If the Arsenal hierarchy – Stan Kroenke, Ivan Gazidis, Arsene Wenger or who ever it is that are the main powerbrokers at the club – want further evidence that we are in an alarming decline on and off the pitch, perhaps they should consider a missive that has come my way.
It is from the head of one of our main supporters groups and it outlines the big drop in interest from Gooners travelling from this particular area to home games. I print it here but have withdrawn the identity of the supporters club.
All ********** Members
So far this season’s demand for trips has been extremely poor. Substantial loses have been made on the trips already run, with over £400 being lost on the Bolton trip this Saturday. As there are only 15 booked on for the Stoke trip, and just 10 for the WBA trip, I am expecting further substantial loses on both these trips. To try and ensure that future trips are economically viable I will have to significantly reduce the number of trips I intended to run this season. Hopefully by condensing the demand, the remaining trips will still go ahead and I will not have to disappoint those that have already booked by cancelling a trip. In addition, this should stop future financial loses and reduce the overall deficit that there will no doubt be in the ********** accounts at the end of this season.
Unfortunately, I will now not be able to run trips to:
Everton Sat 10 December
QPR sat 31 December
As already stated, the Fulham game on Sat 26 Nov is ticket only and so is the Wolves game on Boxing day.
I have applied for a limited number of tickets for these 4 games, so ‘tickets only’ are available: £37 members, £38 non-members.
This now means that there will be a 2 1/2 month gap between trips (WBA 5 Nov and Man Utd 21 Jan). I apologise for this lengthy gap, but there seems little point in trying to run so many trips when there is clearly not the demand from members. Moreover, the ********** can’t support the losses incurred. A few members have told me that they now ignore the booking deadline as they know that their applications will be successful, even when applying just a couple of weeks before the game. Although this view is almost certainly correct, it could be counter productive as I may, wrongly, assume that there is not the demand for a coach trip and therefore have to cancel it. To help me gauge the true demand for a trip, please could members ensure they have sent in their applications by the deadline day – or at least within a week of it passing.
As there are now only two trips being run between now and the end of January it is hoped that members will now want to go to either the Stoke trip (Sun 23 October 1:30 ) or WBA trip (Sat 5 Nov 3pm) . Please try and bring some guests if possible.
Hopefully, demand will start to pick-up for the second half of the season, but I will obviously have to review the situation if the demand is still very poor. It seems unlikely that we will run 15 trips this season so ABB+ members will receive an appropriate refund at the end of the season.
To reduce the loses for the Bolton trip I am offering ‘tickets only’ or, if preferred, tickets with coach travel. Please ask anyone you think may want tickets or coach travel. The loss for the Bolton trip is mainly due to the number of unsold tickets. Ticket cost are £36.
It’s indeed a sign of the times and a sad state of affairs. Another indication of the level of support for the team and the current regime will no doubt be the attendance for tonight’s Carling Cup home game against Shrewsbury. The club will not be able to massage the figures as they do for the majority of home games. Are we in crisis? Well, if we’re not, we ain’t far off. Tonight and Bolton at home are now crucial.