DEAN HOYLE says he will continue to drive Town forward – but has warned he cannot do it without the backing of fans.
Details of the Galpharm club’s season-ticket saver offer for 2010-11 will be unveiled tomorrow.
And the chairman said: “While I will continue to put my hand in my pocket, they are not bottomless, especially with the investment required to pay transfer fees to bring in new players.”
With boss Lee Clark aiming to get Town’s play-off bid back on course with a win at Leyton Orient on Saturday, Hoyle told supporters: “We need to take further and bigger strides forward. I cannot stress enough that development can only continue with your support.
“The club cannot be turned around quickly. As I have said before, it will take some time and millions of up-front investment by me to fund some losses.
“We are making steady progress. I am prepared to do what it takes but I cannot do it alone. The club needs your support. I need your support.”
Explaining the pricing structure of the season-ticket saver offer, which will run from March 22 to April 2, Hoyle said: “In 2008-09, we had more than 16,000 season-ticket holders who had taken advantage of the centenary £100 offer.
“In 2009-10, clearly the prices in the centenary offer were unsustainable, so we started the process of returning our season-ticket prices towards what you could describe as ‘normality’.
“But we also recognised times were tough for supporters and wanted to retain as many of the new fans who joined us during the centenary season as we could in the ‘New Era’.
“We tried very hard to reflect and balance all those factors, which was no easy task. We offered choices for everyone, but the prices we set were still generally below those of the 2007-08 season and amongst the lowest in League I, to see some of the best players and exciting football.
“As a result, we sold 11,000 season-tickets for this season, one in which we have already seen some fantastic football, great performances and goals from some young players who will become established stars in the future.
“We improved the home matchday experience with a number of family-based initiatives, contributing to us being named League I Family Club of the Year.
“Overall, I would challenge anyone to say they had not had value for money.
“The response and support from our fans has made me a very proud man. Home and away each week, over some very long journeys, I get a reminder of why I got involved at this club and why we need to get things right and bring success to Huddersfield Town.
“The challenge for everyone at the club is to do better – every day, every week and each year. So what about season-ticket prices?
“Again, in setting them, we have been faced with a very difficult task.
“Many of the issues from last year remain but these are added to. Which league will we be in? What can fans afford now? What prices do the club need to be sustainable having lost £4m in 2008-09?
“What prices are justifiable for the entertainment on offer, the performances and players on show? What is the going rate for similar clubs in League I? Not easy.
“That said, ticket prices at Town have to either better reflect the costs of running the club or otherwise the running costs must be reduced – and that means lower player wages.
“These will fall next year to some extent but that alone will not be sufficient.”
Hoyle continued: “With the saver offer, we have sought to reward existing season-ticket holders, who will pay less than new ones, and we have offered an opportunity to fans to buy early to make the biggest savings.
“If we do achieve promotion, it will represent fantastic value. Even in League I, the prices remain good value especially compared with similar clubs.
“I recognise that we cannot please everyone, but fans should take comfort that I won’t compromise the future and sustainability of our club.
“Like all offers, it will be open for just a short period, March 22 to April 2. The normal renewal prices will be issued in the renewal brochures on April 12, ‘HuddersfieldŠTownŠDay’, and those prices will be available until May 7, when we will review them based on the outcome of the season.
“As the name suggests the discounted prices in the offer will be lower than the normal renewal prices which come in after April 12.
“For those wishing to purchase after May 7, further announcements will be made.”
What do you think about season ticket pricing? What should the club do? Have your say in the box at the foot of page one.