This past week brought the disappointing news that the Gallowgate Flags organisers were bringing to an end to the pre-match displays, for the ‘foreseeable’ future.
After only a few matches they admitted that with a dwindling number of supporters volunteering to help, it wasn’t feasible to keep the pre-match initiative going.
The number of flags on show having been significantly reduced as support from matchday volunteers faded .
When asked if the halt to the displays was connected with the stealing of the Gallowgate Flags (around 20% of them were reported to have been taken by fellow supporters on the day of the first display), the organisers stated that this wasn’t the case.
“For people asking there’ll be no flag displays for the foreseeable as we don’t have the volunteers.
“No not at all (more flags being stolen). All are handed back. We’ve just been doing smaller displays due to lack of volunteers.”
However, now there has been a more positive update, with the people behind the flags initiative claiming that the pre-match displays ‘will be back bigger and better very soon’.
“Just some clarification – Flag displays will be back bigger and better very soon. Just need some time to re-organise and plan things.”
Good on the organisers and the many fans who contributed money to pay for the flags but there was always one big obvious flaw in the plan.
With no Gallowgate Flags able to be used during the actual match to help stir up the atmosphere, why would supporters (both volunteers and those in the rest of St James Park) be interested match after match to desert their friends in the hundreds of drinking establishments (and cafes, restaurants etc) only minutes from the ground, to watch flags being waved?
Hopefully a way around these teething problems will be found and the pre-match atmosphere assisted once again by this initiative, for those who are willing to sacrifice that last pint (or two..).