Kidderminster Harriers have detailed the significant financial challenges facing the club ahead of next season.
In an open letter, supporters have been given an update on plans regarding season tickets bought for the curtailed campaign just gone.
Like so many clubs, Harriers had embarked upon the 2020/21 season in the National League North with the belief that grant funding would cover its duration.
As part of the update, the club explain: “We are also forecasting a downturn in income for the upcoming season, as we face financial pressures from our fanbase and our commercial sponsors to make good on monies paid for the 2020/21 season where, due to the combined impact of lockdown restrictions and the season being cut short, full value could not be realised. As a board, we have taken all steps available to us to try and mitigate the negative impact of the global pandemic on our club.
“We have tried to reduce our costs as far as practical in a season where all our fixtures have been played behind closed doors. We have also sought to maximise as much support as we could from the Government initiatives, for which we were eligible.
“Despite these measures, the club remains in a tough financial position.”
Apologising to supporters for the delay in making a statement over season tickets, the club add: “The board have been thinking long and hard about the approach to take. However, there is no clear solution that both supports the club’s sustainability and also supports our fans’ rights to receive a service they have paid for.
“In an ideal world, all fans who purchased a season ticket should be refunded in full. The truth is that the amounts paid for season tickets has been utilised during the season to help meet the costs that arose up to the date that the season was declared null and void.
“Despite the board taking the measures mentioned above, the club will report a loss for the 2020/21 season. This loss will be doubled if, in the ideal world, all season ticket holders are refunded in full.
“If season tickets are rolled over to next season, then our ability to generate income to the level required to cover forecasted future deficits is severely restricted. As a result of the conflict the board faces between what is the morally-right action to take with season ticket monies and what is commercially the right action to take to support the longevity of our club, we feel it is vital to have supporters input into the decision the club takes.”