A pop-up shop generated record sales over the holiday period for Wrexham AFC, it’s been revealed.
Takings were up by 20 per cent over the previous year after the temporary outlet opened at the town’s Eagles Meadow Shopping Centre
The shop has just closed after a bumper time during the run up to Christmas and into the New Year.
The fans couldn’t get enough of the kits, beanie hats, footballs, calendars and the host of other club-related items.
Topping the best-seller list was the club’s iconic 2017/18 home shirt.
According to the club’s commercial manager, Geoff Scott, the 20 per cent increase was largely down to the club’s amazing supporters and the volunteers who helped run the shop.
He said: “The support we get from the Wrexham public and local businesses is amazing. I’m really pleased with how things have gone this last Christmas and to be 20 per cent up on sales is amazing and testament to a lot of hard work.
“Eagles Meadow is a fantastic venue and we have been so well looked after. I know how much our volunteers have enjoyed working at the shopping centre and I suspect Greggs will notice a drop in profits after we close up for another year!
“We have also had amazing support from local business. The Village Bakery donated 3,500 mince pies to us and they were given out for a small donation to our Build the Budget Appeal.
“That money is ring-fenced and will go to the club to hopefully improve the playing side of things.”
He added: “It’s wonderful to have a club shop at Eagles Meadow in the run up to Christmas and the New Year but it really wouldn’t be possible without our amazing volunteers.
“They have given up their time to help the club they love and we couldn’t be more grateful. They really are an amazing team and we are very lucky to have such dedicated supporters.”
Liverpool University law student Anya Gardner, 22, of Ponciau gave up much of her Christmas break to volunteer at the temporary Eagles Meadow club shop.
She said: “I’ve really enjoyed it. My mum, Annette, is a huge supporter and got me into going to games. I don’t go to as many as she does as I’m over in Liverpool most of the time.
“I wanted to help out and volunteered at the Eagles Meadow shop for the full Christmas period. It’s been fantastic and really busy. I think fans liked not having to go to the ground which is a bit out of the way to buy their Christmas presents.”
Retired IT consultant, Dave Weaver, 62, a Wrexham FC supporter for more than 55 years, says he enjoyed volunteering at the club shop.
He said: “It’s been really busy especially with fans wanting home and away shirts but we’ve sold a lot of beanie and bobble hats, calendars, track suits the whole range really.
“Wrexham is my club and I want to support it any way I can. It’s been great beinjg down at Eagles Meadow and meeting so many fans. We have had a great reception and it’s been fantastic. I’ll hopefully be back next year if we have another pop-up club shop.”
Wrexham fan of 44 years Keith ‘Fuzzy’ Jones, 55, says while he can’t score goals on the pitch for his beloved club he can help in other ways and volunteering at the club shop had been a wonderful experience.
Fuzzy, a retired HSBC Commercial Officer, said: “It’s just about doing something for the club I love. I’ve been here throughout the Christmas period volunteering and I’ve loved every minute of it.
“Eagles Meadow is an amazing centre and we have had a wonderful reception. The support from Wrexham fans has been amazing. It’s saved fans having to go to the ground to buy presents and I think that has been appreciated.”
He said: “We have also sold raffle tickets for the big Christmas draw at the shop with all proceeds going to the club’s Build the Budget campaign. That alone has been worth it as the fund, which is ring fenced for the club to spend on playing staff, is growing every day.”
Eagles Meadow manager Kevin Critchley was pleased to be able to help the club by allowing the use of a vacant unit at the centre.
He said: “Wrexham Football Club is important to the town and we were delighted to be able to show our support. I pleased to hear that sales are 20 per cent up on last year which is really good news.
“I know how much fans enjoyed visiting the shop and buying Christmas presents or new home or away shirts for themselves.
“Hopefully the club can win promotion back into the Football League this season and we can say that Eagles Meadow played a small part in what would be a wonderful success story.”