Trust STFC formally approached Swindon Town regarding the decision to charge non season ticket holders full price for the return of Bristol Rovers to the County Ground and urged the club to offer a £10 reduced rate ticket.

This was guided by email-driven feedback and a poll of over 400 people, the results of which suggested 60 percent of supporters thought paying around half price for a new ticket was acceptable.

It is therefore regrettable that the subsequent press release by chairman Lee Power on Wednesday afternoon confirmed that the club’s position had not changed.

Although we acknowledge that Swindon Town have conformed to all EFL requirements and are not in breach of any regulations, we are disappointed that middle ground could not be offered to the affected supporters of both Swindon Town and Bristol Rovers who had attended the initial match.

Swindon Town general manager Steve Anderson responded to the Trust with a personal phone call on behalf of the club to clarify the reasons behind the full-price ticket offering and made it clear that this was the only sustainable option, given the increased stewarding and policing costs incurred by a local derby midweek fixture, along with regular staffing costs and other complexities such as the cost of meals for hospitality season ticket holders which would also need to be covered as part of the current catering contract.

The Trust acknowledges the financial difficulty placed on the club by circumstances such as those experienced on Saturday and does not wish to see the club routinely spend beyond its means.
We also sympathise with the need to fund a second wave of costs for the re-arranged fixture. We do feel, however, that with a more transparent discussion around the topic a compromise might have been reached which is equally fair to both club and fans.

Finally, it’s worth noting that the Trust has worked with Swindon Town, alongside North Wilts Youth Football League and STFC Football In The Community, to bring lower cost ticket options to supporters. The recently launched Pro Red scheme enables parents of Wiltshire based Schoolchildren and Youth footballers to get £15 tickets to any Swindon Town home match (including the Bristol Rovers match), thus encouraging more familes along to the County Ground.

If you’re the parent of a youngster, please take a look at the registration site and sign your family up: www.pro-red.co.uk