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Customer Charter

Customer Charter

IPSWICH TOWN FC - CUSTOMER CHARTER 2017/18

At Ipswich Town Football Club we care about our supporters and our customers and within this Customer Charter we outline the minimum standards of service that all customers will receive.

We are committed to providing the best facilities and excellence in service and are constantly striving to improve in everything we do. We monitor our performance using independent market research but undoubtedly the best way to improve is to listen to the views of our supporters and customers so if you have any comments to make about this Charter or any other customer service issue please be assured that we will welcome your feedback. Contact us at customerservice@itfc.co.uk. 

Our continued focus is to bring together our family areas into one stand so that we can serve our families better. We have already created a robust Junior Blues club and wish to expand on that to encourage young supporters for the future. We have delivered interesting and innovative pre-match entertainment on our practice pitch and are planning further activities this coming year. Our practice pitch is situated behind our main family areas in the East of England Co-operative Stand.

A report on how we perform against our Customer Charter incorporating any improvements we have put in place is submitted to the English Football League.

 For convenience relevant information can be found under the following headings: 

1.

Ticketing

 7.

Merchandise

2.

Memberships + Junior Blues

 8.

Community Activities

3.

Facilities for Disabled Supporters

 9.

Data Protection

4.

Inclusion & Anti-Discrimination

10.

Stewarding

5.

Staff Conduct

11.

Complaints Procedure

6.

Communication &Public Relations

12.

Supporter Liaison Officer [SLO]

Ticket Information

Information on ticket availability etc, will be updated daily and can be obtained by visiting our www.itfcdirect.com or website, by telephoning our Ticket Enquiries Team on 03330 05 05 03 and at the Club’s Planet Blue store.

This information will also be available on our official website on www.itfc.co.uk and will be announced on our match day public address system.  We offer a wide choice of seating and a range of Season Ticket prices that enable customers to select a ticket to suit their budget.  Full details of the range are mailed out to all Season Ticket holders, Club members and regular match ticket purchasers prior to the start of the season. This information is also available on request from our Ticket Enquiries Team and on our official website www.itfc.co.uk.

Hospitality is available for all home fixtures and full details can be obtained by calling 01473 400594, emailing sales@itfc.co.uk, or visiting www.numberonevenu.co.uk.

Season Ticket holders are offered the opportunity of spreading the cost of their tickets through a direct debit scheme. The scheme offers a period of 12 months for purchasers who opt in before the Club’s early bird deadline date and also allows for spread payments over a variable time span for purchases throughout the season. This payment plan scheme is offered on an interest-free basis ensuring the purchaser incurs no additional cost.

The Club will limit Season Ticket sales so that a minimum of 5% of our home supporter capacity will be made available for sale on a match-by-match basis. 

From the 2016/17 season, the Club will introduce a single tier pricing structure for all home league games. This simplified structure will eradicate confusion among supporters and will allow for easier budgeting of ticket purchasing.

3,119 seats within the Stadium are in our designated Family areas.  We regulate the sale of adult tickets against junior tickets in this area to retain and foster an atmosphere that is welcoming to our younger supporters.  The new base for Junior Blues in the East of England Co-operative Stand will give young fans a chance to meet up with others in prior to a game. There are also co-ordinated activities on the adjacent FieldTurf area for our younger supporters at most home matches. 

In line with national and FA legislation, the whole Stadium is designated a non-smoking area.  Anyone who is found smoking will be ejected from the ground.  This is in addition to any fine that could be imposed by the Ipswich Borough Council Enforcement Officers on the individual or upon the Club.  For anyone considering leaving the stadium to smoke, please note that no re-admission to the ground will be permitted.

Ticket Allocation 

We will continue to operate a ticket booking priority system for both home and away matches to ensure that tickets are allocated to supporters fairly. The following information is communicated to all Season Ticket holders and Club members prior to the start of the season. Please note that prior to any tickets going to general sale, members or Season Ticket holders can only purchase one ticket each for away matches.

Ticket priority for home league matches

  1. Season Ticket holders have their own seat for every home league match.
  2. Debenture holders
  3. Platinum members
  4. Silver members
  5. Gold members
  6. Season ticket holders
  7. General Sale

Ticket priority for FA Cup and League Cup home matches

  1. Season Ticket holders to purchase their own seat.
  2. Debenture holders
  3. Platinum members
  4. Silver members
  5. General sale and including additional tickets for Gold members and Season Ticket holders. 

The club reserves the right to change maximum and minimum allocation levels and sales order at the priority stage for home league and cup matches which are deemed to be of high demand. 

Ticket priority for away matches

When the Club receives a limited allocation of tickets for an away match, it reserves the right to allocate tickets to Club members and season ticket holders who have attended a minimum number of away matches in the season.  Please note that for the Club to be able to register away match tickets they must be purchased from Ipswich Town FC, using the individual customer number of each supporter purchasing, and not bought directly from the away club. 

For away matches where we have sufficient tickets to meet general demand the following priority will apply: 

  1. Debenture holders.
  2. Platinum members
  3. Gold members
  4. Season ticket holders
  5. Silver members
  6. General sale

Please note that Junior Blues membership does not carry with it any ticketing privileges. However if the Junior Blue is also a Season Ticket holder then Gold Club members may purchase tickets on their behalf.  Similarly Silver Club members can purchase on behalf of a Junior Blues member.

Refunds

A full refund will be given to any supporter returning a match ticket for a home match to the Ticket Enquiries Centre prior to kick off of the match.

A full refund will be given to any supporter returning an away match ticket 5 days prior to the match.

Refunds for Season Tickets are allowed only at the discretion of the Club.  Supporters must apply in writing stating the reason for the request and enclosing any supporting facts.

No refunds are given on seasonal or single match hospitality packages, should the customer wish to cancel or reduce the package in any way.

The Club offers free or reduced admission to replays of abandoned games to those who had purchased tickets for the original match.  If a match is abandoned after spectators are admitted to the ground but before kick-off, ticket holders are entitled to free admission to the rearranged match.  If a match is abandoned after kick off, spectators are entitled to half price admission to the rearranged match. 

In the event that a fixture is postponed or moved due to cup matches, any hospitality package purchased will be valid for the rescheduled date.  If the customer cannot attend the new fixture date, transfer to another fixture can be arranged, subject to availability.  Should no available date be suitable, the Club may offer a refund at their discretion.

Full details on this and other Club policies can be found on the Club’s ground regulations displayed within the Club’s Planet Blue Store, Ticket Enquiries Centre and on the official website at www.itfc.co.uk

Full hospitality terms and conditions can be found on the club website, or can be requested by emailing sales@itfc.co.uk.

Concessions

Concession priced match tickets are available to juniors under the age of 16, to senior citizens aged 60 and above, under 20s and to students in full time education. Season Tickets are also offered at concession prices to under 11s, under 16s, under 20s, students in full time education and senior citizens over the age of 60.  The under 11 categories are only available in the designated Family Areas and the South Stand lower tier. Supporters applying for any concession priced tickets will be asked to provide proof of date of birth or in the case of students, current proof of full time education.

No concession rates are offered on hospitality packages.

Away Supporters

Ipswich Town Football Club abides by the English Football League’s ticket allocation policy for visiting clubs including the allocation of 10% of available disabled seats to away supporters.

Admission prices for away supporters will be no higher than those charged for matchday tickets for home supporters in comparable areas.

Concession prices for under 16s, under 20s, students in full time education and Senior Citizens are also offered to away supporters.

Away supporters are welcome in hospitality areas.  However, as these facilities are situated in home areas of the ground, away supporters are expected to behave in a respectful manner, especially in the event of a goal being scored.

The Club operates a range of Membership schemes

  • Platinum membership for adult Season Ticket holders
  • Gold membership for adult Season Ticket holders
  • Silver membership for adult non Season Ticket holders
  • Ambassador membership for adult non Season Ticket holders
  • Cobbold Club membership
  • Junior Blues membership for juniors aged 5 to 15.

Adult Club members benefit from ticket priority for home and away matches, and also waivered ticket booking fees for standard home and away league matches purchased via the Club’s online booking service or Club Shop. 

Cobbold Club membership is a paid scheme offering with extremely attractive privileges for adult home supporters.  Members are invited to attend free events, receive priority booking and discounts on hospitality, advertising and sponsorship at ITFC, plus the opportunity to enjoy a home match with a guest in the ITFC Directors’ Box for a home match.  For more information contact the Sales Team on 01473 400594 or email sales@itfc.co.uk. 

Junior Blues

Junior Blues is a seasonal membership scheme running from August to July which is purchased with a one-off payment of ÂŁ15.95.  It is aimed at ITFC supporters up to the age of 15.  The membership provides a number of benefits for its members, including booking on to exclusive events that take place throughout the season.  It also invites young fans to spend time at Portman Road by offering a voucher for a free family ticket for the member to redeem at any home league match of their choice, along with other vouchers for discounts on stadium tours and the home shirt.  Junior Blues members can also purchase a home mascot place at a lower cost, and apply to be a mascot at an away ground (away mascot places are free of charge). 

Junior Blues memberships can be purchased in the Planet Blue store or online [www.itfcdirect.com] which incurs an additional delivery charge of ÂŁ3.99.            

Mascot and Fly the Flag Experience

Ipswich Town offer two match day experiences for children to take part in, these being the mascot experience and our fly the flag experience.  The Mascot Experience costs ÂŁ200 to Junior Blues members and ÂŁ230 to non-members.  The package includes a full home or away kit and four free match tickets, one of which has to be for the mascot.

Our Fly the Flag Experiencecosts ÂŁ30 and this enables children to be part of the action on match days as they are on and around the pitch prior to kick off, and take part in a mini-tour, a flag parade and a guard of honour with the flags to welcome the teams on to the pitch.

Accommodation

Portman Road has over 300 spaces for disabled supporters and carers in 9 different positions. Concessions are offered in these areas for disabled supporters in receipt of Disability Living Allowance (DLA) at medium or higher levels or the new PIP’s at enhanced or standard levels.

The majority of our hospitality areas also have disabled access.  More information can be obtained on hospitality suitable for disabled supporters by contacting the Sales Team on 01473 400594 orsales@itfc.co.uk.  Disabled customers utilising hospitality areas would be required to complete and return a Personal Emergency Evacuation Plan (PEEP) form prior to arrival.

Car Parking

There are approximately 50 car parking spaces designated for match day use by disabled supporters in the local authority’s public car park and these spaces are allocated on the day on a first come, first served basis. 

In addition, there are a small number of reserved car parking spaces available on a matchday for home and away supporters.  These can be booked via the contacts shown below.

Supporter’s Club

There is an active disabled supporter’s club, ITDSA.  Full details can be found on the Club’s official website on www.itfc.co.uk.

Contacts

For more information or to book tickets call Warner Duff, Disability Liaison Officer on 01473 400556 or e-mail disability@itfc.co.uk

Ipswich Town Football Club is committed to confronting and eliminating discrimination whether by reason of gender, age, sexual orientation, race, nationality, ethnic origin, colour, religion or disability.

The Club will not tolerate sexual or racial based harassment or any other discriminatory behaviour, whether physical or verbal, and will work to ensure that such behaviour is met with appropriate disciplinary action in whatever context it occurs.

The Club fully supports the English Football League and The Football Association in their commitment to develop a programme of discrimination awareness training to promote the eradication of discrimination.  

The Club is an equal opportunities employer. All employees will receive equal treatment regardless of colour, race, nationality or ethnic origin, religion, sex, age, marital status or political views. 

The Club has a dedicated text messaging service for supporters to be able to report on any discrimination issue at a match, including during the game.  It goes direct to the control room and will ensure that no one reporting inappropriate behaviour need be fearful of recrimination.  STAMP IT OUT  = 07834 439 429.

Ipswich Town Football Club expects all members of staff to conduct themselves in accordance with the highest ethical standards and to carry out their duties with integrity and professionalism.

We are committed to briefing staff on key issues so that they have sufficient knowledge to answer the majority of supporters’ queries.  

Supporters who are abusive to staff members may be subject to ejection from the stadium; under certain circumstances a Club ban may be implemented.

Information

 

The Club’s official website www.itfc.co.uk, twitter page @Official_ITFC and facebook page www.facebook.com/officialitfc  are updated daily to ensure all news, information and its position on major policy issues reaches our customers as soon as possible.. 

In addition,www.numberonevenue.co.ukis a dedicated website for information on hospitality, conferencing and events at ITFC.

On a match day our programme and public address system both inside and outside the stadium gives up to the minute information on ticketing and events. Portman Pals are in attendance to assist our Supporters in and around the stadium.

 

The press and media are fully briefed on a regular basis by the Club’s Press Office

 

Full details on ticketing, membership ticket priority, etc is sent to all Season Ticket holders and members prior to the start of the season.

Ground Regulations

Full details of our Ground Regulations can be viewed at

http://www.itfc.co.uk/club/ground_regulations/ 

Consultation

The Club is committed to a policy of continual improvement in the service it offers its customers and actively seeks and encourages feedback to aid this quest through the following:

  • Via the feedback feature on the Club’s official website at www.itfc.co.uk
  • Regular meetings with the official Supporters Club & Branch Representatives.
  • Via feedback with the Disabled Supporters Liaison Officer.
  • The Senior Executive Team liaise regularly with Supporter Groups.
  • Supporters’ Forum – a cross section of supporters meet with key members of the Club’s management team on a regular basis to discuss Club issues and policies under the guidance of the SLO
  • English Football League customer service assessments.
  • Match day questionnaires on specific topics

At Ipswich Town Football Club we take great pride in our community. We understand that just like the support we receive from our fans; our support can make a real difference to individual causes, local schools and charitable organisations, whether it’s backing a campaign, promoting an event or donating a prize to aid fundraising.

Over the past few years, there has been a huge increase in the demand put upon the Club to support charitable causes from local level through to national campaigns. As with any business, limitations on staff, budgets and resources does mean that we are restricted on the level of support we can offer. With this in mind, we have developed a number of community projects and charitable partnerships in which we centre our efforts. 

Matchday Programme & Scoreboard Messages

If you would like to include a personal message in the matchday programme to mark an event such as a birthday, congratulatory, welcome or a bereavement, please email some words and a photo (where appropriate) to grant.pringle@itfc.co.uk.

The deadline for programme entries is 12 days prior to the match.

If you would like to include a message on the matchday scoreboard please email enquiries@itfc.co.uk. Please note messages are short due to a limitation on characters (i.e. happy [age] birthday [name]) with the deadline for scoreboard messages 24 hours prior to kick-off.

Autographs & Signed Merchandise 
Due to the volume of requests the Club receives, we aren't in a position to accommodate requests for autographs, signed merchandise or items sent in to be signed by the manager or players. This is inclusive of charity requests.

The Club sell a range of signed merchandise via ITFC Direct and the official ITFC online auction website www.itfcauction.com . For more information about this service, details of products on offer or to place an order please email planetblue@itfc.co.uk

Alternatively, an area outside our main reception is put aside for autographs after most Saturday home games. This area can be accessed after the game via the main entrance on Constantine Road. No ticket purchase is required. 

Charitable Requests

The number of requests we receive far outweighs those that we are able to help.  We have a charitable policy which aids us in delivering assistance to registered charities in our locality for more details please consult our Club website. All requests will be required in writing, not by email or by phone.

Bereavement 

It’s always sad to hear that a member of the Ipswich Town family is no longer with us and we always try our best to provide support to family and friends at this difficult time.

As we have lots of caring fans who would like to involve ITFC in service arrangements we offer the loan of a custom-made Ipswich Town coffin drape for funeral services which can be borrowed for up to seven days. We require a ÂŁ250 cash deposit, payable on collection from our main reception, which will be refunded in full when the drape is returned to us in the same condition.

Please contact our main reception between 09:30-16:30 Monday to Thursday on (01473) 400500 or by emailing enquries@itfc.co.uk to arrange.

Replica Kit

Information on replica strip life span will be displayed in merchandise stores, on swing tickets and via the online shopping service.

Online Ordering

Merchandise is available online atwww.itfcdirect.comwith a General Enquiries Service to answer queries from stock availability to order despatch dates status on 01473 400501.

We promise to despatch goods on a next working day basis when ordered before 3:00pm (GMT), with the exception of goods currently out of stock and during the busy Christmas period when we promise to despatch a soon as possible if not within the standard timescales.  N.B. The Club cannot be held responsible for delays incurred through the actions of the postal service or couriers.

Return/Refunds 

The Club will offer refunds on any item within 28 (twenty eight) days from the date of receipt in its original condition and packaging for a refund of the price you paid for the item. Postage costs will not be refunded, should the item not be faulty.

Faulty, mistakenly picked items or damaged in transit items will be fully refunded, or exchanged, at the customer’s request, including a full refund of any postage paid. In this instance the Club will require the customer to send the item back for inspection, upon which the refund/exchange will be processed.

Items can be returned to the Club’s Portman Road store. Customer should ensure they have a proof of purchase receipt to avoid disappointment in being unable to obtain a refund/exchange. Goods being returned must be in original packaging, with tags and be in a re-saleable condition, unless faulty.

Returns for personalised product will only be accepted if the personalisation is incorrect from the receipt of the customer order or if the product is faulty. The Club cannot refund personalised purchases for sizing errors. Customers should refer to the size charts on the Club website and available in-store to ensure the correct size prior to purchasing a personalised product.

The Club recommend that customers use a recorded delivery service to return products as we cannot be held responsible for goods not being received.

The Club will not refund goods that are not received back to us within the 28 (twenty eight) day refund period.

Online purchases can be mailed back to the Club at the following address: 
Ipswich Town Online Store, Returns Department, Portman Road, Ipswich, Suffolk, IP1 2DA

Exchanges

Customers requiring an exchange, will be required to pay for the return shipping costs to return the item to the Club. We recommend using a secure method. The Club do not refund this charge. Customers should include their exchange request, the original delivery note and the merchandise in any package they return to the club address above.

Exceptions to our returns policy

  • All DVDs, CD's, underwear, swimwear, pierced jewellery and items specifically manufactured to a customer’s order can only be refunded or exchanged if the goods are deemed to be faulty.
  • The Club are unable to refund or exchange a personalised product once it has been printed with either a player's name and number or a custom name and number; this still applies in the event of a player leaving the club and/or changing his squad number. There are strictly no exceptions to this policy. Ipswich Town Football Club will not be held responsible for the length of time a player is at the club following personalisation of products. A refund or exchange will be permitted if the product is deemed faulty. 

8. Community Activities

The Club remains totally committed to grass roots football development involving football participation, training and coaching provided by our Advanced Coaching Programme for boys and girls from 6 to 16 years of age.

Our emphasis is on encouraging boys and girls to enjoy themselves and to take part in all football related activities. We ensure that all those who participate in any activity will receive the same high standard of coaching, tuition and professionalism irrespective of age, sex, ethnic background or ability.  All of our activities are delivered by experienced FA qualified coaches and all staff working unsupervised with children have completed an enhanced level CRB (Criminal Records Bureau) check. 

The Club recognises its responsibility with reference to all customer information on our databases. All information is stored confidentially in accordance with the Data Protection Act (1998) and no data is issued or sold without prior consent.

ITFC have introduced a continual assessment programme for stewarding personnel which will be carried out by the Stewards’ Training Officer and Assessors.  In the event of developmental needs being identified appropriate training, instruction and/or courses will be undertaken.  We have a number of Stewards training for the NVQ in Customer Care.

If any customer has a complaint or query we encourage them to contact Customer Service at the Club, preferably by letter or email.  All complaints and responses are logged on the Club’s customer database. Whilst our aim will be to resolve a complaint as soon as possible we do give an assurance that we will respond within a maximum of 7 working days.

Should any customer not receive an answer to a complaint or is not satisfied with the answer given to that complaint then they can take the matter further by contacting the

Independent Football Ombudsman (IFO).  Contact information for the IFO is:

The Independent Football Ombudsman

Suite 49

33 Great George Street

Leeds     LS1 3AJ

Email: contact@theifo.co.uk

Website: www.theifo.co.uk

Telephone: 0800 588 4066 [voicemail]

The designated Supporter Liaison Officer (SLO), Sally Webb. The assistant SLO is Liz Edwards, who is also Chairman of the Ipswich Town Supporters Club. If you need to contact either of these personnel please call 01473 400500. 

All clubs have an SLO following the Culture Media and Sports Select Committee review of Football and it is now a requirement for English Football League Clubs to appoint a Supporter Liaison Officer, whose role includes the responsibility of the delivery of the Club’s policy with regard to supporters, acts as a point of contact for fans and liaises with the Club’s management on pertinent issues. 

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