King's Lynn Town increase National League admission prices for 2021/22 in light of Coronavirus pandemic
King's Lynn Town has announced an increase in matchday admission prices, which the club says is necessary because of the financial impact of the coronavirus pandemic.
Fans will be asked to pay an extra £1 per match in order to help The Walks outfit repay loans worth more than £500,000 which the club took out during the last, crisis-hit, National League campaign.
The announcement, which does not affect prices for under-16s, comes ahead of the release of the new season's fixture programme tomorrow.
A statement on the club's website this afternoon said: "The club is looking forward to welcoming fans back to The Walks and would like to thank all of our fans for their help and generosity in helping us get through the most testing of seasons.
"We are mindful that COVID has had a financial impact for many supporters and we have to balance this with the huge financial demands that running a full time football club entails.
"The club had no choice but to take out a bounce back loan of £50,000 and a huge loan of nearly £500,000 to enable the club to complete last season.
"We found ourselves boxed in an impossible position and it is important that we do not bury our heads in the sand and pretend that the events did not happen but instead find a way to keep a competitive team on the pitch and the show on the road off it.
"We have looked at season ticket prices and as promised we have frozen all the prices from last year and we have reduced the Under-16 season ticket to £40 which we hope will go some way to helping families find a way through these difficult times.
"Sadly due to abuse we had to stop selling match day tickets last season to students but we do have a reduced price season ticket available to all students and you will need to bring your student ID with you when you pick up the same.
"Students on our course at KES will be given a complimentary season ticket.
"Those buying season tickets must understand that if the club is put into another lockdown situation then a stream will be provided to compensate and if a programme is produced this will be sent on a complimentary basis to keep you up to date with events at the club.
"We are grateful that nearly all of our season ticket holders helped the club by doing this last season as otherwise we would simply be plunged into financial turmoil and whilst we hope and pray that this situation never happens again we need to be upfront about it so fans know where they stand.
"For the avoidance of doubt if you are not able to accept the stream and programme in lieu of your ticket then you should not buy a season ticket.
"Matchday admission prices have been increased in all sectors by £1 (other than under 16’s tickets which remain the same price).
"We are asking for this £1 donation so that we can start to repay our loans, we will report during the season how much has been raised with this innovation and confirm any loans repaid and the balance of monies held by the club specifically for reducing debt.
"This £1 has not been added to season ticket prices with the result that they are better value than before."
The club have also announced a number of operational changes with pre-season preparations in full swing.
Most notably, Mark Hearle has stepped down as commercial manager and taken up a new role as head of operations. He will also act as the club's new programme editor."
The statement added: "Steve Curtis, our groundsman, has retired and we thank him for his years of service and TH Ground Services will look after the pitch for the time being.
"Head honcho Tim Hales and his team brings with them years of experience in pitch care.
"Other staff at the club have become full-time, including Ben Alger in Sports Science."
The club have also appealed to fans to support the club's opening pre-season friendly at home to League One MK Dons next Tuesday.
The club said: "Whilst Norwich tickets sales are going well, we really need your support for the MK Dons game.
"The game itself kicks off at 7pm will consist of four 30 minute halves so that potential new players can be looked at and the managers can get more game time into their players.
"Your support is invaluable as pre-season is a lifeline for clubs, so please do buy a ticket online today."