Never a dull moment on the Fylde Coast, as Blackpool FC’s new shirt sponsor, Village Hotels has succumbed to fan pressure.
Following a meeting with supporters groups, Tangerine Knights and Blackpool Supporters’ Trust, Village CEO, Gary Davis released the following statement:
“At Village Hotels, we support local football teams, professional, amateur and kids. Blackpool was one of many teams we supported. And in hindsight maybe it is something we should have avoided.
“But the shirt deal is done and we cannot turn the clock back. However, we have no intention of any other interaction with the club. We are a local hotel and are happy to host supporters meetings and help fans in any way we can. We are happy to commit future sponsorship to a new ownership.”
The season-long deal was signed at the end of last month, but since then it appears that a number of fans have stopped using the local hotel and cancelled their golf and leisure club memberships.
Since the meeting with Davis, supporters groups have advised fans to “continue to show support for Village Urban Resorts and the services they offer.”
Elsewhere, the club has criticised reporting in local paper, the Blackpool Gazette. Under a heading “clarification” it stated:
“At a time when Neil McDonald is working to turn the club’s fortunes around, the Blackpool Gazette feels compelled to continue with a number of inaccurate and misleading headlines or articles.
“In a recent column, it was stated in the Gazette that the club was giving ‘preferential treatment’ to media partners in what was ‘basically a pay-as-you-interview scenario’. This has not been the case, as highlighted by the interviews the manager has done with eight different media organisations outside of match obligations.”
“The club has made clear that it will favour sensible, balanced media alongside those that hold arrangements with The Football League this season.
“It is important that supporters continue to seek accurate information regarding the club on the official website and via other media outlets.”