Heroes & Villains, the Aston Villa fanzine

Heroes & Villains => Heroes Discussion => Topic started by: dave.woodhall on August 15, 2022, 11:29:55 PM

Title: Let them eat... anything
Post by: dave.woodhall on August 15, 2022, 11:29:55 PM
A few ideas about the service industry in Aston.

https://heroesandvillains.info/2022/08/15/let-them-eat-anything/
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: LeonW on August 16, 2022, 12:03:23 AM
A few ideas about the service industry in Aston.

https://heroesandvillains.info/2022/08/15/let-them-eat-anything/

Is this a reflection of cost cutting or just bad organisation, Dave? Or both?
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: dave.woodhall on August 16, 2022, 12:05:21 AM
A few ideas about the service industry in Aston.

https://heroesandvillains.info/2022/08/15/let-them-eat-anything/

Is this a reflection of cost cutting or just bad organisation, Dave? Or both?

No idea.
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: Bad English on August 16, 2022, 05:58:22 AM
Great feed Dave.
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: ChicagoLion on August 16, 2022, 06:20:29 AM
I hope this gets to Purslow or better still the owners, because they should be extremely embarrassed.
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: ozzjim on August 16, 2022, 07:04:17 AM
The catering partner at Villa doesn't take much googling. As said before,  this is a simple contract management discussion or re negotiation to sort.
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: algy on August 16, 2022, 07:31:00 AM
Great article.

Fully stocked vending machines with cold food (sandwiches, sausage rolls, crisps, sweets etc) would make a lot of sense if they're struggling to get the quantity or quality of staff in - might ease a little of the pressure.

Charging for tap water, even if there is some kind of legal loophole that allows them to, is utterly awful. It's a legal requirement *for a reason*, not a challenge to circumnavigate with lawyers.
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: Flin5tone on August 16, 2022, 07:38:21 AM
Good article. Hopefully this is read by the club

Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: RamboandBruno on August 16, 2022, 07:39:31 AM
Really good read. The people who matter need to be aware of the total embarrassment going on in the service hatches on the concourses. Saturday may have been worse than usual because of the circumstances you describe Dave, but it is always bad, every game.
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: darren woolley on August 16, 2022, 08:40:05 AM
Great read Dave.
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: Brend'Watkins on August 16, 2022, 09:31:15 AM
The only time I can remember the Holte Concourse being anything like acceptable was during the Lerner years with their healthier offerings. Decent burgers, Pulled Pork baps and proper coffee. It didnít take an age to get served for it either. For those who wanted chips, curry sauce or pies they were available too. The Holte suite opened up at half time for the purpose of selling pies was a welcome feature too. There was even a mobile chap with a tank of Heineken strapped to his back which made getting a relatively decent beer on draught very quick and easy. All that seems to have gone and replaced with a much worse service. In fact, itís difficult to see how it could be any worse.

On Saturday at half time I could look from my seat into the concourse and observed the snaking queues. I stayed in my seat for the remainder of the game thirsty. It really needs sorting.
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: sid1964 on August 16, 2022, 10:05:35 AM
Surely they could get a consultant in from a company that deals with catering at major events to sort out the various issues,

Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: ChicagoLion on August 16, 2022, 10:12:53 AM
Surely they could get a consultant in from a company that deals with catering at major events to sort out the various issues,
There are plenty of event catering companies but Villa have hired a firm that are delivering at the lowest end of the spectrum.
Someone should get fired.
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: cdward on August 16, 2022, 10:24:30 AM
My 18yr old daughter who has been going to VP since she was 5, surprised me recently when she told me "Hi-Ho Aston Villa" was her favourite song at VP! Kids these days.

But yes, the catering service has been awful for years now, so much that when we go to a match we make sure we never need to eat or drink there.
It's too much hassle, past experiences of spending the entire half time and missing the first 10-15 minutes of the second half in a queue, to be served over priced poor quality food/drink by disinterested staff loses it's appeal very quickly.
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: Des Little on August 16, 2022, 11:44:46 AM
Brilliant article, Dave - as others have said, this needs to be seen by those in charge at the club.  It's both embarrassing and unacceptable, words that I thought I'd stopped using in relation to this great club. 
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: Brend'Watkins on August 16, 2022, 12:14:32 PM
It all seemed to fall apart when they went through the cost cutting under Shit shoes Tonyís tenure. The thing is, itís not that difficult an issue to sort. As someone else intimated just get a specialist catering consultant on the case and it would be sorted quickly.
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: LeeB on August 16, 2022, 12:20:52 PM
Given the price hikes too it's unacceptable
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: spartacuss on August 16, 2022, 12:21:48 PM
Embarrassed to hear that Everton fans had to suffer twice over.  A public institution not supplying drinks in the away end in that ferocious heat is bordering on the criminal. I would have thought it was illegal under the Human Right Act? (Use it now before the Tories get rid of it...) I seriously think the club should formally apologise and provide some recompense to those fans. Our ground might be cramped in part because of its historic status compared with the modern, plastic 'super-bowls', but it is not some superannuated cowshed like some grounds we can think of.
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: Risso on August 16, 2022, 12:32:57 PM
Is there no way the pavements from the Witton/Trinity could be temporarily fenced off, with the area around the McGregor statue used as outside catering at half time? They do something similar at Leeds, and it works very well, although they don't have the issue of public roads both sides like we do.
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: Marlon From Bearwood on August 16, 2022, 12:51:40 PM
Talking of lost revenue, the queue just to get into the club shop stretched all the way across the car park, well over a hour before KO. Many people took one look at the queue and decided against it. Clearly not many people were aware of the small Matchday-only club shop near the Holte, judging by the small numbers there.
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: London Villan on August 16, 2022, 01:25:10 PM
Is there no way the pavements from the Witton/Trinity could be temporarily fenced off, with the area around the McGregor statue used as outside catering at half time? They do something similar at Leeds, and it works very well, although they don't have the issue of public roads both sides like we do.

Pre-match it's not far off this now on the Trinity side - the food/drink vans, the stage etc... I'm sure they could open up the space outside the Trinity turnstiles by the Mcgregor statue at half time to give fans a bit more space. Fine in the summer - not so good on cold winter's afternoon though.
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: Des Little on August 16, 2022, 01:51:40 PM
That's a good point.  The Trinity is gated off - why can't they keep the vans and kiosks open for half time if the gates are locked?
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: Chico Hamilton III on August 16, 2022, 01:58:44 PM
They open the gates at the back of the lower north at half time for people who want a smoke. Could easily flog some food and drink outside to relieve the ridiculous queues inside
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: RamboandBruno on August 16, 2022, 02:24:11 PM
Is there no way the pavements from the Witton/Trinity could be temporarily fenced off, with the area around the McGregor statue used as outside catering at half time? They do something similar at Leeds, and it works very well, although they don't have the issue of public roads both sides like we do.

I think these sort of innovations should be looked at definitely. However, there are fundamentals with the existing catering company that need to be either sorted out with that company, or by the club getting themselves out of the contract and into a new one.
The staff are never the same, so guessing the company we use has high turnover, low pay, low job security work, which is poor in the first instance in terms of the club being associated with that, if its true, but it also means that you have different staff (mostly teenagers) being thrown into it every week without seemingly knowing what to expect.
Im in danger of boring myself through repetition, but just research how much of each alcoholic drink is ordered pre game and at half time and pour loads of bloody pints! Same with having enough of each popular food item, have enough of that food a available! There also doesnít seem to be any management or supervision of the catering stsff, in the lower holte at least, so those poor kids are left to flap about.
After my 25 min wait at half time for two soft drinks and a pint, the young girl then had to go off to find a plastic cup and pour my individual pint.
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: London Villan on August 16, 2022, 02:26:01 PM
Pay them a bonus of 20p for every pint pulled.
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: Sexual Ealing on August 16, 2022, 02:27:50 PM
Is there no way the pavements from the Witton/Trinity could be temporarily fenced off, with the area around the McGregor statue used as outside catering at half time? They do something similar at Leeds, and it works very well, although they don't have the issue of public roads both sides like we do.

I think these sort of innovations should be looked at definitely. However, there are fundamentals with the existing catering company that need to be either sorted out with that company, or by the club getting themselves out of the contract and into a new one.
The staff are never the same, so guessing the company we use has high turnover, low pay, low job security work, which is poor in the first instance in terms of the club being associated with that, if its true, but it also means that you have different staff (mostly teenagers) being thrown into it every week without seemingly knowing what to expect.
Im in danger of boring myself through repetition, but just research how much of each alcoholic drink is ordered pre game and at half time and pour loads of bloody pints! Same with having enough of each popular food item, have enough of that food a available! There also doesnít seem to be any management or supervision of the catering stsff, in the lower holte at least, so those poor kids are left to flap about.
After my 25 min wait at half time for two soft drinks and a pint, the young girl then had to go off to find a plastic cup and pour my individual pint.

When I was a student I did one shift in a kiosk at Carrow Road. It was horrific. And the money was terrible. Norwich sacked their manager the same day for what I presume were unrelated reasons.
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: SaddVillan on August 16, 2022, 02:29:57 PM
Customer service and the customer experience are paramount in US sport.

Franchises and venues do their very best to wring every cent possible out of their punters.

I expect that matchday catering/shop sales is one area that NSWE will be looking at as an opportunity lost.

We're handicapped by the layout and spaces in the stands, but I doubt that we're doing the best we can.

Spurs with their 21st century ground are taking c.£1m a game from pies and pints on attendances of c. 63,000 - £15 a punters, then on an equivalent we should be looking for c.£600k.

I reckon we're miles off that given t
he archaic crap facilities, but surely we can do a whole lot better.

Catering was never our strong point. It's getting worse.


Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: Risso on August 16, 2022, 02:52:44 PM
Another one in a long list of reasons for knocking the whole thing down and starting again somewhere else.
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: Brend'Watkins on August 16, 2022, 02:57:39 PM
Another one in a long list of reasons for knocking the whole thing down and starting again somewhere else.

Then you go and say something stupid like knocking the whole thing down and starting somewhere else In my best Ian Paisley voice...Never! Never! Never
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: Risso on August 16, 2022, 03:06:52 PM
Another one in a long list of reasons for knocking the whole thing down and starting again somewhere else.

Then you go and say something stupid like knocking the whole thing down and starting somewhere else In my best Ian Paisley voice...Never! Never! Never

Don't even care. Crap stands, terrible facilities, shit transport and general access, nothing in the local area, no parking. Apart from that though, it's great.
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: trinityoap on August 16, 2022, 03:09:38 PM
We know what happened to Paisley's "Never".(Not that that was a bad thing)
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: Rudy Can't Fail on August 16, 2022, 03:25:17 PM
Surely they could get a consultant in from a company that deals with catering at major events to sort out the various issues,
There are plenty of event catering companies but Villa have hired a firm that are delivering at the lowest end of the spectrum.
Someone should get fired.

Just had a quick look and our catering suppliers are Compass Contract Services (UK) Limited who are major players. One of their subsidiaries is Levy UK who have the catering contract for Villa Park from corporate to 'Retail'.

https://levy.co.uk/where-we-do-it/sport/aston-villa/
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: ozzjim on August 16, 2022, 03:28:20 PM
Definitely not a lowest end of the spectrum firm.

All catering suppliers across many spaces are having huge issues in recruiting,  retention and supply chain, after suffering massive losses during the pandemic.  It is no excuse,  but as ever there is context. They should have been prepared.
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: nick harper on August 16, 2022, 04:32:02 PM
Definitely not a lowest end of the spectrum firm.

All catering suppliers across many spaces are having huge issues in recruiting,  retention and supply chain, after suffering massive losses during the pandemic.  It is no excuse,  but as ever there is context. They should have been prepared.

Doesnít change the fact their processes are fundamentally flawed in terms of their ability to serve people quickly and efficiently, as others have mentioned - Pre-poured pints, bottled beer kiosks etc. Itís almost like they havenít twigged we now get 42,000 every game.
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: Bad English on August 16, 2022, 04:59:19 PM
Another one in a long list of reasons for knocking the whole thing down and starting again somewhere else.
I agree with this.
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: RamboandBruno on August 17, 2022, 07:40:32 AM
Another one in a long list of reasons for knocking the whole thing down and starting again somewhere else.
I agree with this.

Id rather abandon my pre and half time pint, or put up with the shite service that move to a souless bowl from VP. Its our heritage and what we are.

Just pre pour the bloody pints please!
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: ChicagoLion on August 17, 2022, 08:00:51 AM
Definitely not a lowest end of the spectrum firm.


The delivery is without doubt at the lowest end of the Spectrum and Compass have operating businesses that supply every market segment, from high end corporate events  to very basic catering.
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: Clampy on August 17, 2022, 08:21:21 AM
I don't think we should be knocking down Villa Park just because the catering and public transport needs improving.
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: Clampy on August 17, 2022, 08:26:53 AM
Another one in a long list of reasons for knocking the whole thing down and starting again somewhere else.

Then you go and say something stupid like knocking the whole thing down and starting somewhere else In my best Ian Paisley voice...Never! Never! Never

Don't even care. Crap stands, terrible facilities, shit transport and general access, nothing in the local area, no parking. Apart from that though, it's great.

Blimey, has Wilma nicked your phone?
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: brian green on August 17, 2022, 08:47:42 AM
I suppose it is my age but I really see no unbearable hardship or even inconvenience in lasting two hours without feeding or drinking.  Our core values are those of an historic, proud, vibrant football club.  Beating ourselves up because we can't get a balti pie at the correct temperature at half time inside the stadium is demeaning.  In my opinion.
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: ChicagoLion on August 17, 2022, 08:53:32 AM
I am a traditionalist, Villa Park is synonymous with supporting The Villa for me.
I wonít ever go to some identikit stadium at the NEC or some other soulless area just because I can get a cappuccino and a Danish pastry in less than 10 minutes.
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: Marlon From Bearwood on August 17, 2022, 09:08:17 AM
I don't think we should be knocking down Villa Park just because the catering and public transport needs improving.

Well thereís also the bigger issue of 50% of the stands not being fit for purpose, with the other two also requiring work.
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: Risso on August 17, 2022, 09:10:06 AM
I suppose it is my age but I really see no unbearable hardship or even inconvenience in lasting two hours without feeding or drinking.  Our core values are those of an historic, proud, vibrant football club.  Beating ourselves up because we can't get a balti pie at the correct temperature at half time inside the stadium is demeaning.  In my opinion.

Yes, that's the only reason, obviously. FFS.
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: RamboandBruno on August 17, 2022, 09:43:20 AM
I am a traditionalist, Villa Park is synonymous with supporting The Villa for me.
I wonít ever go to some identikit stadium at the NEC or some other soulless area just because I can get a cappuccino and a Danish pastry in less than 10 minutes.

Well said
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: Des Little on August 17, 2022, 09:50:29 AM
If we can't handle a rush on beers and pies at half time, I wouldn't fancy our chances of creating a state of the art stadium.
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: algy on August 17, 2022, 10:15:10 AM
I suppose it is my age but I really see no unbearable hardship or even inconvenience in lasting two hours without feeding or drinking.  Our core values are those of an historic, proud, vibrant football club.  Beating ourselves up because we can't get a balti pie at the correct temperature at half time inside the stadium is demeaning.  In my opinion.
Strongly agree.


I dunno, it feels to me like maybe there are ways that we could deal with the catering issue without knocking down the entire ground.

It feels to me like the facilities in the ground were built for a very different era than the current one.  Flin5tone made an excellent point - in the current stands, concentrate each stall on doing one thing, and doing it well.  Heavily prioritise stuff with a fast turnover, and in those things work out how to have the fastest turnover.  I'd also say that maybe looking at vending machines where they're suitable (e.g. sweets, crisps, hot drinks) might be a good way to relieve some pressure.

If we want street food, fine, but that will have to exist in new stands that are built to accommodate that - not trying to shoehorn it in to a blatantly unsuited environment.

Transport feels like a solvable problem, as does catering.
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: Jon Crofts on August 17, 2022, 10:18:11 AM
Twickenham seem to be able to manage to serve beer and food to 80,000 plus people without much drama and even employ a deposit cup scheme that reduces waste. You can order pints via the stadium app and collect at pick up points and have roving beer sellers all around the stadium. It's really not that hard.
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: Des Little on August 17, 2022, 10:33:41 AM
Twickenham seem to be able to manage to serve beer and food to 80,000 plus people without much drama and even employ a deposit cup scheme that reduces waste. You can order pints via the stadium app and collect at pick up points and have roving beer sellers all around the stadium. It's really not that hard.

Exactly this. Have we got the right people in charge of this aspect of the club?
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: LeeB on August 17, 2022, 10:35:05 AM
Twickenham seem to be able to manage to serve beer and food to 80,000 plus people without much drama and even employ a deposit cup scheme that reduces waste. You can order pints via the stadium app and collect at pick up points and have roving beer sellers all around the stadium. It's really not that hard.

Bloody Leeds had two blokes just out on the concourse, one with a keg pouring and one with a card machine taking payment, that managed to service the whole away end booze quickly with little fuss.
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: eamonn on August 17, 2022, 10:57:09 AM
Re vending machines, they can take-up a fair amount of space. In some of our tight concourses, with human traffic flowing everywhere, it could create further bottlenecks.
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: Risso on August 17, 2022, 11:05:18 AM
Twickenham seem to be able to manage to serve beer and food to 80,000 plus people without much drama and even employ a deposit cup scheme that reduces waste. You can order pints via the stadium app and collect at pick up points and have roving beer sellers all around the stadium. It's really not that hard.

Agreed, and it goes back to what I said before, that a lot of it is outside so it automatically means there's far less strain on the kiosks in the stadium. Rugby does have an inherent advantage in that you can drink in your seat though. Part of the problem at old grounds like Villa is that people are queuing and then standing around drinking in the same spots, and those same spots are cramped concourses. If you can utilise outside areas you've a) got more room for extra food and drink providers and b) you're massively diluting the crowds. At Villa, it's the perfect storm of not enough space, not enough providers, and the ones there are being terrible and badly run.
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: oldhill_avfc on August 17, 2022, 11:20:16 AM
I don't know why accessing catering during half time is limited to the concourses.   There's plenty of space around the ground that could be cordoned off and be used to eat and drink in.  If it was sectioned off then that would alleviate any need to go through turnstiles and the queues that may ensue.   Essentially - extend the fan zone concept for half time use.  It's also a bit like Edgbaston where the food outlets are within the perimeter of the ground.
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: dave.woodhall on August 17, 2022, 11:35:58 AM
If you can go out at half-time for a fag, surely you can go out for a beer.
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: kipeye on August 17, 2022, 11:45:14 AM
 Very good points, Dave. I wonder if self-service machines might help. If paper cups were available. bottled drinks and similar could be sold automatically for fans to self-pour and bin the bottle. Noodle cups etc (yes I know,) could also be sold this way.
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: AV82EC on August 17, 2022, 11:58:12 AM
In typical Brum fashion youíve got an easily fenceable delineated outside space behind the Holte End which could accommodate pre, during and post match bars and food outlets with some big tent like structures to keep out the worst of the weather and weíre using it as a car park. Of course Villa put the outside stuff in the most congested part of the ground the bit at the end of the Trinity Road stand where youíve got a walkway which turns into a clogged up nightmare pre match.

I realise some of these issues may not be top priority but at the moment the club is giving off an air of couldnít organise a piss up in a Brewery or even worse we donít care when it comes to match day experience.

Iíve worked in Facilities Management for over 30 years and running buildings is my job, Iíd be quite frankly embarrassed if this was the user experience my building occupants and users were reporting back to me. The Catering company would also be in special measures, shockingly poor.
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: LeeB on August 17, 2022, 01:04:47 PM
It's my bugbear, but it would help a lot if they lost just a few rows of precious car parking from the back of the North Stand it would help actually trying to navigate around the stadium, and they could shift the street food outlets there to stop them bottlenecking near the players entrance.
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: Jon Crofts on August 17, 2022, 02:57:17 PM
If you can go out at half-time for a fag, surely you can go out for a beer.

Haven't seen any evidence that smokers go further than the bogs to be honest.
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: andrew08 on August 17, 2022, 03:40:34 PM
The annoying thing is itís easier to get a beer at pretty much all of our away games. I would say I spend more inside grounds on my travels than I do at Villa Park. Not all of them are the new bowls either. Even places like Burnley or Bournemouth do it more efficiently.

There is nothing like seeing the shutters come up at an away game to the sight of hundreds of pre poured pints!

Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: Jon Crofts on August 17, 2022, 03:57:29 PM
Definitely not a lowest end of the spectrum firm.

All catering suppliers across many spaces are having huge issues in recruiting,  retention and supply chain, after suffering massive losses during the pandemic.  It is no excuse,  but as ever there is context. They should have been prepared.

Compass.

Free school meals during the pandemic, Marcus Rashford? Ring any bells?
Working conditions.
Cleaners salaries.
Living Wage.

They're shithouses of the highest order.
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: adrenachrome on August 17, 2022, 05:45:41 PM
Definitely not a lowest end of the spectrum firm.

All catering suppliers across many spaces are having huge issues in recruiting,  retention and supply chain, after suffering massive losses during the pandemic.  It is no excuse,  but as ever there is context. They should have been prepared.

Compass.

Free school meals during the pandemic, Marcus Rashford? Ring any bells?
Working conditions.
Cleaners salaries.
Living Wage.

They're shithouses of the highest order.

You ain't kidding, Jon.

Broken Compass: the scandals of Compass Group

https://corporatewatch.org/broken-compass-the-scandals-of-compass-group/ (https://corporatewatch.org/broken-compass-the-scandals-of-compass-group/)
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: Gareth on August 17, 2022, 05:49:39 PM
Another one in a long list of reasons for knocking the whole thing down and starting again somewhere else.

I kind of agree - since the Trinity & Holte rebuilds theres very little of any sentimental value left other than site itself
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: The Edge on August 17, 2022, 06:48:59 PM
The idea of kiosks serving in the car park at half time would be a non starter imo. There's a few reasons why not starting with the fact that going up the one million stairs to your seat in the Trinity upper once is tough enough. You'd need to be an Olympic athlete to do it twice.
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: N'ZMAV on August 17, 2022, 07:06:18 PM
I'm surprised the owners and Purslow got this wrong, they usually like to keep the customers, sorry, fans, happy
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: Rudy Can't Fail on August 18, 2022, 12:24:07 PM
Definitely not a lowest end of the spectrum firm.

All catering suppliers across many spaces are having huge issues in recruiting,  retention and supply chain, after suffering massive losses during the pandemic.  It is no excuse,  but as ever there is context. They should have been prepared.

Compass.

Free school meals during the pandemic, Marcus Rashford? Ring any bells?
Working conditions.
Cleaners salaries.
Living Wage.

They're shithouses of the highest order.

That all may be true but the club work with the subsidiary, Birmingham based Levy UK, as do Chelsea, Spurs, Leicester and numerous PL clubs, not to mention..wait for it..Twickenham where they manage 78 bars, 33 food kiosks plus corporate. Edgbaston also use them for matchday food and drink.

My guess is they know what they're doing but whoever is responsible for the Villa Park account couldn't organise a piss up..

https://levy.co.uk/
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: ChicagoLion on August 18, 2022, 02:03:37 PM
They even have a picture of multiple pints having been poured.

Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: artvandelay on August 18, 2022, 02:10:00 PM
Thinking back to Everton away this year (seems a fair comparison, same teams, early kick off). The away end was ridiculously overcrowded on the concourse, however, in the Lower Tier at least, they managed to service all thirsty punters by half way into halftime. We even went back for a second. I believe it was just bottles of either Carling or Carlsberg, which is nobody's favourite, but when you're drinking a pint in the surroundings of breezeblocks and exposed poles from a plastic cup, you're not exactly going to be writing up tasting notes
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: RamboandBruno on August 18, 2022, 02:29:19 PM
Thinking back to Everton away this year (seems a fair comparison, same teams, early kick off). The away end was ridiculously overcrowded on the concourse, however, in the Lower Tier at least, they managed to service all thirsty punters by half way into halftime. We even went back for a second. I believe it was just bottles of either Carling or Carlsberg, which is nobody's favourite, but when you're drinking a pint in the surroundings of breezeblocks and exposed poles from a plastic cup, you're not exactly going to be writing up tasting notes

I was there and this is true
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: MillerBall on August 18, 2022, 10:44:59 PM
A splendid article Dave. Well said.
Regular away fans talk to their counterparts and no doubt the Evertonians will pass their knowledge of last weeks events accordingly.to supporters of other teams.
The notion of increasing the ground capacity is undermined if oor Villa Park infrastructure can't cope with our existing demands.
And as for the local public transport on a match day ...... there is indeed much to be done.
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: Rudy Can't Fail on August 19, 2022, 12:19:54 AM
A splendid article Dave. Well said.
And as for the local public transport on a match day ...... there is indeed much to be done.

Agreed on both points. As for local transport, if the Villa can't make it a local issue nobody can. As others have said, we make it work for Rugby WC, Thats That or whatever they're called, the numbers are the same. Either admit that Villa Park and the city isn't a viable venue or sort the shit out.
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: andyh on August 19, 2022, 06:30:25 AM
How many people could a vending machine service in the half time break?
20 ? 30?
Even if you multiplied that by x number of machines it would be just a painful as it is now.

If people canít get themselves into the ground, I dread to think how theyíd manage confronted with a vending machine that has multiple options in it.

If the catering service is crap, donít use itÖ..maybe the message will get through the next time the club issue a consultation paper.
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: RamboandBruno on August 19, 2022, 09:06:55 AM
How many people could a vending machine service in the half time break?
20 ? 30?
Even if you multiplied that by x number of machines it would be just a painful as it is now.

If people canít get themselves into the ground, I dread to think how theyíd manage confronted with a vending machine that has multiple options in it.

If the catering service is crap, donít use itÖ..maybe the message will get through the next time the club issue a consultation paper.

Nice idea but easier said than done. I go with my now teenage kids and, much to my annoyance, they donít always want to sit in the pub or one of the clubs like the Sacred Heart beforehand. At the same time its nice to get in and around the ground a while before kick off, so they get the feel of the build up. And to be honest getting them some chips or whatever has always been part of the treat of going the Villa. A mass boycott is a nice idea, but really a few simple innovations and more supervision of the staff would go a long way.
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: DeKuip on August 19, 2022, 09:45:48 AM
I remember as a kid in the late 60s/early 70s when the choice at the tea hut when you walked in the Witton End was was tea, bovril, plain crisps with a bag of salt in and wagon wheels. You could nick a sugar lump quite easily though.

Iíd get mocked as being spoilt on the very rare occasion my dad bought me a wagon wheel - standing there eating it in a cloud of cigarette smoke as the men passed around a flask of whisky.
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: Flamingo Lane on August 19, 2022, 10:50:52 AM
I remember as a kid in the late 60s/early 70s when the choice at the tea hut when you walked in the Witton End was was tea, bovril, plain crisps with a bag of salt in and wagon wheels.

More often than not I would have a pie. Fleur de Lys I think they were. Cost about 20p.
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: AlexAlexCropley on August 19, 2022, 11:22:00 AM
I remember as a kid in the late 60s/early 70s when the choice at the tea hut when you walked in the Witton End was was tea, bovril, plain crisps with a bag of salt in and wagon wheels.

More often than not I would have a pie. Fleur de Lys I think they were. Cost about 20p.
Omg! Just had a time slip to standing on the Witton with my dad,under the Trinity roof bit,and he always went to the tea bar and I can still see the Fleur de Lys logo.
The crinkle of the plastic wrapping being opened. Sigh.
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: Lastfootstamper on August 19, 2022, 11:31:58 AM
I remember being at an away game, eighties, somewhere in Yorkshire I think, asking the bloke behind the counter what pies they'd got.
"Meat"
"What kind of meat?"
"Meat"
Title: Re: Let them eat... anything
Post by: Border villan on August 19, 2022, 03:34:01 PM
I remember being at an away game, eighties, somewhere in Yorkshire I think, asking the bloke behind the counter what pies they'd got.
"Meat"
"What kind of meat?"
"Meat"

Halifax?
I recall having a similar conversation just before I bit into a grey sludge wrapped in thick pastry.
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