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Arsenal (A) Sun 1 Mar 2015, 14:05, Barclays Premier League

by Helen Mayo @Everton

Everton's stewarding team has been named the best in the Premier League - with the top-flight's annual Fan Survey giving the Club a comprehensive thumbs-up.

With 33,640 football fans taking part in the research nationwide – including 1,260 Evertonians – the Premier League Fan Survey helps gain an understanding of attitudes towards the matchday experience, stadium safety, ticketing facilities and customer service.

Notably Evertonians who took part in the survey had been attending matches at Goodison for an average of 20 years, and were likely to have started supporting the Club as a result of the influence of parents, family or friends.

The Premier League has conducted the survey annually for the past 17 seasons, consulting supporters across every club in the top flight.

And of the 20 clubs in the division, Everton received the most positive responses for their 480 stewarding staff from supporters and the nationwide survey also registered high praise for the Blues in a number of other areas.

Highlights of the Premier League Fan Survey include:

• An overwhelming 99 per cent of Evertonians said they felt positive towards the Club, exceeding the average across the top-flight and recording a marked increase on the score of 55 per cent last season.
• An impressive 75 per cent felt ‘very positive’ towards the Club, compared to a 54 per cent average across the Premier League.
• A massive 84 per cent of fans believe that the Club is ‘well-run’.
• Goodison Park was rated as one of the top four most welcoming stadiums in the top-flight.
• The people working in and around the Club were highly rated by match attendees with Everton’s corporate sales team ranked second out of the 20 clubs, Goodison’s catering team ranked third, staff in the Club store ranked fifth and programme sellers ranked sixth.
• The Club’s matchday programme was rated as fourth in the Premier League
• fared positively in the research with 82 per cent of supporters visiting the Club’s official website for the latest news at least two-three times a week - making the third most visited website in the top-flight.

In ticketing, the Club was recognised for offering value for money and an easy-to-buy-from approach.

In recent years, a commitment has been shown to bringing younger supporters through the turnstiles with the introduction of a £95 Season Ticket for Under 11’s , along with continuing to reward the loyalty of existing Season Ticket holders by offering significant discounts to those who renew. The Premier League Fan Survey also found that Everton are:

• Third for ease of accessing ticket information among Season Ticket holders [fourth among non-Season Ticket holders]
• Second in the league for Season Ticket prices
• The Club was also highly-rated for the ease of purchasing match tickets online and access to tickets for Cup matches.

Robert Elstone, Chief Executive of Everton Football Club said: “Our 'nil satis' approach and quest for continued improvement is integrated into every department within the Club and I’m delighted that this is recognised by such a significant section of our fanbase and the wider footballing family.

“It’s fantastic that our stewarding team specifically have been justly recognised for their continued efforts to be the best in the business. Their professionalism and positive attitude is noticed by the thousands of supporters who are welcomed to Goodison Park every matchday and this exemplifies the commitment shown by every member of staff who serves this great Club.”

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