Northampton Town have been awarded Family Excellence status for the eighth season in succession, in recognition of the club's continued commitment to attracting families and young fans, and the engaging level of matchday experience the club provides.
The EFL Family Excellence Scheme sees each club assessed across a range of touchpoints, in order to reflect and report on the first-time family experience they encounter. The programme empowers clubs to think differently about their interactions with family supporters, encourages them to innovate and consider the specific wants and needs of the family unit and the matchday experience they offer, in order to attract, welcome and retain a new generation of supporters.
The award, which is decided upon after two mystery visits from across the season, saw the Cobblers score highly in all categories.
One area of particular praise from the report from the mystery visitor said of the club's pre-match flag waving activities with local youngsters: "This was probably the best and most inclusive execution of this activity that I’ve seen at any EFL stadium. There is consequently a plethora of evidence of the club giving family engagement a very high degree of focus.There are naturally no major weaknesses."
"We are exceptionally proud of our matchday experience and in particular the work we do to attract families and young supporters to Sixfields," said Chairman Kelvin Thomas.
"We know attendances are on the rise at Sixfields. Despite a high number of midweek home games and some small away attendances, we have just recorded our highest average attendance in League 2 for 16 years, bigger even than the 2015/16 average attendance and that shows the progress we are making.
"I would like to say a big thank you to the staff and the army of volunteers who help make the Sixfields matchday experience what it is. A lot of work goes in to this and this award is a testament to that work.
"Thank you too to IN'n'OUT AutoCentres who sponsor our family area and to all those families and children who come to Sixfields to support the Cobblers. That bodes very well for the future of our club and we are delighted to have been handed this award yet again."