Sunday, 29 March 2009

Austerity theme for relegated club

New style season book

Charlton have decided to respond to their relegation to League 1 by theming the club on austerity lines. Season ticket books will be replaced by a book based on the ration book used during and after the Second World War. 'Points' will be taken out of the book by the gateman depending on the previous week's result.

More points will be taken out if the club wins than if it draws and fewer will be deducted if it loses. If the club does well, fans will run out of points before the end of the season. Additional points can then be purchased from a team led by Rick Everitt who will positioned around the ground dressed as 'spivs'. Earlier in the season they will sell nylons for sweethearts and luxuries such as light bulbs and chocolate.

If the team does not do so well and season ticket holders are left with surplus points, they can be exchanged in the club shop for surplus goods such as Zheng Zhi mugs. There will also be some new austerity lines available such as copious supplies of Brylcreem. The smoking ban in the ground will be lifted and the famous 'Red and White' cigarettes will be also be sold once again. Other products available will include Kilkoff Kone pastilles and Boar's Head tobacco. The refreshment kiosks will sell peanuts, Bovril, Horlicks and Charrington's Toby beer.

Standing will be permitted in all stands except the West. Grandstand seats in the West Stand will be pre-bookable at branches of the RACS, aka 'Robbing All Customers Slowly'.

A special box will be erected in the space between the East and Jimmy Seed stands and at half time scores will be placed alongside a number of letters such as A, B, C etc. A code in the programme will, for example, tell you that the placement of boards saying 1-2 against letter C will means that Charlton Reserves are winning at Aldershot at which point a faint cheer will echo round the ground. Should the letter W appear, it means match abandoned.

The official programme will be eight pages without pictures and will contain 'Club Notes' and 'Echoes Across the Valley'. The Rickshaw service will be operated by unheated buses with difficult gear changes. 'Clippies' will invite fans to 'move on down inside' and 'room for five more on top'.

Players will wear baggy knickers. They will be paid a maximum wage of £20 a week, but with bonuses of £2 for a win and £1 for a draw. They will be expected to walk to the ground carrying their own boots, but may have the opportunity to rent a semi-detached property with inside amenities from the club.

A club spokesperson explained, 'We won't have much money next season and this is one way of keeping the club solvent whilst giving fans a football experience not available anywhere else in London.'

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