Since its formation in 1952, the Lincoln & District Football Supporters Club have raised well over £1.6 million.
Originally founded as the Lincoln City Supporters Club, the principal objective of the supporters club was to raise money for the Football Club, and their first donation was £50 for a new playing kit in August 1952.
The supporters club handed over £1,500 for concrete terracing on the Sincil Bank side and, in 1957, they paid for a roof to be put on the ‘Spion Kop’ section of the railway end. Three years later they embarked on a campaign to raise £16,000 to install floodlights at Sincil Bank.
Although membership peaked at 5,700, a downturn the team’s fortunes in the 1960s saw this figure decline, although their fundraising activities continued and by May 1959 more than £11,500 had been handed over to the parent club.
In 1961 former trade union official Ben Sullivan was appointed as a full-time organiser and this led to an increase in fundraising when he launched regular bingo sessions and took control of the lottery.
In September 1965, Sullivan took up a similar role with Newcastle United and he was replaced by Brian Baldam who, after over 50 years service has now retired.
Regular donations to the parent club continued, but a disagreement in the summer of 1973 saw the supporters club split from the parent club and renamed itself the Lincoln & District Football Supporters Club. A reconciliation took place soon after Dennis Bocock resigned as chairman of the Board in April 1974.
The club hired premises at the Drill Hall and the Lincoln Liberal Club, where the bingo sessions took place, whilst they also raised money via their Christmas Raffle and Grand National Sweepstake draws.
Their total donation to the Football Club reached £1 million in April 1991 and in November 2003, their ‘Double Chance Lottery’ was combined with the Football Club’s ‘Birthday Lotto’, which not only resulted in greater prize monies and the reduced running cost of only one lottery but it also brought in greater revenue to the Football Club.
In addition to their much valued fundraising, the Lincoln & District Football Supporters Club has also organised the ballot for the Football Club’s “Player of the Season” since it conception in the 1969/70 season which continues today
Due to COVID the bingo sessions which were still running on a Monday night at the football club are on hold but with the help of everyone will look to restart as soon as it is safe to do so as not only is the fund raising important but so is the mental wellbeing of all those who attend
Due to COVID and my dads recent retirement it’s vital we find a way to protect both the history and the excellent work L&DFSC continues to do today.
I’m personally delighted that the RICT have come forward to recognise this and invited myself to join their board and I have also become a Trust Member in recognition of our shared goals which is to safeguard our beloved Lincoln City Football Club and the community.
The Trust have offered their full backing and support to assist L&DFSC in its continued efforts to raise funds through the bingo and with the organising of the much loved Player Of The Season Awards whilst respecting its identity going forward
With this in mind it has been decided to transfer the shareholding that L&DFSC currently has in Lincoln City FC to RICT as this will make both organisations stronger going forward with the RICT as the safest place to protect them.
This isn’t the end of L&DFSC but the start of a new chapter in its history.
Up The Imps
(photos courtesy Chris Baldam)