Newmarket Town enjoy big rise in crowds during 2019/20 season
Newmarket Town’s 2019/20 home league attendances were up by around 60 per cent from the previous season.
During the 2018/19 campaign, Newmarket averaged just 96 supporters through the gate for their Thurlow Nunn League Premier Division encounters.
Of those fixtures, they hit treble figures on only four occasions.
However, the now expunged season showed a marked improvement, with the average up to 159.
They surpassed the 200 mark twice and when league-leading Stowmarket Town visited the Tristel Stadium, the crowd was just 30 short of 500.
And even without that Stowmarket encounter, Newmarket’s average crowd for the term was 138.
Those figures are pleasing for chairman Kevin Grainger, who said: “There are a few reasons why things have improved numbers-wise this season.
“Firstly, the football on the pitch – people want to watch the team play at the moment.
“The lads were having a good season and were on a good run just before football was stopped.
“We are also an attractive place for away fans. They can come to games on the train and have a bit of a day out.
“We have also given out youth tickets, and they can bring a parent in with them.
“That was an idea we introduced earlier in the season and while that does not account for all of the figures, they are bringing their families with them, and it has helped massively.”
The challenge, now, is to ensure they first maintain those numbers, and then find ways to grow them further.
Grainger added: “Newmarket is not a football town – it is a racing town.
“A lot of staff at the yards are still riding out when our games are on.
“That means we have to come up with different ideas and we are trying to do that. With everything that is going on at the moment, we have to try to make sure these people come back.
“We have also done a lot of work on our facility, making it a nice place to be.”
More by this authorLiam Apicella