BST column: Trying to build Blackpool's fanbase for the future

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This article is written the morning after Tuesday’s grimly disappointing defeat at Cheltenham Town.

The law of football cliches will tell you that, with more than 40 points at stake, there is much to play for – but the top six and a play-off place is increasingly looking beyond us.

What success there could be this season is now very much around beating Peterborough United for a Wembley trip in the Bristol Street Motors Trophy.

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Whatever might be happening on the pitch, the bread and butter work of representing our members and the wider fanbase goes on.

BST remains committed in encouraging younger children to start supporting Blackpool FC Picture: Lee Parker/CameraSportBST remains committed in encouraging younger children to start supporting Blackpool FC Picture: Lee Parker/CameraSport
BST remains committed in encouraging younger children to start supporting Blackpool FC Picture: Lee Parker/CameraSport
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A milestone year for BST

We continue to concentrate a lot of our effort on encouraging younger children to commit their affections to the club.

For this reason, we continue to push the BST mascot sponsorship programme as hard as we can.

If that sounds like an endeavour you want to support financially, the best way of doing so is by subscribing to our 1953 Sweepstake.

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It costs from £5 per month to enter with 40 per cent of what we raise paid out in cash prizes.

The remainder is spent on the local good causes – like mascots – that we support.

Last year, this sweepstake was the main reason why we were able to donate more than £2,500 to the football club’s Festive Fundraiser.

You can find out more, and subscribe, by visiting:

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Another core aspect of what we do is try and ensure the views of our members, and the wider fanbase, are heard and acted upon by the club.

Football is an emotional business and, when things are not going well on the pitch, fans naturally look to vent their frustrations in whatever way they can.

In the last week or so, the club has met fan groups to discuss engagement and published their thoughts on how this should be managed.

For most fans, their view of how well the club is doing revolves around what they experience on matchdays.

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Increasingly, though, clubs have to face a different set of challenges from the football authorities.

The financial health of the game in England, and the manner in which clubs are run, are increasingly under the microscope.

One of the consequences of this is that Supporters Trusts, in particular, are increasingly asked to be knowledgeable about things like corporate governance and financial fair play.

Our aspiration at BST is to help the club reach a position where these areas of risk are well managed, to the point where they do not pose any threat to the club’s long-term health.

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Crucially though, they have to be managed in a way that keeps fans well informed of how the club is performing and gives them a meaningful say in how the club is being run.

We will be sharing our thoughts on the club’s proposals with them, and the wider fanbase, over the coming weekend.

Finally, we are always looking for ways to improve what we do, to build upon our skills and play our part – not just in the club but also the wider community.

If you have practical suggestions about things we might become involved in, or want to help us out, email: [email protected]