More than 2,000 members of the Next Generation of Rovers supporters arrived en masse to experience the thrill of a live football experience at Ewood Park on Saturday.
Whilst their noticeable vocal addition to the atmosphere unfortunately couldn't contribute to a home win, the buzz within the Blackburn End upper tier, where the majority of the concept's attendees were based, was a welcome boost to the matchday experience for all home supporters on the day.
There was a significant increase in the number of supporters enjoying the stadium's family-friendly facilities before the game against Stoke City, in particular the Foster's FanZone, Strikers Family Lounge and our inflatable penalty shoot-out challenge.
It also led to some significant footfall in the Roverstore, as families rushed to snap up replica shirts, which had been reduced in price at the perfect time to prove as an enticing purchase for those who may not have had the chance to visit Ewood as regularly in recent times, or in some cases, for the very first time.
The tickets were distributed by Blackburn Rovers Community Trust in support of the club's initiative, meaning that attendees across many of the charity's 50-plus projects were given the chance to attend a first team fixture as our guests.
ìThere was a lot of energy and excitement within the Next Generation section throughout the whole game, explained Community Trust chief executive Gary Robinson, who joined the thousands of guests within that area of the stadium.
ìWe were proud to be able to give so many families the chance to enjoy watching their local team and it provided a definite boost to the feel around the stadium on the day and of course the attendance itself, which was well above our seasonal average.
ìIt has been a very positive exercise and we hope that we will be able to produce similar outcomes again in the future to help as many local people as possible feel connected to the club.