We recently published an article from season ticket holder Ryan Douglas who was delayed due to a traffic accident and turned up at the start of the second half of the Manchester United match and the club officials wouldn’t let him into St.James’ Park.

(If you would like to feature like Ryan on our/your website, get writing)

Ryan has been in touch with Newcastle United and received a response, here is his original article with the club’s response below;

‘I am a Newcastle United season ticket holder and pay my direct debit every month. I was travelling up from London for the Manchester United match (due to a family anniversary) and was delayed due to traffic from an accident, though I obviously tried to get to the stadium as quickly as possible for the game.

After 8 long hours on the road I finally arrived at the stadium for the beginning of the second half only to find the turnstiles closed.

I spoke to the steward who informed me there was nothing they could do.

I spoke to the supervisor who again said they couldn’t allow me entry due to, “club rules”, although he then told me if I had a paper ticket I would have been allowed in as they don’t need to be scanned like my season ticket card needs to be.

His actual words were, “a paper ticker holder takes priority over a season ticket holder as those are club rules”.

I can’t believe they would admit this and disregard a season ticket holder who pays every month in favour of some fan who has paid for one game.

He then turned me away stating there was nothing he could do and my seat remained empty for the remainder of the game’.

Ryan has now received the following response from the Newcastle United Box Office;

Hello Mr Douglas,

I am sorry you encountered trouble getting in to the game on Sunday, I have checked your account and I can assure you that your card was not blocked, in fact the system tells me that you did not try to gain entry so I’m not sure why a steward would tell you it was blocked. I think there may have been a misunderstanding about paper tickets taking priority, paper tickets merely override your smartcard if for any reason we have to reprint a ticket i.e. card not working or card forgotten. The Box office was open until half time so if you had arrived before then we would have sorted the problem for you.

 I will forward your email to health and safety and see if they can shed any light on the matter.

 Kind regards

It will be interesting to see if ‘Health and Safety’ can ‘shed any light’ but it is almost as if the person replying hasn’t really read what the problem was.

What relevance has the box office being open until half-time have, when you don’t arrive until the start of the second-half?

The problem wasn’t that Ryan’s card was blocked but that the turnstiles were closed and because of that his card couldn’t be scanned, leading to the stewards/supervisor response that this meant he couldn’t get into the ground because of ‘club rules’.

Not exactly a satisfactory response and sounds a bit like passing the buck to the person with the Health and Safety hat on.

I think quite simply the question that needs answering is that if you turn up late and the turnstiles have closed, is it club policy that season ticket holders won’t be admitted to St.James’ Park, or was it just jobsworths who couldn’t be bothered to deal with it properly?

Newcastle United 1000 Goals is available at an ultra-competitive pre-order price of £13 (DVD out 22nd Oct) with free delivery at our DVD partner AMAZON – Click Here To Order Now.

***Their ‘Pre-Order Price Guarantee’ means that if the AMAZON price decreases between the time you place your order and the release date (22nd Oct), you’ll be charged the lowest price.

  • Stevie

    Well why didn’t he ask that in his letter?

    • Munich Mag

      Because the main issue for the lad is what are the club going to do about HIS case, and that he probably looking for some kind of apology or humane response.

      • Robey

        Clearly the problem is that NUFC do not have smartcard scanners available apart from in a turnstile. Perhaps they have mobile barcode scanners so that they could have scanned a paper ticket. However, it would be a simple matter to interrogate the access control system to see if the card had been used for that game. Very poor from NUFC and the lad deserves a match ticket refund, at least.

        • Munich Mag

          Spot on Robey…

  • Munich Mag

    Man what a poorly formulated response from “my” club. They are arrogantly insinuating that the punter was the problem here. He’s probably more pee’ed off after receiving this response than before ! At least he can rest assured that “Health and Safety” are looking into it. I hope the lad posts their response on this web site….

  • jobsworths

    since they’ve changed the date of the Wigan game and I’ve already got my shifts sorted for the original game (i.e. I’d requested the Saturday off) I don’t finish work until 8pm potentially unless I can get someone to come in early to let me go. therefore if I don’t get to the ground until half 8 at the earliest will I too be knocked back??? It’s all very worrying. If you’ve paid your money upfront then you should be entitled to gain access whatever time your life (restrictions of shift work and TV changing the bloody games) allows you to physically get there!!

  • Keith

    I think that just about sums up what football clubs think of the people who make them exist. Until a significant number of people get together in organized protest which sadly does involve a boycott as hitting them in the pocket is the only thing people like Ashley bother about. Banners etc don’t work in fact as you seem to give up your basic liberties when you hand over your cash for a ticket and they get taken away. What should happen here is a full refund to the cost of the equivalent ticket to this season ticket holders seat be interesting to see how far this needs to be per sued for that to happen.

  • Dave Green

    You should take this to the Football Supporters Federation, this sounds like the sort of thing they deal with all the time. Their website is http://www.fsf.org.uk

  • Munich Mag

    Jobsworths sums things up perfectly below. By the mere fact that the media decides which games are to be televised, and can push and shove fixtures accordingly, then surely the clubs need to move with the times and allow the paying punter a certain degree of flexibilty with the ticketing arrangements. Talk about biting the hand that feeds you. The supposed response posted above from NUFC could have been communicated so differently if the club had nothered themselves with the real issue at hand – there own incompetency…