07:00PM, Friday 21 August 2020
Slough Town will hope to find out in the coming weeks how many supporters will be allowed into Arbour Park when the new season kicks off in early October.
Joint manager Neil Baker sees it as a positive that clubs from steps 3 and below will be able to admit fans from tomorrow (Saturday), after the Government updated its guidance on recreational team sport events this week.
Those clubs can initially fill grounds to 15 per cent rising to 30 per cent from August 30.
Teams in the National League and National Leagues North and South are still somewhat in the dark, however, whatever percentages the Government says clubs can safely accommodate, Baker believes revenue is likely to be down on previous years.
“How long is a piece of string,” he said. “I don’t think anyone knows and that’s why it’s been so difficult to be able to start selling season tickets. I’m surprised at the number of clubs who have been selling them. There are some clubs that might have sold more than 600 season tickets, but they might be limited to 500/600 people.
“We’ll just see where we are in a few weeks’ time. The club has worked hard and, whatever is sent our way, we’ll deal with it. If we are limited to 500/600 supporters, it might mean we can’t do season tickets this season. We might have to generate as much income as we can from those 600 people.
“The 30 per cent figure would be as a minimum capacity for our level, which is 1,900, so you’d be looking at 600 people,” added Baker.
“If that’s the case it’s a drop for us. I think our average last year was 887.
“That’s a loss for the club, and where you do cheaper deals, as a business, we might have to think about that because you can’t expect to run a club at this level with a 25 per cent deficit or even more than that. We’ll wait to be guided by the government, but from our point of view we’re excited about and looking forward to the new season.”
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