Weston-super-Mare 'need more supporters' as they look to move forward

PUBLISHED: 08:41 15 August 2016 | UPDATED: 08:41 15 August 2016

Shawn McCoulsky celebrates scoring against Whitehawk. Picture by Wayne Whitworth.

Shawn McCoulsky celebrates scoring against Whitehawk. Picture by Wayne Whitworth.

Archant

Weston-super-Mare may need up to 1,000 fans through the turnstiles every week to help achieve the club's ambitions, according to the club's chairman.

The Seagulls hosted a question and answer session at The Woodspring Stadium yesterday (Sunday) which gave fans the chance to have their say.

Chairman Paul Bliss – who recently celebrated thirty years at the helm – sat alongside director of football Jon Haile and Head Coach Ryan Northmore on the panel.

A host of issues were discussed but Northmore was praised for his hand in the Seagulls excellent start in National League South, with the Seagulls maintaining their 100 per cent record away at newly-relegated Welling on Saturday.

The 2-0 victory at Park View Road followed an impressive opening-day win at The Woodspring Stadium –in which they saw off promotion-favourites Whitehawk 3-1 - and then a derby showdown at Bath City.
The Seagulls snatched all three points at Twerton Park and now sit top of the table, which has unsurprisingly left Northmore in high spirits.

He said: “We changed the pre-season schedule and the games we played. Training was more focused and that really benefited us going in to the season.

“I looked at the fixtures and thought ‘that’s a tricky start’. We now have to keep the momentum going forward.”

While the positive start on the pitch was a hot topic, the club’s low attendances were a growing concern for many supporters.

Weston have struggled to pull in crowds in recent years, with an average of around 236 heading to The Woodspring Stadium last season.

Paul Bliss said: “We need 500 to 1000 people through the gates every week. It is up to us on the board to work on marketing and other things. We need more supporters.

“But I believe we can do it. It makes a difference having fans making a noise.”

A group of supporters are also keen to up the following away from home, and a group of fans have requested a piece of editorial in the match-day programme about creating a supporters’ club.

The club have now responded to the enquiry and a supporters’ club could be created in the next few weeks.

Shawn McCoulsky in action for Weston. Picture by Wayne Whitworth.Shawn McCoulsky in action for Weston. Picture by Wayne Whitworth.

Northmore said: “It makes a difference when you have 20 or 30 people away from home and we appreciate it.”

The supporters who have watched the Seagulls this season have been treated to four goals from Bristol City striker Shawn McCoulsky and were keen to find out how long they will be able to hold on to him.

His current loan deal will keep him at The Woodspring Stadium until October but Haile assured fans this could be lengthened.

He said: “The thing is, here he is playing. As long as Bristol City see he is playing, there is no reason it can’t be extended. They have signed a striker from Chelsea who is playing. They want him in a good place and with a good coach.”

Weston will be hoping McCoulsky can add to his tally on Tuesday night when the Seagulls host Poole Town at The Woodspring Stadium.

Can Weston stay at the top of the National League South? Kick-off is at 7:45pm and the Mercury will have all the reaction, including an exclusive interview with Ryan Northmore after the match.

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