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You said, we did: Supporter feedback fuels summer of change around cinch Stadium at Franklin’s Gardens

Northampton Saints supporters will benefit from a vast array of improvements when they return to cinch Stadium at Franklin’s Gardens for the 2023/24 season, following a busy summer behind the scenes.

After every home game of the 2022/23 campaign, Season Ticket Holders and matchday ticket purchasers were contacted for their feedback as to how the Club’s supporter experience could be improved.

Nearly 5,000 people responded, with their feedback contributing towards an extensive ‘to do list’ for a taskforce to implement during the off-season.

Those improvements range from keeping the Ticket Office open for a further 15 minutes after kick-off, to an upgraded PA system across all four stands.

Northampton Saints' Chief Executive, Mark Darbon, said: “We are already extremely proud of the matchday experience at cinch Stadium at Franklin’s Gardens – we have made a significant effort over the last few years to ensure our provision for supporters is best-in-class, and we were delighted to see our customer satisfaction scores once again rise to new heights in 2022/23.

“We also recently had our current matchday offering confirmed as the best in the Premiership by an independent validator working on behalf of the league.

“However, we’ll never rest on our laurels and remain committed to ongoing improvement – listening to our supporters’ views based on their own experiences.”

Mark Darbon, Northampton Saints Chief Executive

“This has allowed us to focus on a number of key areas across the stadium and a significant effort has been made with our team working hard throughout the summer to turn them into a reality.

“We’d like to thank our supporters for their feedback and we’ll always welcome input as to how we can provide the best matchday experience possible for those visiting cinch Stadium at Franklin’s Gardens.”

Below is a full list of changes and upgrades that have been made around the Gardens…

STADIUM

  • A new PA system has been installed across all four stands
  • More accessible parking spaces are now available to book
  • Smoking exit and re-entry at half-time at all gates, rather than only one
  • Upgraded hand dryers in several toilets around the ground
  • Regular seat cleaning will be conducted throughout the season
  • Painted step nosings around the stadium to make them easier to see

TICKETING

  • For the 2023/24 season onwards, the Ticket Office will stay open for 15 minutes after kick-off on matchdays, and re-open again at half-time

RETAIL

  • More ladieswear lines have been added – including a ladies-fit replica shirt available for the 2023/24 season
  • ‘Click and collect’ is now available from the store located in the Supporter Village
  • Updated signage to help supporters navigate around the Saints Store

SUSTAINABILITY

  • New ‘meat free’ food outlet now available within Supporter Village
  • ‘Bag for Life’ now available to transport Saints Store purchases back home
  • No Season Ticket Cards printed for renewing members for the 2023/24 season – saving thousands of new plastic cards being produced

FOOD & DRINK

  • New digital signage has been implemented across all bars and outlets
  • More hot drink provision across the stadium
  • New beer lines have been installed in the cinch Stand Kiosk to improve the accessibility and quality of beer
  • Rodber Bar: New food and barista coffee offerings within the bar
  • Cashless card refunds (for EcoCup returns) are now accessible at all till points across the stadium to avoid queuing at half-time and full-time

HOSPITALITY

  • Barwell Stand Executive Boxes have undergone refurbishments
  • Upgrades have been completed to both Carlsberg Stand and Barwell Stand receptions
  • The Club has agreed a new AV partnership with LG to improve provision across the venue – including a brand-new 109” LG LED Display screen installed in the Michael Jones Jeweller Champions Suite
  • Several hospitality lounges have been reconfigured to further improve customer experience
  • A brand-new online payment solution from Club partner Barclaycard – called ‘Smartpay Fuse’ – will be available for customers to use from next week
  • The Club have conducted recruitment days and training workshops this summer for hospitality staff and matchday hosts
  • New beer lines have been installed in cinch Stand (Legends Lounge and Boxes), Carlsberg Stand (Boxes), and Barwell Stand (Boxes) to improve accessibility and quality of beer and speed of service
  • New glassware and napkins across the hospitality lounges
  • Investment in new furniture to improve provision across Legends Lounge, Captain’s Bar and Heroes Restaurant
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