‘Isn’t it ironic?’ sang Alanis Morissette in her aptly titled hit song ‘Ironic’ as she listed a series of bizarre events. Those events were actually examples more of bad fortune than irony, which I suppose in a way is…ironic.
Our Trust experienced an ironic event last Saturday when our attractive display showing a 60-year history of Imps programmes was fitted and on show for the first time in the Red Imp bar in the GBM stand. I’m biased but it’s an attractive bit of kit and I’m sure it’ll create some interest as fans look back on programme styles over the decades.
The irony factor is that we have provided this visual celebration as part of the heritage remit we like to have, and it was revealed at the first game in club’s history where a match programme wasn’t printed and sold.
The reasoning behind this move has been well documented. Only a tiny proportion of supporters have been buying a programme and the accounts show a significant financial loss when comparing matchday magazine costs and income. This has been a disappointing move for some fans, but on the evidence of face-to-face views at pre-season games and at the first competitive home game last weekend most people accept the decision. More and more Football League clubs are adopting this approach and at Lincoln City a ‘Team-sheet Plus’ is available each home fixture which is at least a sort of memento of the day.
Our display shows the programme front covers from 1960 to 2020. We have picked out many that are really significant. Highly important fixtures, local derbies, and ones with heroes such as Richard Butcher, Keith Alexander, and Matt Reid are there. Tyler Walker features on one too, from his first spell here.
The Red Imps bar is well used but if our board proves popular we could print another for show in another part of the ground. We also have some A3 sized posters of it available at the Red Imps Community Trust stand in the Fan Village if anyone wishes to have one of their own.
As I say, we like to contribute to the growing awareness of our club’s history and our on-line museum has been doing that for some time. The programme display is another contribution, and watch out for another really good way we’ll be commemorating the history of Lincoln City in the coming weeks. Watch this space!