Shrimps: We offer the best value we can

Morecambe FC offer the second cheapest day out in League 2 according to a BBC survey.
Morecambe FC offer the second cheapest day out in League 2 according to a BBC survey.
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A Saturday afternoon at the Globe Arena is value for money according to Morecambe FC’s commercial director.

The Shrimps offer the second cheapest day out in League 2 and boast the second cheapest match ticket, £14, according to the BBC’s Price of Football Survey.

Crowds numbers however have been disappointing since the Shrimps’ move to their new Westgate home in 2010.

But Mark Dixon believes the club are offering the best value they can, and that the figures don’t tell the whole story, with the cheapest ticket also including the admission of three under 14s free.

“We are very mindful that we’re not going through the best of times economically,” he said.

“We have to put a show on every week but we have expenses, the largest one being the players on the pitch.

“We’re not crying about it this is the industry we’re in.

“With the costs incurred and everything it takes to run this operation, £14 for an adult and up to three children is the best we can do.”

Mr Dixon said the club were always working to bring prices down but that plenty of factors affected how much cash supporters had to part with when they came through the turnstiles.

One of those included an increase on the 1,800 fans per home game budgeted for, something which could also ultimately lead to more money in manager Jim Bentley’s pocket.

“Do we want to get it better? Yes we do,” said Mr Dixon.

“But certain things will have to happen. Whether that’s a few more bodies coming through the gate, whether Jim (Bentley, Morecambe manager) does some good business on bringing players in at a slightly lesser cost, or whether that’s growing the business, the other side of the Globe Arena, the functions and the events.

“They all add together. It’s one big pot and it’s how that’s cut up.

“We’re looking at just over 1,800 as our average this year to balance the books, anything better than that is a bonus.

“That can manifest itself to Jim in terms of the opportunity to go into the loan market as he’s looking to at the moment.

“But as far as ticketing goes, I honestly believe we give good value for money.”

Overall, the club were pleased with the results of the BBC’s investigation, which found Accrington Stanley to be the cheapest day out and ticket in League 2.

“It’s something we’ve been conscious of all the way through our Football League experience and adventure,” said Mr Dixon.

“We’ve always been one of the least expensive, I won’t say cheap, it’s relative to what people can afford.

“But we are mindful of people’s disposable income as well as the calls on the parents of the families and what they’re doing at the weekend.

“It’s not just about being, ‘we’re Morecambe Football Club and they should be coming to support us’.

“We have to make it achievable and an experience, whether that be by putting fabulous samba football or making it price conscious.

“I think we hit the balance quite nicely.”