David Barrett has worked as the International Ticket Secretary at London Welsh since 1989 and is now standing down.
Here he gives a brief insight into his time managing that role.
Many things have occurred at London Welsh during the period I have been supporting the club. Time has flown by and to put exact dates on actual seasons is a challenge.
For certain I first watched London Welsh during one of its very successful seasons. Recommended by a work colleague, I made the short journey to ODP during the 1984/1985 Season. The season ended seeing the boys in red playing Bath in the John Player Cup Final at Twickenham.
About a year later, standing on the platform at WakefieldRailway Station having watched London Welsh play Wakefield, I met Geoff Williams who was then the Membership Secretary
and soon after the meeting I became Assistant Membership Secretary and in the 1988/1989 season I was asked to become International Ticket Secretary .....a job that has had its fair
share of challenges and enjoyment.
The application process and ballot system allocating tickets to Members has changed very little over the years, even if the cost of watching an International Rugby Match has!
One thing for certain that I learnt over the years is that Members of London Welsh get a very high priority when it comes to being allocated tickets for matches at Twickenham
and Cardiff, compared with other clubs, as membership of the Welsh Rugby Union as well as the Rugby Football Union gives London Welsh an entitlement to tickets for games at both
Cardiff and Twickenham.....a BIG Bonus.
Here is a rough guide to the price of watching a Six Nations game since I took over the duties in 1989:
2019 Lowest price now £40 – Top Price £110 PLUS
I have experienced very few problems or challenges over the 30 years as Ticket Secretary and only twice have tickets fallen into the “wrong hands” and following discussion it has resulted in just a knuckle rap from the respective Union when a reduction in allocation or a fine could have been the end result.
Perhaps the most time consuming task as Ticket Secretary has been recording the ticket details of every ticket allocated and details of the person allocated the tickets.
The most common question I have needed to answer is “Why have I not got tickets” and I have more than once had to tell a Club Chairman “sorry you are too late asking for tickets they
have all been allocated”
As well as being International Ticket Secretary, I also worked with head coach Lyn Jones on the roller coaster road to promotion to the Aviva Premiership as team secretary!
Gwyn Williams London Welsh Rugby Chairman commented: “Rugby Clubs are very dependant on their member volunteers. I consider David to be one of the finest I have had the pleasure to work with. In the course of the last few years we have experienced genuine challenges in administering international tickets. David has picked his way through the difficulties and done so with good humour and forbearance. We look forward to David and Pam continuing to enjoy our rugby club and I hope we can do him the justice of continuing to provide such exemplary management of our ticket allocations and debentures. Thank you David, you are a gent and a star”.
We thank David for 30 years of impeccable service to the club and it’s members and wish him all the best and look forward to seeing him in the grandstand next season.
David Barrett being presented with a bottle of champagne by Club Chairman Gwyn Williams.