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Harry Stottle

Is the Summer Bash destined to be a flop?

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2 minutes ago, Dave T said:

It would be interesting to understand how many weekend tickets are sold versus day tickets, but I suspect the number of two-dayers is more than you would think.

That isn't evidence based though, purely that whenever I go, it isn't just the fans from the 6 teams playing that are there. 

Also, the hotels being packed and bloody expensive suggests that a fair few are happy to make a weekend of it.

I would also suspect that two-day tickets are so cheap for season ticket holders that they may buy them and not bother even using them on the day their team wasn't playing (a bit like Disney 7-day park tickets). I bought 4 tickets for the World Cup PNG game at Headingley in 2013 and just didn't bother using two of them. They were like a tenner each.

Edited by Scubby

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1 minute ago, scotchy1 said:

There is 3k sold for the summer bash. Some of those will go to both anyway as neutrals. I just think it would end up with diluted magic weekend carrying a summer bash that doesn't really work.

I'm not sure what the risk is (apart from the TV broadcasting which would likely kill it as an idea before it started).

I would expect the overlap between the two events over consecutive weekends to be relatively limited, but this would appeal to more of those fans who would watch a 2nd day of SL/Championship, but have little desire to watch 2 days in the same ground. It is probably my only criticism of Magic, that because they do little entertainment, the 2nd day just feels like more of the same. This would add some variety. Like a proper festival.

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1 minute ago, Dave T said:

Bit of a mixed message there. These cheap places are bucking the trend in many places and doing very well for themselves.

I'm not sure why the suggestion is bizarre - ever tried going to a festival, they have loads of different events all over the place to cater for a wider range of people.

Festivals erect more stages because they are expanding and selling loads more tickets each year. Magic is selling less than it did 3 years ago in Newcastle. I would suspect that trend won't be bucked this year either - Sunday could be a disappointing showing again.

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4 minutes ago, Scubby said:

I would also suspect that two-day tickets are so cheap for season ticket holders that they may buy them and not bother even using them on the day their team wasn't playing (a bit like Disney 7-day park tickets). I bought 4 tickets for the World Cup PNG game at Headingley in 2013 and just didn't bother using two of them. They were like a tenner each.

There will always be that risk at a booze-heavy weekend. I have done the above. But everyone who will have bought one will have had the intention of using it or giving it to somebody to use. So that isn't really an issue.

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Last years summer bash i stayed over till the Tuesday & bought the local paper on the Monday nothing in it about the two day event just been held at Bloomfield Road.

The event wants publicized around Blackpool plus where was all the merchandise around the ground? i would loved to have bought a Blackpool Bash shirt to wear around Devon/Cornwall when i went to local rugby games but nothing need to push it this year to improve the attendance for the weekend.

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12 minutes ago, Scubby said:

Festivals erect more stages because they are expanding and selling loads more tickets each year. Magic is selling less than it did 3 years ago in Newcastle. I would suspect that trend won't be bucked this year either - Sunday could be a disappointing showing again.

I think you are being overly negative on this one Scubby.

Have you considered that this *may* be the size of the market for this event, certainly what they are prepared to invest in. 

A couple of stats to try and cheer you up:

Newcastle average 67.1k

This is higher than Manchester (63.4k)- a ground in the heartlands that had 7 games versus Newcastle's 6. Cardiff averaged 60.7k and Edinburgh 55.9k.

It should always be remembered that this is an away SL game for all clubs - to get an average of 5.6k per club in Newcastle is decent.

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22 minutes ago, Dave T said:

I'm not sure what the risk is (apart from the TV broadcasting which would likely kill it as an idea before it started).

I would expect the overlap between the two events over consecutive weekends to be relatively limited, but this would appeal to more of those fans who would watch a 2nd day of SL/Championship, but have little desire to watch 2 days in the same ground. It is probably my only criticism of Magic, that because they do little entertainment, the 2nd day just feels like more of the same. This would add some variety. Like a proper festival.

I really can't see that there is a big market out there that don't go to the magic weekend but would if there were some championship rugby. It seems like a solution to a problem that doesn't exist

As you say the second day is often more of the same but now we are maybe offering a third day with the extra content being an inferior level of the same. 

Far better that we actually recalibrate the magic weekend to what it is which is a celebration of RL and look at what we can provide that links with that and we look again at another solution for getting the championship on Tv which is what the summer bash is for.

I also think we need to remember that magic and the summer bash are primarily made for tv. Getting every RL fan to attend somewhat defeats the point

Edited by scotchy1

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6 minutes ago, scotchy1 said:

I really can't see that there is a big market out there that don't go to the magic weekend but would if there were some championship rugby. It seems like a solution to a problem that doesn't exist

As you say the second day is often more of the same but now we are maybe offering a third day with the extra content being an inferior level of the same. 

Far better that we actually recalibrate the magic weekend to what it is which is a celebration of RL and look at what we can provide that links with that and we look again at another solution for getting the championship on Tv which is what the summer bash is for.

I also think we need to remember that magic and the summer bash are primarily made for tv. Getting every RL fan to attend somewhat defeats the point

I don't think the problem is with Magic Weekend - I was illustrating my point by using Magic as it is the one I regularly attend.

I think there is a benefit of taking over a city on a larger scale, with bigger fanzones, spread across a couple of grounds. and I suspect the cumulative total would be for the two events individually.

I'm comfortable with Magic with tweaks (including changing the horrible name!), but I have long championed it becoming more of an RL festival, bringing all the fans together. I thought it would have worked well at somewhere like Murrayfield where they have huge communal areas and potentially two grounds in future, or Man City, which is similar, albeit with more concrete.

People do like to move in and out of the stadium, and I think just like a music festival, they would appreciate the freedom to see different games, plus an uplift in effort on things like the music.

But the problem here is Summer Bash, if it completely bombs this year, there is a chance of it either being scrapped, or being moved to Halifax!

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18 minutes ago, Dave T said:

I think you are being overly negative on this one Scubby.

Have you considered that this *may* be the size of the market for this event, certainly what they are prepared to invest in. 

A couple of stats to try and cheer you up:

Newcastle average 67.1k

This is higher than Manchester (63.4k)- a ground in the heartlands that had 7 games versus Newcastle's 6. Cardiff averaged 60.7k and Edinburgh 55.9k.

It should always be remembered that this is an away SL game for all clubs - to get an average of 5.6k per club in Newcastle is decent.

Nope it is what it is because we put a half-arsed effort into promoting it locally. We saw 30k roll into St James Park for a single fixture in a different code a couple of weeks ago. We send tens of thousands of travelling fans to the North East each year which should bolster the local attendees at the game there not replace it.

The RFL plan document aim was for Magic Day 1 to sell out.

In RL we have posted two great crowds for events with first up visit to venues recently - 40,871 for Day one Magic weekend 2015 and 44,393 for the Kiwis at the London Stadium (2015). How did we manage to turn that into 35,361 Magic Day 1 2017 (- 5,510) and 35,564 v Australia 4N 2016 (-8,829)? Probably because we just keep going into the well to the same old supporter base again and again and are not prepared to spend to grow in the locality.

Wembley is another event heading the same way. Other sports grow events from a starting point, we give up on them.

Edited by Scubby
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1 minute ago, Dave T said:

I don't think the problem is with Magic Weekend - I was illustrating my point by using Magic as it is the one I regularly attend.

I think there is a benefit of taking over a city on a larger scale, with bigger fanzones, spread across a couple of grounds. and I suspect the cumulative total would be for the two events individually.

I'm comfortable with Magic with tweaks (including changing the horrible name!), but I have long championed it becoming more of an RL festival, bringing all the fans together. I thought it would have worked well at somewhere like Murrayfield where they have huge communal areas and potentially two grounds in future, or Man City, which is similar, albeit with more concrete.

People do like to move in and out of the stadium, and I think just like a music festival, they would appreciate the freedom to see different games, plus an uplift in effort on things like the music.

But the problem here is Summer Bash, if it completely bombs this year, there is a chance of it either being scrapped, or being moved to Halifax!

I don't disagree that more needs to go on around it (an obvious suggestion is a food/beer festival around the stadium) but they have to be complementary rather than compete with the main attraction (legends 9s comp in between the games would be good aswell)

I honestly don't think there is any kind of market out there of people wanting something different from an SL game, that being a championship game. 

The championship just doesn't have the critical mass to make events like this successful. It needs to look again at what it can offer as a tv product because there is a niche for it.

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1 minute ago, Scubby said:

1 - Nope it is what it is because we put a half-arsed effort into promoting it locally.

2 - We saw 30k roll into St James Park for a single fixture in a different code a couple of weeks ago. We send tens of thousands of travelling fans to the North East each year which should bolster the local attendees at the game there.

The RFL plan document aim was for Magic Day 1 to sell out.

3 - In RL we have posted two great crowds for events with first up visit to venues recently - 40,871 for Day one Magic weekend 2015 and 44,393 for the Kiwis at the London Stadium (2015). How did we manage to turn that into 35,361 Magic Day 1 2017 (- 5,510) and 35,564 v Australia 4N 2016 (-8,829)? Probably because we just keep going into the well to the same old supporter base again and again and are not prepared to spend to grow.

Wembley is another event heading the same way.

1 - Just keep being angry because we don't get sellouts isn't that constructive though - what do they do in Newcastle for example? What more could they do to get a good return?

2 - Yes, a Newcastle team, played in Newcastle and got a great crowd and I expect they lost a fortune. Edinburgh Rugby have done similar and got 20k at Murrayfield - are their fans angry that Saracens got 4 times higher? These things are all unique.

3 - Novelty is always a useful tool, and personally I would like a different city used each year to keep it fresh - however year 2 at Newcastle was better, as was year 2 at Cardiff, as was Year 3 at Manchester. But I think we are talking a small number of thousand fluctuations here. Simple things like Bank Holidays, weather etc. can have an impact. We know scheduling was an issue with the Olympic Stadium and you won't hear me defend that, but this is about Summer Bash.

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4 minutes ago, scotchy1 said:

I don't disagree that more needs to go on around it (an obvious suggestion is a food/beer festival around the stadium) but they have to be complementary rather than compete with the main attraction (legends 9s comp in between the games would be good aswell)

I honestly don't think there is any kind of market out there of people wanting something different from an SL game, that being a championship game. 

The championship just doesn't have the critical mass to make events like this successful. It needs to look again at what it can offer as a tv product because there is a niche for it.

My point is that this grows Summer Bash as opposed to Magic. But some would be interested the other way too, particularly if in the same enclosure and you could nip in and out which I think would be the best model.

The Murrayfield Magic weekends were the best for me, in that the ground was suited perfectly for it (apart from the bloody cold) - we did have legends tag tournaments, an excellent fanzone and more entertainment outside, but those crowds were lower, so what do I know?!?! Newcastle fanzone is the worst ever but it is closer to the pubs. 

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1 minute ago, Dave T said:

1 - Just keep being angry because we don't get sellouts isn't that constructive though - what do they do in Newcastle for example? What more could they do to get a good return?

2 - Yes, a Newcastle team, played in Newcastle and got a great crowd and I expect they lost a fortune. Edinburgh Rugby have done similar and got 20k at Murrayfield - are their fans angry that Saracens got 4 times higher? These things are all unique.

3 - Novelty is always a useful tool, and personally I would like a different city used each year to keep it fresh - however year 2 at Newcastle was better, as was year 2 at Cardiff, as was Year 3 at Manchester. But I think we are talking a small number of thousand fluctuations here. Simple things like Bank Holidays, weather etc. can have an impact. We know scheduling was an issue with the Olympic Stadium and you won't hear me defend that, but this is about Summer Bash.

Being angry? Magic sell out Day 1 was one of the RFL's KPIs :D

Allowing Summer Bash to fizzle to tumbleweed tells us all we need to know. Going back to the well and hoping well supported clubs will rock up and make up for the half-baked attempts to achieve local ticket sales. It will be excruciating to watch and typifies the head in the sand approach. 

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28 minutes ago, Dave T said:

My point is that this grows Summer Bash as opposed to Magic. But some would be interested the other way too, particularly if in the same enclosure and you could nip in and out which I think would be the best model.

The Murrayfield Magic weekends were the best for me, in that the ground was suited perfectly for it (apart from the bloody cold) - we did have legends tag tournaments, an excellent fanzone and more entertainment outside, but those crowds were lower, so what do I know?!?! Newcastle fanzone is the worst ever but it is closer to the pubs. 

I don't think it would grow the summer bash. I honestly can't see a situation where extra people are going to this new dual weekend because it offers  both and even if it did I can't see people going get I'm bored of watching SL I'm off to a smaller stadium to watch the chanpionship. 

We would just end up spreading the exact same amount of people, thinner.

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30 minutes ago, scotchy1 said:

I don't think it would grow the summer bash. I honestly can't see a situation where extra people are going to this new dual weekend because it offers  both and even if it did I can't see people going get I'm bored of watching SL I'm off to a smaller stadium to watch the chanpionship. 

We would just end up spreading the exact same amount of people, thinner.

I disagree. Some people go for the package and this broadens the experience (particularly in those places with grounds next to each other - having to get a bus is a bit rubbish).

Summer Bash is hardly an attractive product for fans as things stand, putting this alongside Magic would undoubtedly make that more attractive.

I'm hoping to get to Magic this year and watching TWP and Toulouse is an additional draw for me. We see some people head to Newcastle games, just as they have headed to Crusaders in the past on the Friday night game.

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1 hour ago, Dave T said:

I disagree. Some people go for the package and this broadens the experience (particularly in those places with grounds next to each other - having to get a bus is a bit rubbish).

Summer Bash is hardly an attractive product for fans as things stand, putting this alongside Magic would undoubtedly make that more attractive.

I'm hoping to get to Magic this year and watching TWP and Toulouse is an additional draw for me. We see some people head to Newcastle games, just as they have headed to Crusaders in the past on the Friday night game.

But we are still only seeing 2 or 3k going to those games. There is a limit to the attraction of the championships within the current supporter base. 

These aren't new RL fans that would be targeted by this. It would existing RL fans attending in addition (If not instead of).

The championship needs to find it's niche and I honestly don't think it can find that whilst it defines itself in relation SL. Either as a competitor or an addition to. 

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The thing is the RL mentality of if it's not popular this year, we should scrap it, is what's wrong with our game. Next year there is potentially the Bulls, York (who's crowds have grown nicely due to the great effort there), Newcastle (as York) and Workington (who are investing heavily with players let's hope it pays off and they invest in more marketing).

Clubs on the up.

Leigh have dropped down this year and will take a fair few. You have Fax and Fev too.

In addition how can it be judged when BOTH Toronto and Toulouse will be there (I assume)

Finally why do I keep using brackets? (I don't know)


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The Falcons game in Newcastle was an interesting one. There were posters up on the Metro in the student areas advertising it as Newcastle v Northumbria Varsity game. The Falcons game was in small print.

Didn't see any Magic posters but did hear a radio ad on a local station.

Edited by Shaggy

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16 minutes ago, Shaggy said:

The Falcons game in Newcastle was an interesting one. There were posters up on the Metro in the student areas advertising it as Newcastle v Northumbria Varsity game. The Falcons game was in small print.

Didn't see any Magic posters but did hear a radio ad on a local station.

I guess they might have been student posters.

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On 29/03/2018 at 11:52 AM, Gerrumonside ref said:

I think Magic should be for attracting new fans and laying the groundwork for expansion.

With all due respect, I can’t see much point in holding it in Leeds.

I went to the first Magic at Cardiff where I thought we were helping to launch the Celtic Crusaders, but was disappointed that relatively few of the people around us at Cardiff were Welsh.

I’ve not been to the ones in Newcastle and would be interested to know if they’re seen to be helping to turn the Geordies onto the game and into Newcastle Thunder fans.

 

It helps thunder when they play the night before and sell thousands of tickets.... same with the skolars before CC.

More should be done with local development though!

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Reports the NRL will be having a magic weekend/summer bash in Brisbane.

Will be interesting to see how it goes, especially as the attendance isn't going to set any records, it shows the value is something other than simple attendances one being it's a fantastic tv product.

Probably never going to happen but as a made for tv product a joint magic weekend with a couple SL games at the NRL weekend and a couple of NRL games at the SL weekend, all games televised in succession would IMO be hugely popular, a fantastic tv product and raise the profile of each competition in the opposite market massively.

I think a mixed NRL/SL magic weekend in mid summer could do Wembley 

Edited by scotchy1

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12 minutes ago, scotchy1 said:

Reports the NRL will be having a magic weekend/summer bash in Brisbane.

Will be interesting to see how it goes, especially as the attendance isn't going to set any records, it shows the value is something other than simple attendances one being it's a fantastic tv product.

Probably never going to happen but as a made for tv product a joint magic weekend with a couple SL games at the NRL weekend and a couple of NRL games at the SL weekend, all games televised in succession would IMO be hugely popular, a fantastic tv product and raise the profile of each competition in the opposite market massively.

I think a mixed NRL/SL magic weekend in mid summer could do Wembley 

Interesting that they could've held this anywhere (thinking Perth, Adelaide, Darwin) but decided instead to stick it right in a 'Heartland' area...........

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Just now, hunsletgreenandgold said:

Interesting that they could've held this anywhere (thinking Perth, Adelaide, Darwin) but decided instead to stick it right in a 'Heartland' area...........

First time for them so it makes some sense imo. Especially with how the Aussies generally have municiple stadiums who bid for events. If it's a success you'd expect somewhere like Perth or maybe Auckland. Don't think Darwin or Adelaide have a suitable stadium. 

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I imagine their long term ambition would be to take it elsewhere but as scotchy says, they might be looking at the safe option for the first one. The distances involved in travelling in Australia will make it much harder for fans to travel than ours popping up to Newcastle.

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On ‎4‎/‎11‎/‎2018 at 12:54 PM, Dave T said:

Bit of a mixed message there. These cheap places are bucking the trend in many places and doing very well for themselves.

I'm not sure why the suggestion is bizarre - ever tried going to a festival, they have loads of different events all over the place to cater for a wider range of people.

The problem with the festival analogy is that it is only the main stage which gets on TV.

The major point about the Bash is that it is the only event for Championship clubs gets Sky coverage, mix it in with an SL competition and that almost certainly is going to be lost.


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