On behalf of Burnden Aces, Lion of Vienna Suite, Trotters Blog, The Burnden Way and other Bolton Wanderers outlets - we owe you a massive thank you!
Just two short weeks ago, our respective blogs came together to formally invite you, our fellow supporters, to join us in a pre-match protest against our club’s owner and chairman Ken Anderson.
Initial feedback was mixed, leading to tweaks to a proposed itinerary, before an agreed plan of action came into force.
We asked you to follow us in voicing your discontent by agreeing to meet at the Nat Lofthouse memorial statue from 7pm, before embarking upon a lap of the University of Bolton Stadium where other like-minded fans could freely join the march.
Previously planned protests have failed to capture the imagination of the wider community, so we were pleasantly surprised to see you turn out in your numbers - with some media providers suggesting a crowd in the region of 3,000 to 4,000 people had gathered, although a more respectable figure of 2,000 is perhaps a more accurate reflection.
This was, in part, due to the coverage received in both the local and national newspapers, as well as radio, television and a high number of respected journalists on social media keeping a close eye on events.
Backed with the presence of the legendary John McGinlay, you made your voices heard and brought publicity to a club which has suffered greatly in recent years.
We KNOW Monday’s protest isn’t going to force a change in ownership.
We KNOW Monday’s protest was never going to be accepted by all.
But we also KNOW our club cannot and will not be allowed to simply slip away.
We acknowledge there were unsavoury moments from a minority which will grab headlines. Fans standing on Nat’s statue was disrespectful, certain chants towards Ken Anderson and his son we obviously do not condone, and the incident with the steward who was injured during the game was unfortunate.
We hope the female steward involved is recovering and wasn’t seriously harmed.
But the actions of individuals are not reflective of a pre-planned protest which otherwise brought a great deal of exposure to our famous club. People are now talking about Bolton Wanderers again.
The first part of the job is complete and for that, we say ‘Thank You’.
In closing, we promise you one thing - this is only the beginning!