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The Mail Bag

Ticket office fiasco Number 536

Comments (30)

When the details of the Cup Final Tickets where published, my 82-year-old father-in-law (yes, that's 82), season-ticket holder since Tommy Lawton's days, applied on-line for a ticket (yes, he is on-line... at 82). Now he hadn't been to any cup matches this season except the semi-final, so imagine his surprise and delight when he was e.mailed saying he had a ticket.

So yesterday my 82-year-old father-in-law, he's 82, troupes down to Goodison whistling "We shall not be moved" and generally in high spirits. Queue's up, gets to the front, produces his documents only to be told (and here's the bit we've all been waiting for), "Sorry, sir there's been a mix up and you are not entitled to a ticket."

Three suits appear from the back with the official explanation of, "We contracted the distribution of tickets out and the other company has made a mess of things, you're not the first and you won't be the last, don't blame us." Now my 82-year-old father-in-law, that's 82 in case you missed it, is quite a placid person and ? after arguing the toss for 5 minutes ? left ticketless.

however, a bloke at the next window who had obviously been told the same info, wasn't quite as philosophical, and was trying to rip the grill off the front of the cubicle with the normal "People's Club. my fucking arse!", then threatened to cancelled his season ticket. My 82-year-old father-in-law left before the other guy was (a) given a ticket, or (b) carried away by four burly security guards kicking and screaming.

Now correct me if I'm wrong but, taking out season tickets, don't Everton Football Club have facilities to sell over 20,000 tickets once or twice a month for home match's as well as away games etc? Which begs the questions, why the hell are we paying another company to distribute our tickets? Why the hell wasn't my 82-year-old father-in-law re-emailed with an apology before he made the trip down to Goodison? And why the hell have Everton FC not replied to the e.mail he sent them yesterday complaining?

Just one more story of the wonderful "People's Club" we all love and cherish.
Kevin Jones, Parbold     Posted 21/05/2009 at 06:41:59

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Joe Barnes
1   Posted 21/05/2009 at 14:13:50

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Why did you even mention he is 82, what’s that got to do with anything? The criteria is on how many FA cup games you have been to this season, not age or previous seasons or anything else. He tried his luck at getting a ticket with an e-mail and failed because someone else who does meet the criteria is having ’his’ ticket instead.

It would be unfair if someone had been to three or four cup games and is rejected by the club because someone who is older than him who had been to one game (which doesn’t even count) wanted one!
Jamie Barlow
2   Posted 21/05/2009 at 14:42:39

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To be a season ticket holder for that long and not get a final ticket is a joke, and how old did you say he was?
Kevin Hudson
3   Posted 21/05/2009 at 14:52:41

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How old is he again?
Tony Williams
4   Posted 21/05/2009 at 14:51:05

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I know I shouldn’t but I was laughing evry time you mentioned his age, it was like the Spitting Image sketch with the Queen Mum, "I’m 82 don’tcha know?"

Yes it is a cock, yes your father in law deserves an apology but unless EvertonFC have a complaint how are they meant to respond. If a complain has been entered, it was only done so yesterday.

Me and my mates picked up our tickets testerday but we are still waiting for the confirmation e-mail, we got the info from the e-ticketing site.

There was a mistake by the looks of it, did you expect anything else?
Sean Allinson
5   Posted 21/05/2009 at 14:52:43

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Joe, you are a poor human being. It takes considerable effort to get to the ticket office and queue at the age of 82. The one person who was not to blame for this mistake was the father-in-law himself, and if holding a season ticket through almost 70 years of thick and thin isn’t deserving of a Cup Final ticket, I don’t know what is. Shoddy public relations yet agin.

You don’t work for the ’People’s’ Club do you by any chance Joe?
Joeynkoo Ludden
6   Posted 21/05/2009 at 15:16:34

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Joe Barnes has been on a one man mission for last few days on here.

I like the fact that the 82 year old fella is still going the game, My pops, 84 and former season ticket holder, gave up years ago... "they’ll always let you down in the end" he says.. hehehe
Mike Dishome
7   Posted 21/05/2009 at 14:51:37

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Joe I think you might be mising the point Kevin is making.

It is not about whether his father-in-law, who is 83 next year by the way, qualifies for a ticket. It is the way the club communicated one thing, thereby raising expectations and creating the probably non too easy journey to GP and then to pass the buck to a company they commissioned to do the work in hte first place.

Your story has got me wondering though Kevin about the way the club could show their appreciation for a lifetime of support.

I wonder how many season ticket holders have had their STs for more than 25 years, 30 years or even longer. The longest serving 50 STHs could have been offered a free Wembly VIP experience, ticket wine and dine etc. It might go some way to balance the sight of Chelsea pensioners that I am sure will be part of the day for Chelsea, at least ours will be true blues.

Oh and in case anyone was thinking it, I have no ST nor am I in my 80’s.

Kevin Jones
8   Posted 21/05/2009 at 15:09:05

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Jamie & Kevin, he’s 82 you know.

Hi Joe

I’m not moaning about the fact he’s not entitled to a ticket, I’m moaning about him being told you’ve got a ticket then having it taken away. I put the fact he’s 82 in for comic effect. He realised he probably wouldn’t be entitled to a ticket and was cockahoop, ( which isn’t easy at 82 ), when he got the e-mail. Like any Evertonian who’s after a ticket he thought strange but hey ho happy days and turned up.
Chris Briddon
9   Posted 21/05/2009 at 15:39:40

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I’m sorry Sean but I am not sure why someone who has been a season ticket holder for 70 years is any more deserving than those who have qualified for a ticket.

I used to be a season ticket holder and went to all home and about 10 away a season for a few years (before wife & kids came along!) does that mean I deserve one too!

I sympathise with this issue but the rules were set out clearly from the outset, so if you got an e-mail advising you had a ticket with only 1 extra credit, I would have been immediately suspicious!
Chris Taggart
10   Posted 21/05/2009 at 15:47:34

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I?m sorry. Your dad applied when he didn?t meet the criteria, and thefore should not have been supprised when at the point of sale he was declined a ticket regardless of the e-mail received. Is it poor admin? Yes, but could have been avoided if those who weren't initially eligible didn't apply.

It's a bit like me calling the lotto at 8pm on Saturday saying I?ve got all 6 numbers and when I trip up to head office on the Monday presenting my non-winning ticket and being all shocked when they don't hand me a cheque for £7 million.

I?m 35 you know.
Kevin Hudson
11   Posted 21/05/2009 at 15:48:09

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Kevin

Sorry for having a little fun with you ! The constant references to his age cracked me up !

Your story though does present a image of ( an incompetent ) corporate side of things which is pretty soulless, and clearly dissapointing for your old man in-law.

To be honest, I’m gutted for the guy. I hope you can sort out something special for him on the day. If we have to wait another 14 years for a cup final, he’ll be 97, and it would be wonderful if the club could make special dispensation for such a life long devoted follower; It would be a classy and respectful touch....

Regards
Kevin Jones
12   Posted 21/05/2009 at 16:24:40

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Hi Kevin Don’t worry I didn’t take any offence. I put the age in constantly for a laugh, which obviously worked in your case . Bill, father in law 82, doesn’t and never has expected anything from the Club, as he says, which I suppose is right, they don’t force me to go the match. I go because I love football and Everton are my team. He’s renewed for next year and has said "as long as I’m able, I’ll go the game".
Ian Doyle
13   Posted 21/05/2009 at 17:32:21

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Why doesn't the semi-final count as one? ? it's a cup match.
Anthony Fielding
14   Posted 21/05/2009 at 17:24:41

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How come he hasn't got a ticket??? The official site says any season ticket holder with one or more extra games this season are guaranteed a final ticket, didn't you say he went to the semi-final???
Dennis Stevens
15   Posted 21/05/2009 at 18:00:56

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Although this incident (and many like it) show how far our club needs to progress if it?s going to maximise commercial opportunities, we shouldn?t lose sight of the fact that the root cause of so many blues being disappointed is not the club but the FA. Hundreds of millions of pounds squandered on a stadium that?s arguably in the wrong location, certainly isn?t big enough & almost half of the tickets are not offered to supporters of the two clubs competing in the Final. The FA creates & supplies a black market for touts to profiteer & then they wring their hands in dismay. They only thing they have right is their name ? that?s about all they?re worth to genuine supporters!
Sean Allinson
16   Posted 21/05/2009 at 18:25:48

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Chris Briddon, you stopped going, after having been a match goer for a few years, and you ask if you deserve a ticket as much as an 82-year-old (yes, an 82-year-old!) who has been going and continues to go after 70 years?

Err, no you don?t.... Rocket surgery!
Chris Taggart
17   Posted 21/05/2009 at 19:45:52

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Anthony, I think the guy applied when he didn't meet the STH+3 games criteria, it was only after all those tickets were allocated did the club announce the further criteria.
Jon J Cox
18   Posted 21/05/2009 at 21:06:03

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82 and still got a season ticket?

Everton, stop pissing about and give him a Cup Final ticket NOW!!!
Mike Grundy
19   Posted 21/05/2009 at 21:41:29

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I think we should start a petition to get him a ticket! We can get t-shirts printed! It worked for Deidre Rashid !
Karl Masters
20   Posted 21/05/2009 at 23:19:01

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A disgusting way to treat someone who has been a season ticket holder since the days of Dixie Dean.

Really poor.
John Sweeney
21   Posted 22/05/2009 at 00:46:35

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Not only should EFC give him a ticket, they should take him down to Wembley on the team bus. So the players can hear first hand from someone who not only knows their history, but was also there when it was made. They can throw in one of them navy blue mohair suits that the boys will have on too.
John Harris
22   Posted 22/05/2009 at 07:38:11

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Sean Allinson

Rocket Surgery? I disagree. It?s more like Brain Science.
Chris Briddon
23   Posted 22/05/2009 at 12:36:22

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Sean - my point wasn’t that I deserve a ticket, but at the difficulty in where to draw the line when only having a limited number of tickets to give out.

Is someone who has been going to Goodison for 70 years more deserving of someone who has been to 40 games this season! There is no right naswer, just illustrating the difficulties the club has and that some people who believe they deserve a ticket will miss out.

Clearly more rocket surgery required!
Sean Allinson
24   Posted 22/05/2009 at 13:10:42

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No Chris, it isn?t difficult at all. The club cocked up and invited this poor bloke to turn up and queue for a ticket. He did so, only to be told that, through their bungling, they were going to disappoint him. He has held a season ticket for seventy years! That might even make him the longest serving season ticket holder in the club!

Yes, he deserves a ticket more than someone who has been to 40 games this season. Thousands of people would be able to claim the same. There will, however, be very few who have continued to support the team and held a season ticket since Tommy Lawton was a lad.

The club are going to ballot the last few remaining tickets among ST holders with no credits, why couldn?t they give him one of them? For shame....

Chris Briddon
25   Posted 22/05/2009 at 14:43:29

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So Sean, every supporter who was sent an e-mail by mistake should get a ticket then?

The fact that they only had 1 credit meant they shouldn’t have applied in the first place as the instructions said only people with 3 or more would be dealt with.

My point is not that they are deserving of a ticket, but that so are lots of other people who haven’t got one. There are proper channels to go through and processes in place, to ensure that the allocation is as fair as possible, but sometimes mistakes happen. Do you expect EFC to give tickets out to every sympathy story they got at the ticket office over the last few weeks!
Gerry Dignam
26   Posted 22/05/2009 at 16:39:46

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Does anyone know where the Everton match will be on in town on Sunday? Most pubs will have the crap on.
Tony Williams
27   Posted 22/05/2009 at 17:12:16

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Gerry you could try the First National, usually has both games on but if they don’t try the Pen & Wig, that is usally a Blue pub
Stewart Littler
28   Posted 23/05/2009 at 04:39:53

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Kevin - I sympathise with your father, but have to park myself on the side of the ?opposition?, although only to this debate, and agree with Chris.

The club have been left in a no-win situation because they haven?t got enough tickets to go round STHs. They have to pick one way of distributing tickets and stick with it. This year, they picked STH+3 credits (which was clearly advertised), so why hasn?t your father-in-law or a member of his family ?phoned the club to seek clarification?

Now I?ve been to all but 2 of this season?s games, missing away trips to Spurs and Wigan when I was on holiday. I am only 25 but intend to hold my ST for many years to come. Should I lose out on a ticket cos I?m younger than other fans and have held my ST for a shorter time? I could argue that they have seen it all before, whereas I was just 11 when we last won a trophy, and watched on TV. I was barely a toddler the time before that.

The people criticising the club should think about whether they could do a better job themselves, co-ordinating the response to a mass hysteria of fans clamouring for tickets, numbering circa 75k.

I?ll be back soon to look at your responses ? once again Kevin, sympathies to your father ? mine can?t go either, cos he didn?t have enough credits; as he said, that?s life ? the important thing is that we win it. NSNO

Sean Allinson
29   Posted 23/05/2009 at 09:05:57

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Wrong again Chris. All applications for tickets had to be in by deadline day, no matter how many credits you had. If you didn’t get your payment details in by then, you couldn’t get a ticket. Simple as. So he wasn’t trying to jump the queue, he applied as he was advised to by the club. The club then cocked it up and compounded their mistake by not dealing properly with the situation. Perhaps they could have offered him the ticket Kenwright has saved for Stallone, another deserving die-hard. If you can’t see why 70 years of unbroken support is not deserving of a ticket in itself, I pity you.
Jon J Cox
30   Posted 23/05/2009 at 13:41:38

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Actually, out of 40,000 tickets wouldn?t it be a decent gesture for the FA to give him a ticket.

It would also be one less for the touts.

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