazine
The Club continues to monitor the matchday magazine and is looking at options. It’s difficult to stop people from sharing and cloning digital content.
Separating Pedestrians and Vehicles on Matchdays
Q. Could the Club rope off a safe walkway for pedestrians in front of the stadium to separate them from vehicles?
A. This was raised at the last game’s debrief session and the HO Security is reviewing.
JT thanked everyone for taking part in the meeting and for their invaluable feedback.
All FCC members will be invited to the next FCC meeting in six months’ time. Meanwhile there will be Your 90 Minutes on a monthly basis. Anyone wishing to attend should email Jim Donnelly on firstname.lastname@example.org
Fans – Alan Digby (Foxes Trust), Becky Taylor, Cliff Ginetta (Leicester City Supporters Club), Dinesh Prajapati, Dominic Palmer, Graeme Smith (Foxes Pride), Jack Munton (Union FS), Joshua Malam, Malcolm Carter, Nicholas Heard, Olusola Oni, Paul Angrave, Peter Wilson, Richard Smith, Samantha Guyler, Shaun Jackson
Leicestershire Police – Alistair Grimsley, Dave Stevens
LCFC – Susan Whelan (CEO), Mags Mernagh (Director, Estates & Infrastructure), Simon Capper (Finance Director), Jamie Tabor (Head of Bradn, Marketing & Digital Business), Jim Donnelly (Supporter Liaison & Disability Access Officer), Liam Docherty (CRM Manager), Stuart Johncock (Head of Supporter Engagement), Esther Walker (Executive Assistant to CEO)
Fans – Adrian Neal, Andrew Keates, Christine Graham, Claire Harrison, Naresh Patel, Sandra Fixter (Disability Support Association)
LCFC – Andrew Neville (Director of Football Operations), Anthony Herlihy (Director of Communications), Caroline McGrory (General Counsel), Jon Rudkin (Director of Football), Jonathan Gregory (Commercial Director), Kevin Barclay (Operations Director), Richard Lymbery (Operations Director, Levy Restaurants UK)
These Minutes were published by LCFC
This was the final article of a three part publication of the minutes, the earlier articles were published on Monday 2nd and Wednesday 4th of July
The Foxes Trust would like to express its appreciation to the club for the timely publication of the minutes