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Vanarama praised for helping out Grimsby and Solihull as National League get criticised

Sponsors Vanarama have been praised for helping out Grimsby and Solihull as the National League continue to get criticised.

They pledge to give £20,000 to both the playoff finalists, after the backlash to the pricing of tickets for the showpiece at the London Stadium.

This comes after they had raised the same amount through a Mariners Trust fundraiser which will pay for around 1,000 concessions tickets for families unable to afford tickets on their own.

Vanarama praised for helping out Grimsby and Solihull as National League get slandered

Adult tickets for the game were priced at a minimum of £40 and concessions at £20, with no additional offers for child or OAP fans. This was more expensive that costs for tickets at this year’s Championship playoff final, yet the National League said ticket’s for their final was less that what they’ve issued in previous seasons.

@taylorkev1969: Are you reading this @TheVanaramaNL even the sponsors understand the problems you’ve caused

Vanarama will match the money raised by the trust, as well as donating to Grimsby’s opponents Solihull to help cover ticket, travel and accommodation costs to ensure all fans wanting to go can attend the final.

They wrote: “We completely understand the fans’ frustration with ticket pricing for the National League Promotion Final. We are in contact with both clubs to see how we can help.

“As title sponsor it’s our intention always to have a positive impact on the league, its clubs and the fans. We are in constant contact with the league but unfortunately have no say over venue and pricing.

“We’ve donated £20,000 each to @officialgtfc (via @MarinersTrust) & @SolihullMoors to help with their fans’ travel and to bring down costs for kids tickets. We’re speaking to the league about doing more to listen to and understand the fans to avoid this happening again.”

In response to this, The Mariners Trust released a statement: “48 hours ago, when a number of fans had messaged us asking how they could help get more fans to London after seeing ticket prices, little did we know that the final total received would be £23,899.29!

“While we’ve been collating and contacting fans you may have seen the Vanarama tweet confirming that they were talking with Clubs on how they could help. In our case, they have committed £20,000 to the Trust to cover all of the extra costs for fans in this scenario, with any remaining monies moving across to the pot above.

“We would like to give a huge amount of thanks to Vanarama for this gesture – it certainly means that we can help more fans. We ask for you to bear with us on this as workload priority will be given to fans without any tickets.”

On Tuesday, Grimsby announced they had sold over 11,500 tickets for the game; the latest announced figure from Solihull claims they have sold 4,300. These figures will no doubt be significantly boosted by Vanarama’s pledge.

Jeff Stelling also tweeted his thoughts: “40 quid plus for National League play off final tickets- 20 for kids. Don’t we want people to support their local teams? They already have to pay for travel from Solihull and Grimsby to East London. These fans are the bedrock of football and yet treated shamefully.”

Fans reacted with Vanarama praised for helping out Grimsby and Solihull as the National League get criticised…

@Rob_S_and_P_in: That’s fantastic, great gesture 👏

@Grumpy_GreyHead: That’s a fantastic amount. Thanks for your ongoing support to the national league

@StephenRushton2: Great to see the sponsors on side with the fans 👏👏 And hopefully the league will listen to you cos it sure treats fans with contempt

@odo332001: Well done for stepping up to the plate, shouldn’t have had to happen though, the NL knew the teams in the play offs, knew they were all more suited to the final being played up North/Midlands and also knew it was jubilee weekend.. you’ve had to bail the NL out and you have 👏👏

@doug_jeff: Fantastic gesture and well done! Was never angry at you, you deserve to be thanked for being a supporter of non-league football in general. I honestly think those in change of @TheVanaramaNL are letting you down!

@chris_eaton_: Embarrassing for the league that their title sponsor has to help bail their greed out. Need a long look at yourselves @TheVanaramaNL 🤦‍♂️

@imwacca: fair fucking play, great gesture. now time for @TheVanaramaNL to stop hiding

@nathjhill318: Fair play, great gesture 👏🏼 Says a lot about a league when their own sponsor has to bail out fans due to the league’s greed…

@paulowen26: Amazing gesture. @TheVanaramaNL should be highly ashamed that their sponsors are more in touch with the fans than they are.

@trevhewsongy: It was never your fault, entirely down to @TheVanaramaNL They now have to sort their shit out to make sure this doesn’t happen again.

@JohnTondeur: A very good gesture. But it would be good if @TheVanaramaNL also made an apology that they messed it up at the very least.

@Andy_darwinWXM: Great gesture @Vanarama but the officials of the @TheVanaramaNL are absolutely tone deaf to the supporters within it. So out of touch when there is a issue they simply turn comments off. The way its run isn’t great!

@codalmighty: Well done, showing much more responsibility and care than the organisation which is lucky to have you as sponsor. Thank you.

@rh0de5: Well done @Vanarama. Wasn’t really your fault but great gesture and certainly gives creditable to a company that is unfortunately sponsoring a unfit for purpose one.

@mattw1980: Absolutely fair play for your generosity to both clubs here, time for the @TheVanaramaNL to take a long hard look in the mirror and ensure this never happens again, and they also need to be dam great full you have bailed them out here!

@jmpschooley: @TheVanaramaNL I hope you realise what a huge embarrassment this is for you. To have whip-arounds from member clubs AND your own title sponsor donating money to help tackle high ticket prices for the play-off final. PR disaster. Hopefully you’re learning some lessons.

@DavidBu67718114: You can’t knock this response and hopefully it will help fans in the future. Fans have struck a chord. Well done to all.

@curtiz58: Fantastic gesture,the problem was caused by a national league board not fit for purpose,a shame that you got caught up in this mess which you have dealt with superbly 👏👏👏

@BodenFinn: The way how the whole event was handled was disgusting even though it wasn’t your fault @TheVanaramaNL need to step up and actually admit they have done wrong

@HodgyGTFC: Fair play. Shame that the sponsor has had to bail out the management paid stupid money to make the game more accessible to fans. Their greed and poor decision making has dragged you into this. Please hold them to account. However, thank you for your gesture. 👏🏻

@AdamPro_Actor: Strike your sponsorship with them. They don’t deserve it. Big changes required. Pathetic/Embarrassing.

@MNorvock: Doing what @TheVanaramaNL should have done from the off! But thank you!

@ChuckyShed: Pretty embarrassing for the league.

@WhereverIPlease: Quite incredible that this needs doing. Staging in London, on jubilee weekend, for northern/Midlands teams is just outright sniggering at the ‘football without fans is nothing’ strapline. They’re not even hiding it.

@ShedBaggie: And in addition to the high ticket price for a non league game there is a £3 Admin fee and £0.99 to have your ticket emailed to you to print off at home! Rip off. Who endorsed this at the National League?

@foggy921975: Good work by Vanarama to politely telling the National League they are out of touch dinosaurs without telling them. It should never get to this but the ignorant idiots at National League are too stubborn to do anything other than ride it out.

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