National Lottery players across the country, including those from the local area are being given the chance to watch their local football teams for free as a thank you for the over £12.5million of National Lottery funding which helped these community clubs survive when the Covid pandemic struck and football at this level effectively shut down. The National Lottery Football Weekends campaign will make over 100,000 tickets available on a ‘BuyOneGetOneFree’ basis for National Lottery players for selected matches in March and April, including at Glenavon FC. It aims to get people out to watch and really get behind their local team, perhaps for the first time, and experience the vital role these clubs play as part of the local community. Thanks to National Lottery players, during the height of the Covid crisis a total support package of over £12.5 million from The National Lottery was made available and proved vital for many local clubs across England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, including Glenavon, to survive the loss of essential matchday revenue as football shut down. The National Lottery Football Weekends is to thank National Lottery players for stepping up when they were needed the most. The special ‘Buy One Get One Free’ ticket offer will be available to National Lottery players for a game at one of the 231 participating clubs in England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland. The ticket offer will apply to the Glenavon FC home match, taking place on 19th March.
The campaign will be delivered in partnership with the Vanarama National League, The FA(Football Association), The Scottish FA (Scottish Football Association) FAW (Football Association of Wales) and the IFA (Northern Ireland Football Association) and is also backed by well-known ex-footballers Ally McCoist and Karen Carne.
A Glenavon FC spokesperson said, “It was a difficult time for so many during the pandemic and it felt like our club had a bleak future at times. To have National Lottery players step in and help us survive through getting fans back through the gates will be a great way to celebrate the support and the importance of clubs like ours and to give people the chance to sample the unique experience of football at this level. We can’t wait to welcome people to our Mourneview Park.”
The National Lottery has always played a vital role in supporting elite, community and grassroot sport in the UK. Including football, The National Lottery has invested more than£5.7 billion into grassroots sport since it was established in 1994. In the last year nearly £395million was given to grassroots and elite sport good causes, funding everything from facilities to playing fields and creating opportunities for everyone to get active and improve their lives through sport.
There are other opportunities for National Lottery players in March. The National Lottery Open Week takes place between 19th-27thMarch to say thank you for the more than £30 million raised every week by National Lottery players. Open Week unlocks free entry and exclusive discounts for National Lottery players at a range of participating venues including galleries, museums, gardens, historic castles and sports stadiums. Full Ts&Cs apply and are available at www.nationallotteryopenweek.com.
Lottery tickets can be redeemed at the Club Office Monday to Thursday 9.30 to 12.30 and from 8.30 to 3pm on Friday on production of a valid season ticket card, or when purchasing a match ticket. Lottery tickets are also redeemable at the turnstile.
NIFL T&C’s can be viewed here.