BRIDPORT have issued an update to supporters regarding improved matchday experience following the 0-0 draw with Axminster Town on Boxing Day.

While the majority of supporters in a division-high attendance of 510 were admitted to the ground on time, a large number missed kick-off at 11am due to long queues outside St Mary’s Field.

In the statement, the Bees addressed a number of key findings, including gate management, large turnout, gate capacity, recruitment and expansion.

READ MORE: Bridport 0-0 Axminster Town - report

Signed off by chairman Adrian Scadding, the statement read as follows:

“Dear Supporters,

“In light of the queuing issues experienced at our recent Boxing Day football match, we wish to address the key issues and the actions we are taking to improve the match day experience for all supporters.

“We acknowledge that we had a small number of volunteers handling multiple duties, leading to inadequate gate management oversight before and during the match.

“We underestimated the level of turnout, particularly considering the timing of fans' arrivals mainly between 10.30 and 11am, which is typical for Boxing Day. Favourable weather conditions and a match between two local teams with strong followings contributed to the higher-than-expected attendance.

“A single gate proved insufficient to handle the volume of supporters, compounded by issues processing card payments with only one device available.

“We are prioritising basic repairs to the rear gate to facilitate its opening on busier match days, easing congestion and expediting entry for fans.

“Recognising the importance of smooth transactions, we will be adding an extra payment card device to streamline the process and reduce waiting times.

“We are actively seeking a match day operations manager as a volunteer to plan and coordinate stewarding activities effectively. Additionally, we will be advertising for additional volunteer stewards to assist with various tasks, including queue management, gate service, and ball collection. These roles will primarily be required pre-kick-off, with minimal involvement during games.

“Work has commenced on the restoration of a second gate, and we will be seeking assistance to ensure its readiness for the next significant match. Furthermore, discussions are underway to update the front gate building to accommodate a second queue, a medium-term improvement to enhance efficiency and fan experience.

“We appreciate your patience and understanding as we implement these improvements to ensure a smoother and more enjoyable match day experience for everyone. Your continued support is invaluable to us, and we look forward to welcoming you back to our stadium soon.”