Published: 06:00, 29 June 2021
The countdown is on for the return of non-league football with the new season just weeks away.
Kent clubs are reporting a brisk take-up in season tickets this summer as supporters look forward to returning to grounds after many hardly got to see their team kick a ball ‘live’ last year.
Season tickets usually represent good value for supporters who intend to watch every home game for their team, with an overall saving on admission. They also provide valuable income to clubs during the summer months when bills still need to be paid.
There are a couple of stand-out prices available to fans this year, including Ebbsfleet United who are marking their 75th anniversary season with an offer of just £175 for adults to watch their 20 home league games.
Ebbsfleet chief executive Damian Irvine said: “We’ve had a really good response.
“We rolled over the last year’s season tickets to the new season, due to the limited amount of football that was played, so every season ticket that we’ve sold at the 75th anniversary price has been effectively a new supporter, who didn’t have a season ticket last year."
As for the reasons behind interest in the club, Fleet believe there are a number of factors involved.
“We’re still under new management with Dennis Kutrieb really and there’s a lot of excitement around the squad that we’ve put together," said Irvine.
“There are new residents locally and also some who used to commute to the big clubs in London but have said that at the price we’ve offered it, that it’s an easy decision to jump on and support their local club.
“With everything that has happened in the last 12 months, they wanted to support their local team. It’s been exactly the response that we wanted.”
You'll need to be quick to get the cheapest price at some clubs, with early bird offers ending in the coming days.
Isthmian League Margate have also cut prices to mark its 125th birthday. The club takes great pride in being a part of the local community and its long, prestigious history is something those associated with Hartsdown Park are incredibly proud of, especially after two tough, unprecedented seasons.
After a difficult few years for non-league football, Margate hope to welcome loyal supporters back as well as entice locals who fancy finding out a little more about their local side which a reduced season ticket offer.
To mark the return of supporters and a big birthday, Margate are selling season tickets at their lowest price in years at just £125 for adults.
General manager Deny Wilson said: "We are counting down the days until August 14 when we can welcome fans back to see our team in action again.
"It's been a very long wait, October feels like a lifetime ago but it means this new season truly feels like a fresh start.
"We've got our famous kits to wear, a special season ticket offer and 125 years of footballing heritage to celebrate.
"Our supporters have been fantastic over the past couple of years and those across the local community have really helped play a part in keeping us going.
"With the exciting news of our stadium redevelopment plans being approved, there is a great buzz around the place. Jay Saunders is assembling a talented squad and when you combine these things together, there is no better time to visit Margate or invest in a season ticket!"
Whites have frozen their prices for the 2021/22 season – for both season tickets and general admission.
For 22 home National League games, adult season tickets are £315 for adults which is £14.32 per match. That price rises to £340 after the early bird window closes on July 4.
Concession prices for over-60s are £255, rising to £280 while under-18 season tickets represent great value at just £50 with under-11s getting in free at Crabble alongside a paying adult.
Matchday admission remains £18 for adults, £15 for over-60s and £9 for under-18s.
NATIONAL LEAGUE SOUTH
The Darts have frozen their season ticket prices for a third season. They’re also offering fans who had season tickets last season a discount of 50 per cent off the new prices.
For 20 home National League South matches, adult season tickets are £210 which is £10.50 per game. That price rises to £240 after the early bird window closes after June 30.
Early bird concession prices are £140 and just £30 for over-80s. Youth season tickets for those aged 13-17 are £70 and Junior Darts season tickets are only £42.
Matchday admission will be £15 for adults, £10 for concessions, £5 for youths (13-17) and £2 for juniors (5-12).
Ebbsfleet United are offering their lowest prices for nearly 20 years as they mark the club’s 75th anniversary season.
In a one-off celebration, season tickets will be £175 for adults and concessions and £75 for juniors, with under-12s accompanied by an adult at just £20. That works out at just £8.75 per game for adults.
Matchday admission has also been frozen at £15 for adults, £12 for concessions, £7 for juniors and £1 for under-12s. Fleet also offer a family ticket of two adults and two juniors for £35 and one adult and one junior for £20.
Maidstone have kept their 2019/20 prices so adults season tickets come in at £250, which works out at £12.50 per game. That price increases to £295 for a seat in the main stand. For concessions it is £200 for terrace and £250 for seating. Youth (11-160 is £115 and £165 respectively, and under-11s is £40 for terrace and £80 for seating. An online fee of £5 also applies.
Tonbridge season tickets are £231 for adults, which works out at £11.55 per game although there is also an online booking fee of £10.50. Concession season tickets are £165, youth (12-17) are £83 and juniors under-12s are free, although they are only admitted if with an adult.
Matchday admission can be purchased online with savings of less than £1 in each instance due to booking fees. On the gate prices will be £15 for adults, £11 for concessions, £6 for youth (12-17) and free for under-12s when accompanied by an adult.
The Wings are yet to announce any further information than their early bird prices. Adult admission is £195 which works out at less than £10 per game, but that rises to £230 for seating areas. Concessions are £135 for terrace and £165 for seating. Juniors (11-16) are £70 and £100 respectively.
Invicta will play 21 home games in the Isthmian Premier with early bird prices available until July 14. Adults season tickets are £180, which is £8.57 per match, while concessions are £110. Those prices rise to £200 and £120 once the early bird offer expires. Folkestone have operated a junior passport scheme for a number of seasons now which gives free admission to anyone aged 18 and under.
Matchday prices will be £11 for adults and £8 for concessions.
Margate are another Kent club marking an anniversary as they reach the 125-year mark. To celebrate, adult season tickets for the new season are priced at just £125 for adults – that’s a mind-blowing £5.95 per game! Concession prices are £90 and young person (11-17) are just £50.
Those prices rise to £190, £140 and £65 when the season gets under way on August 14 while NHS staff will again be granted free access to league games, with dedicated fixtures extending that complimentary offering to all services.
Margate season ticket holders from the 2020/21 season will be given a free season ticket for the new campaign.
ISTHMIAN SOUTH EAST
For 19 home games in Isthmian South East, Herne Bay’s season tickets are on sale at early bird prices. They are £110 for adults (£5.79 per game), £70 for concessions and £40 for juniors.
Season ticket holders from 2020/21 will be allowed to be used in the new season. New season tickets are available for adults at £140, £70 for concessions and £35 for youngsters aged 11-17. Under-11s are admitted free when accompanied by an adult.
Whitstable’s season tickets also include entry to pre-season fixtures. They’re on sale now – priced £150 for adults and £80 for concessions.