Everything you need to know about Town's home strip availability
The 2021/22 home shirt is the fastest selling Town shirt in the last 10 years, with sales up by a staggering 70 per cent on last season.
With season ticket sales heading for the highest number in six years, it’s an indication of the support and anticipation behind the Club as Town enter a new era under the Gamechanger 20 ownership.
"I want to thank the supporters for backing us," said new Town CEO, Mark Ashton.
"To have shirt sales up 70 per cent is fantastic and season ticket sales are going great as well.
"Our retail and ticket office staff are working around the clock to deal with the demand so I want to take this opportunity to thank them as well. It’s exciting times for the Football Club."
The Club website spoke to head of retail operations, Paul Macro, to get the lowdown on shirt sales; the Ed Sheeran factor; working in a global pandemic and why supporters won’t miss out when the inevitable happens and the shelves are empty…
Busy then, Paul! You must be delighted with sales…
It’s been incredible. I haven’t seen a year like it. To put the figures into context, we’ve sold the majority of shirts on pre-order that during a normal season we’d expect to cover us until the end of the year.
Ed Sheeran is the shirt sponsor, has that made a big difference?
The announcement went global didn’t it and we have had an increase in international orders certainly but the vast majority of sales have still been to supporters who were already registered with us but hadn’t necessarily made a purchase in the last three or four years. The feeling around the Club after the takeover; the summer signings, the Euros - it’s all combined to ignite the fanbase I think.
If shirt sales are 70 per cent up and the highest for 10 years, have you got enough shirts in stock?
It’s probably surprising for the majority of our supporters to learn that all of our shirt orders have to be placed at the end of December. So we have to try and forecast six months in advance the position we think we’re going to be in when we launch the kit. Obviously it was a very different situation back then. Fast forward to March/April and the Club has had a takeover and a global superstar announced as shirt sponsor. "We’re going to need a lot more shirts!" were the words uttered at that point! Within a few days we had further orders going into adidas. However, the stock doesn’t sit in a warehouse waiting for us to order it. There are bespoke elements to our home shirt which means it’s completely made to order. That process (from point of order to stock delivery) under usual circumstances is a 16-20 week manufacture time. Throw into that factory lockdowns due to the pandemic and it does become a challenging situation.
So what’s the situation at the moment with availability?
It’s looking likely that we’ll have a short period within the next week or two when we won’t have stock of some sizes of our adult shirt. We’ll continue to offer a pre-order during that period and fulfil all orders once we have the stock available. The first of our top-up orders placed back in the spring is due to land around mid-August with further drops in September.
So fans won’t miss out on a shirt then?
Not at all. Anyone who has already pre-ordered will get their shirt by the middle of next week. If there is a period without stock we’ll continue to offer pre-orders and anyone who places an order at that point will be guaranteed their shirt. As I said, it’s a challenge but we are meeting it and it’s a sign of the excitement around the Club at the moment.