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  • Feedback on Saturday’s Big Screen Event

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    CEO Neil Sears has made the following response following Saturday’s play-off final Big Screen event at Gigg Lane:

    We have now had a couple of days digest the result of Saturday, and we have seen the many comments posted around the live stream broadcast on the Big Screen Gigg Lane on Saturday.

    I think its important that we as a club provide some background and add some context around getting the event on.

    After our victory in Tuesday’s semi-final, it soon became apparent that many fans would be unable to get a ticket for the game on Saturday.  We didn’t want supporters to miss out and after seeing many suggestions calling for the club to do something, we decided to look into hiring a big screen to show the event at Gigg Lane. This was not easy with only 48 hours notice and was organised at the same time as arranging a ballot for tickets.

    In order to execute this, we had a number of things to consider: Our security for any such event, catering options, liaising with the police and also getting the opposition’s permission to stream.

    We also needed to consider the size of the screen and also how many fans could realistically attend and see such a screen.  As many of you will know, we don’t normally stream away matches, but due to the enormity of the game we decided to try.

    We hired the biggest screen that we could source within the timescales we were working within. Research indicated that a strong 4G data signal was available in the area of Ericstan Park, but we made a calculated gamble that it was worth the risk.  If we hadn’t had done this, supporters would rightly have asked why we had not tried to do something. However, on arrival at the ground, the signal whilst strong for downloading, was relatively poor for uploading data. This aspect is necessary for broadcasting a live stream, and on this occasion the systems did not have the capability to operate at the level the team requierd.

    We were aware that the steam kept buffering as a result, and this must have been very frustrating. Whilst the team attempted reducing the quality of the picture to keep the stream live and consistent, this was only so successful and resulted in large parts of the game being unwatchable. The team, both at the game in Wythenshawe and back at Gigg Lane, did all they could in trying circumstances.

    As a club when we put this event on, we were not doing it to make money. This event was delivered to be ‘cost neutral’ to ensure that the supporters could watch the game, so we are as disappointed as you when we ran into problems.  However, by all account the atmosphere was fantastic and the food and drink seemed to go down well, we also ensured that the players came back to thank you for the support you gave them for the season.

    We thank you for supporting and interacting with this event, and drawing from this experience will enable us to hold more events like this in future. We also thank those dedicated volunteers who again gave up their time to help make the event run smoothly, in some cases foregoing an actual ticket for the game to make this happen.

    We literally would not be able to get these events on for supporters without this assistance – a big thank you!

    We have postponed the next CEO Q&A session until ahead of the new season in July, as there is a lot to get through in the next few weeks to prepare for this. We are also looking at details for another Fans Forum over the summer and this will be communicated to supporters when venue and dates have been fixed.

    If you have a question that you wish to have an answer to, or any feedback on the above, please send them in via the usual method of clicking below and these will be included in the next session:

    #ShakersTogether | #BuryFC | #PartofIt

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