Cheltenham Town have been named as Family Excellence Award winners.The Football League have recognised Cheltenham Town, amongst other clubs, with a Family Excellence award.
Created in 2007, the Award recognises the outstanding experience clubs provide for young fans and families at their grounds. The winners are decided by an independent assessment, using 'mystery shopper' families commissioned by The Football League, at all 72 League clubs during the 2012/13 season.
Cheltenham Town will be going one step further next season by introducing free football for children at Junior School age when they sign up to the free to join Junior Robins scheme. For more information on that click on the Junior Robins link below.
Free Football For Junior Robins
47 clubs from across all three divisions of The Football League were given the Award for 2013 - with eight clubs securing it for the sixth year running. A total of four also won the award for the first time this year.
In announcing the successful clubs, Football League Chairman Greg Clarke said: "The Football League Family Excellence Award provides clubs with a benchmark in their efforts to attract families through their gates.
"It is hugely encouraging to see so many clubs receiving the accolade, demonstrating The Football League's commitment to securing the next generation of fans."
With greater use of family areas, matchday entertainment and family pricing initiatives, the 2012/13 season has seen an increasing focus on making the experience itself more compelling.
The provision of specific pre-match information for families and first-time fans, dedicated family stadium entrances, specially trained family area receptionists, technology-supported entertainment, and a comprehensive effort to rid family areas of abusive language and anti-social behaviour, have all combined to increase the benchmark.
The judges were particularly impressed with the efforts clubs are making to engage with families through matchday entertainment, refreshment facilities and mascot activities, all ensuring they can enjoy the match in a dedicated, safe, welcoming and entertaining environment.
The Football League also aims to give encouragement to those clubs that have not been successful this time around. Best practice guidance, benchmarking feedback and training will be available to the remaining clubs to encourage their efforts towards achieving the mark next season.