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Number 1 priority for improving matchday experience
Poll ended at Tue Feb 13, 2018 10:03 pm
Social media 13%  13%  [ 4 ]
Outside Catering 44%  44%  [ 14 ]
Bar 9%  9%  [ 3 ]
Stewarding 0%  0%  [ 0 ]
Car Parking 19%  19%  [ 6 ]
Retail 0%  0%  [ 0 ]
Online Ticketing 0%  0%  [ 0 ]
Match Day Programme 0%  0%  [ 0 ]
Other (please comment) 16%  16%  [ 5 ]
Total votes : 32
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 05, 2018 3:49 pm 
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divas wrote:
There is no doubt that the catering needs improving though and would add to the match day experience but I wouldn’t expect to be getting food for high street prices. I’d pay £3.50 as long as it was quality and represented value for money



Beware what you ask for...


Spennymoor fans complained about catering and quality of produce. club listened to the complaints and this season introduced new caterers ( Ramside Hall hotel) and much better quality products and then people complained that they had to pay more for better quality products!

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PostPosted: Mon Feb 05, 2018 3:59 pm 
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H1987 wrote:
It's a difficult balance for them, and the easiest way would be a freeview box and extra telly to watch Sky Sports news, but an extra sky box would be even better.

Sky sports news isn't on freeview?

Anyway, on the subject of catering, the pies are nice (fairly sure they are Taylors) although could often be hotter, and the price is probably consistent with other football grounds. My issue with the catering though is the very amateur set up. I know the rugby club are amateurs, but it doesn't reflect on them, it reflects on us, particularly to occasional fans and away fans. The hut by the tin shed is OK, but the trestle table by the clubhouse looks like something out of a village fair, and not the type of thing you'd expect at a semi-professional sports club with ambitions of professionalism.

It taps in with what I believe to be a wider issue, which is that there are some aspects in which DFC could look a bit more professional. When we're asking people to come and pay £14 to watch football, I think people expect a reasonably slick operation (certainly based on the times I've tried to get/have got friends to come to the game with me). Social media could look more professional. The car park and the access road after the game could be better organised. And the catering could come across more professional.

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PostPosted: Mon Feb 05, 2018 4:12 pm 
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al_quaker wrote:
H1987 wrote:
It's a difficult balance for them, and the easiest way would be a freeview box and extra telly to watch Sky Sports news, but an extra sky box would be even better.

Sky sports news isn't on freeview?

Anyway, on the subject of catering, the pies are nice (fairly sure they are Taylors) although could often be hotter, and the price is probably consistent with other football grounds. My issue with the catering though is the very amateur set up. I know the rugby club are amateurs, but it doesn't reflect on them, it reflects on us, particularly to occasional fans and away fans. The hut by the tin shed is OK, but the trestle table by the clubhouse looks like something out of a village fair, and not the type of thing you'd expect at a semi-professional sports club with ambitions of professionalism.

It taps in with what I believe to be a wider issue, which is that there are some aspects in which DFC could look a bit more professional. When we're asking people to come and pay £14 to watch football, I think people expect a reasonably slick operation (certainly based on the times I've tried to get/have got friends to come to the game with me). Social media could look more professional. The car park and the access road after the game could be better organised. And the catering could come across more professional.


Is it not? It did used to be, it must just be basic cable subscriptions that get it now? Anyway, you could put the BBC on. Something to show the scores and it'd minimise conflict.

Agree with the latter point. They really need to replicate the hut at the other end of the ground.


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 05, 2018 4:25 pm 
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Used to be, but I think it got taken off years ago!

What's on in the bar doesn't really bother me, although I do think from DRFC's point of view, it'd probably be a decent business move to try and cater a little bit more to DFC fans

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PostPosted: Mon Feb 05, 2018 4:43 pm 
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No, it's not in freeview. Perhaps the hut might follow the new stand. I suppose in our financial situation we need to prioritise all the time. The new workflows, the information being shared here and the forum on 20th will hopefully lead to improvements. At the moment I think seats has it over pies. Long ago I used to watch south Liverpool play in a proper ground now they play in a field surrounded by a railing. We could have ended up there but we're discussing pies instead!


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 05, 2018 4:55 pm 
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don'tbuythesun wrote:
No, it's not in freeview. Perhaps the hut might follow the new stand. I suppose in our financial situation we need to prioritise all the time. The new workflows, the information being shared here and the forum on 20th will hopefully lead to improvements. At the moment I think seats has it over pies. Long ago I used to watch south Liverpool play in a proper ground now they play in a field surrounded by a railing. We could have ended up there but we're discussing pies instead!

To be fair, I think everyone knows that seats/improving views is a much higher priority than anything else, pies included. But that's expensive, a long term project, and also up in the air with this sports hub proposal. But just because catering etc isn't the absolute number 1, it doesn't mean we/the club shouldn't be trying to improve the things it can improve quickly and relatively easily!

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PostPosted: Mon Feb 05, 2018 5:23 pm 
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I agree, it's the little, easy to change stuff that can make a difference. I think I this thread is a great start.


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 05, 2018 6:33 pm 
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spen666 wrote:
divas wrote:
There is no doubt that the catering needs improving though and would add to the match day experience but I wouldn’t expect to be getting food for high street prices. I’d pay £3.50 as long as it was quality and represented value for money



Beware what you ask for...


Spennymoor fans complained about catering and quality of produce. club listened to the complaints and this season introduced new caterers ( Ramside Hall hotel) and much better quality products and then people complained that they had to pay more for better quality products!


But we aren't Spennymoor are we?

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PostPosted: Mon Feb 05, 2018 7:43 pm 
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Quakerz wrote:
spen666 wrote:
divas wrote:
There is no doubt that the catering needs improving though and would add to the match day experience but I wouldn’t expect to be getting food for high street prices. I’d pay £3.50 as long as it was quality and represented value for money



Beware what you ask for...


Spennymoor fans complained about catering and quality of produce. club listened to the complaints and this season introduced new caterers ( Ramside Hall hotel) and much better quality products and then people complained that they had to pay more for better quality products!


But we aren't Spennymoor are we?


No one suggested that you are, but no sensible person would think Darlington are going to provide better quality products without increasing the price to reflect the increased costs of obtaining those products. Then people would complain about the prices as being too high.

If you would rather try to turn it into an anti Spennymoor issue than help your club, then so be it. You are not helping your club

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PostPosted: Tue Feb 06, 2018 8:05 am 
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spen666 wrote:
Quakerz wrote:
spen666 wrote:
divas wrote:
There is no doubt that the catering needs improving though and would add to the match day experience but I wouldn’t expect to be getting food for high street prices. I’d pay £3.50 as long as it was quality and represented value for money



Beware what you ask for...


Spennymoor fans complained about catering and quality of produce. club listened to the complaints and this season introduced new caterers ( Ramside Hall hotel) and much better quality products and then people complained that they had to pay more for better quality products!


But we aren't Spennymoor are we?


No one suggested that you are, but no sensible person would think Darlington are going to provide better quality products without increasing the price to reflect the increased costs of obtaining those products. Then people would complain about the prices as being too high.

If you would rather try to turn it into an anti Spennymoor issue than help your club, then so be it. You are not helping your club
Fuck off Spen

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PostPosted: Tue Feb 06, 2018 11:32 am 
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The Equalizer wrote:
spen666 wrote:
Quakerz wrote:
spen666 wrote:
divas wrote:
There is no doubt that the catering needs improving though and would add to the match day experience but I wouldn’t expect to be getting food for high street prices. I’d pay £3.50 as long as it was quality and represented value for money



Beware what you ask for...


Spennymoor fans complained about catering and quality of produce. club listened to the complaints and this season introduced new caterers ( Ramside Hall hotel) and much better quality products and then people complained that they had to pay more for better quality products!


But we aren't Spennymoor are we?


No one suggested that you are, but no sensible person would think Darlington are going to provide better quality products without increasing the price to reflect the increased costs of obtaining those products. Then people would complain about the prices as being too high.

If you would rather try to turn it into an anti Spennymoor issue than help your club, then so be it. You are not helping your club
Fuck off Spen

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Who can compete with such brain power and intelligence?

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PostPosted: Tue Feb 06, 2018 12:10 pm 
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spen666 wrote:
Who can compete with such brain power and intelligence?


sweet sweet irony


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 06, 2018 2:23 pm 
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al_quaker wrote:
don'tbuythesun wrote:
No, it's not in freeview. Perhaps the hut might follow the new stand. I suppose in our financial situation we need to prioritise all the time. The new workflows, the information being shared here and the forum on 20th will hopefully lead to improvements. At the moment I think seats has it over pies. Long ago I used to watch south Liverpool play in a proper ground now they play in a field surrounded by a railing. We could have ended up there but we're discussing pies instead!

To be fair, I think everyone knows that seats/improving views is a much higher priority than anything else, pies included. But that's expensive, a long term project, and also up in the air with this sports hub proposal. But just because catering etc isn't the absolute number 1, it doesn't mean we/the club shouldn't be trying to improve the things it can improve quickly and relatively easily!


Aye, it's good to see the club engaged with this sort of thing. I'd have something covered at the other end as the next priority. Even if it starts small, and is expandable, and crucially is movable should we move elsewhere (which i think is very unlikely, to be honest). It might help with the atmosphere as well, whether it's away fans making some noise in it, or our lot going behind the goal.

Little bits can help the match day experience though, and can cost very little. Views are most important, but if other stuff helps floating fans enjoy their day, then they have to be a good thing. Having a welcoming bar that shows football with decent beer seems a good idea to me, especially if the club take even a small cut of it. Likewise, if people want better scran (personally as i say, i don't bother but clearly some do) then it's worth listening, even if we don't make a huge amount of money from them, but makes peoples day more enjoyable, thus making them more likely to come back.

While what away fans think is a relatively unimportant concern, it's not great if you look at things like ground review websites, and you see people bashing the club for amateur provisions and terrible views. Personally, i'd be thinking twice about going to a game if i knew all we were going to get was uncovered, hard standing and no access to facilities. There can't really be anywhere worse than what we offer in the division right now.


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 06, 2018 2:44 pm 
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I agree if something is a quick win and cheap and cheerful then no risk to doing it, as long as there is the resource to carry it out and it isn't being pulled from other things. Just don't expect it to have a material difference on the experience for the vast majority.

I kind of want to just see this season out at the moment. Start again next season with a ground which is eligible for promotion and budget a team which can hopefully compete for them.

I am quite excited about that next development down that end of the ground. Once we have four sides of the ground with stands will those saying it doesn't feel like a proper ground be happier...


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 06, 2018 3:18 pm 
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lo36789 wrote:

I am quite excited about that next development down that end of the ground. Once we have four sides of the ground with stands will those saying it doesn't feel like a proper ground be happier...

Happier yes. Even the extension to the existing seated stand makes it look a bit more like a proper ground.

However, I doubt I'll truly ever love BM as a place to watch football (unless the clubhouse is knocked down and a proper stand is built in it's place) - even when a stand behind the goal is put up, it will still be pretty open, with about half of the ground being flat standing and with no real height in the other areas, but it is what it is and we've got to try and make the best of what we've got.

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PostPosted: Tue Feb 06, 2018 4:02 pm 
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It can't feel like a proper football ground, whilst the touchlines behind the goals, are about 15 feet from where you can stand. Unfortunately whilst we are at BM this problem is impossible to resolve.


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 06, 2018 4:55 pm 
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spen666 wrote:

Who can compete with such brain power and intelligence?


What he meant was - just because Spennymoor fans complained about increased prices for a better quality product - that doesn't mean that Darlo fans will.

As I said "We aren't Spennymoor, are we?"

You are projecting your own clubs fan's general fickleness and bandwagon-jumping wankyness onto Darlo fans.

We put up with a gate price increase to £14 with barely a peep. Don't assume our fans are like yours.

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PostPosted: Tue Feb 06, 2018 4:57 pm 
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Darlo_Pete wrote:
It can't feel like a proper football ground, whilst the touchlines behind the goals, are about 15 feet from where you can stand. Unfortunately whilst we are at BM this problem is impossible to resolve.


If the problem is impossible to resolve, then shut up because moaning about it won't do any good.

Also, other clubs share with rugby clubs and will have exactly the same problem.

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PostPosted: Tue Feb 06, 2018 5:07 pm 
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Run off areas probably don't seem so bad with some height. The Tin Shed, while not ideal, feels better than the open end (unless it actually is bigger that end?), and the goals at the Arena were probably just as far away but the height made it feel OK.

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PostPosted: Tue Feb 06, 2018 9:09 pm 
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Darlo_Pete wrote:
It can't feel like a proper football ground, whilst the touchlines behind the goals, are about 15 feet from where you can stand. Unfortunately whilst we are at BM this problem is impossible to resolve.


Is it really that far? I am watching the Swansea game and the run off from the goal line to the stand looks bigger in this game?

As is said above it just feels like it needs some structure and just a bit of height. The tin shed end looks the part on the video.


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 06, 2018 9:15 pm 
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It looks around that to me, but I could be wrong, it wouldn't be the first time.


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 16, 2018 10:13 pm 
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Many thanks to those who took time to complete the survey. A report has been posted to the Official web-site highlighting the key results. Thanks once again.


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 16, 2018 10:25 pm 
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spen666 wrote:
divas wrote:
There is no doubt that the catering needs improving though and would add to the match day experience but I wouldn’t expect to be getting food for high street prices. I’d pay £3.50 as long as it was quality and represented value for money



Beware what you ask for...


Spennymoor fans complained about catering and quality of produce. club listened to the complaints and this season introduced new caterers ( Ramside Hall hotel) and much better quality products and then people complained that they had to pay more for better quality products!


Thanks for your specific comment about catering. The short answer is we don't at present have full evidence of what our fans expect from catering. We would need more survey evidence although the comments on various platforms for this match-day experience poll have been useful. I'm not inclined to translate the experiences of one club to another as it is a different survey population and we can't assume they are comparable. Nonetheless, interesting to hear about the Spennymoor experience. Value is key but that is driven by the customer. This specific poll was designed to highlight issues rather than necessarily explain them.


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 17, 2018 12:05 pm 
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wizardofos wrote:
For me the main obstacle to an all round decent day is getting out of the car park.
I've learned to live with the relatively modest delay but, as we know, Jekylls become Hydes (or is it the other way round) when at the wheel of a car and I see lots (and I mean lots) of angry and frustrated people who may be disinclined to return.
My understanding was that there was going to be an exit from the car park onto Grange Road in the original scheme, which was presumably sacrificed for financial reasons. I'm also under the impression, rightly or wrongly, that this was something the Rugby Club were responsible for. I wonder if it will ever happen.
The current one way in and one way out arrangement was painfully exposed at the York game when the car park became full (to the exclusion of some parking season ticket holders, including me, at around 2:15). Vehicles were then trying to get in and out at the same time. This is what will happen whenever there is a good crowd and the Club is, understandably, keen to sell the extra spaces in the car park not taken up by season ticket holders.

We were told in a fans forum that more space on grass would be provided if and when needed, however this would need one steward on the spot to be in control of opening a new area. This doesnt seem too hard to organise.


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 17, 2018 12:08 pm 
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Taylors pies were "promised" at a fans forum, but like the dedicated marquee bar never happened.


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 17, 2018 12:12 pm 
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Neil Johnson wrote:
Taylors pies were "promised" at a fans forum, but like the dedicated marquee bar never happened.

They are Taylors, at least according to the rugby club staff serving the food

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PostPosted: Sat Feb 17, 2018 12:46 pm 
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al_quaker wrote:
Neil Johnson wrote:
Taylors pies were "promised" at a fans forum, but like the dedicated marquee bar never happened.

They are Taylors, at least according to the rugby club staff serving the food


Yes I think they are Taylors too - seem to be hotter when sourced from the Tin Shed pie outlet (Hut).

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PostPosted: Sat Feb 17, 2018 1:00 pm 
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DFC_ Supp_Liaison wrote:
Many thanks to those who took time to complete the survey. A report has been posted to the Official web-site highlighting the key results. Thanks once again.

Good starting point for future discussion and improvements.
I suppose there will be some demands for side terracing, but I suppose squad improvements and eventual stands would be higher club priorities.


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 17, 2018 1:01 pm 
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theoriginalfatcat wrote:
al_quaker wrote:
Neil Johnson wrote:
Taylors pies were "promised" at a fans forum, but like the dedicated marquee bar never happened.

They are Taylors, at least according to the rugby club staff serving the food


Yes I think they are Taylors too - seem to be hotter when sourced from the Tin Shed pie outlet (Hut).

none when I have asked at half times at the Tin Shed corner.


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 17, 2018 1:25 pm 
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Ah, sold out then - due to their tastiness.

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