Manchester City may be owned by a sheikh worth £20bn – but Morecambe FC still has a better matchday experience than them and that’s official!
Our tiny League Two football club had a big night at the Stadium Events and Hospitality Awards winning Best Matchday Hospitality (small stadium).
Morecambe also came second in the award for Best Matchday Hospitality overall beating City, owned by the Premier League’s richest owner Sheikh Mansour, into third place. Only Premier League Hull City Tigers were judged to have a better matchday experience than the Globe Arena.
The awards ceremony at Coventry’s Ricoh Arena attracted more than 370 guests from football and rugby stadia across the country.
Seventy-one football and rugby clubs were nominated including Arsenal, Liverpool, Chelsea, Everton and Spurs.
A Shrimps team headed by operations manager Michael O’Brien, his deputy Toby Greenwood, commercial manager Steven Brown, head chef Graham Aimson and hospitality co-ordinator Gillian Lumb were there to collect the award.
Mark Dixon, general manager at Morecambe, said: “For us to beat Man City at anything is pretty amazing.
“It’s down to attention to detail, giving people what they want. It’s not about cost and it’s not just about the food. It’s everything from the moment somebody contacts us to book tickets, to arriving for the match, the car park stewards, the reception staff, the waiters and waitresses, and bar staff.
“It’s about making sure every single person who comes here, whether it’s for a pie and a pint or a hospitality box, has a positive experience.
“The board of directors are extremely proud of the hospitality team and everything they bring to the club.”
Morecambe has had a difficult season on the pitch, finishing third from bottom in League Two, with the league’s lowest average attendance of just over 1,500.
But Mr Dixon hoped the awards success would both boost attendances and be positive publicity for Morecambe itself.
The club won The Visitor’s Ambassador Award at the 2015 Sunshine Awards because of the work they do to put the town on the map.
“People will come now because we have won this,” said Mr Dixon.
“We are not just promoting Morecambe FC, we are promoting the town and that’s what we are most proud of.”
Morecambe beat Newcastle Falcons Rugby Club into second place in the Small Stadium Award, given to clubs with up to 1,000 hospitality seats. Dundee United FC came third. The 12th annual awards, organised by Stadium Experience, recognise the efforts and dedication shown by the catering, conference and events teams at every football and rugby stadium across the UK.