Next season the Polypipe South Stand will become an unreserved seating section.Rovers took the decision to make the area unreserved after various meetings with the Rovers Fan Panel (which represents all of our supporter groups) who agreed that it would help create a better atmosphere at Keepmoat Stadium.
The Club have publicised that we want to work with our fans to improve the atmosphere at Keepmoat Stadium and this is the first move to do that.
We understand that some of our supporters are concerned about this announcement. The Club would like to make it clear that any supporters concerned by an unreserved seating area or by the closure of parts of the West Stand (due to significantly increased policing costs) should contact the club at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Mark Bradley of The Fan Experience Company who chairs the Fan Panels said: "The Club has taken consultation with its supporters seriously since In Rovers We Trust began in early 2012. While results and league position have varied dramatically over this period, supporters have made it clear that the club’s biggest priority should be improving the atmosphere within the stadium, as that will create a better experience, encourage ‘lost’ fans to return and help to construct Fortress Keepmoat!
“In recent weeks we’ve worked closely with a group of core Rovers fans to look into this. We agreed that the creation of a home end was vital and we also agreed that in order to maximise attendance we’d need to restore some of the ‘freedoms’ associated with the way things used to be at Belle Vue. This is why having cash turnstiles and an area of unreserved seating has been introduced as part of the plan.
“We know it’s not possible to bring about change and please everyone at the same time, but we know similar initiatives have worked very well at other clubs (especially when supporters have been consulted and involved in the plans) and given our reputation for leading on supporter engagement, we wanted to bring those benefits to Rovers too.”
Marketing and Communications Manager Ryan Murrant said: “We have had some really positive feedback since we announced the unreserved seating area. After talking to the players and the management they also seem very excited that our supporters really want to get the “Belle Vue buzz” to Rovers games. To have that South Stand rocking and for it to be “an end” could really help the players on matchdays.
“From my own personal experience, and I’ve been to over 700 Leicester games, when they made it unreserved seating at Filbert Street people had similar concerns. What happened there was brilliant though. From the left to the right hand side of the kop was like a scale of noise. Those that wanted a more relaxed matchday sat from the middle to the left and those that wanted to be in “crazy corner” where usually the fans were a lot more vocal, did so. As “an end” the atmosphere was electric. What I was pleasantly surprised by was although it was an unreserved seating area, there was an unwritten rule of “that’s my seat”, I sat in the same seat every week, for years, as did my mates.
“At Rovers we don’t want our fans to worry about this development at all. The atmosphere will be better and by continuing to work with our fans to develop the South Stand, there is no reason why our atmosphere can’t rival that of the likes Crystal Palace. We want our fans to be the loudest and proudest in Yorkshire.”
Season Tickets for the 2015/16 are on sale on Friday January 16 from 9am until 7pm and then from 9am on Monday January 19th.