Pitching In Isthmian South East- Stat Watch- attendances

By Ian Townsend

Last in our series looking at attendances from the first two months of the season, we head South East

When we feature attendances we like to do a little comparing and contrasting, but that's rather difficult when the last two seasons didn't end. But with help from Neil Pilcher at Folkestone, who has done much of the work you'll see here, we're going to share some lists of top attendances so far this season and then look at some averages- although to some extent with the latter, although we're not comparing eggs with oranges, we might be comparing hen eggs with duck eggs! Finally, the South East.

The Pitching In Isthmian South East currently accounts for just over 20% of our total attendances, but some fixtures have rather large numbers. Looking at attendances alone, here's the top ten up to the end of September:

1,214 Hastings United vs Whitehawk
949 Hastings United vs Herne Bay
852 Whitstable Town vs Herne Bay
658 Haywards Heath Town vs Burgess Hill Town
648 Ramsgate vs Hastings United
466 Ramsgate vs Chichester City
351 Burgess Hill Town vs Three Bridges
341 Ramsgate vs Faversham Town
325 Burgess Hill Town vs Hastings United
320 Ashford United vs Herne Bay

As you can see, Hastings United seem to be our main attraction, featuring four times- twice at home and twice away. Herne Bay’s travelling faithful are included three times, whilst Ramsgate feature three times at home. Burgess Hill Town also feature three times, twice at home and once away- the local derby with Haywards Heath Town.

If we take a look at the averages in the division- and remember that we're only two months in before we draw any firm conclusions- they look like this:

Average Attendances in the Pitching In Isthmian South East, Aug/Sept 21-22

Hastings United 1,082
Ramsgate 485
Whitstable Town 458
Haywards Heath Town 356
Burgess Hill Town 327
Ashford United 288
Herne Bay 283
Whitehawk 273
Hythe Town 230
Sittingbourne 220

The top ten turn out to be the entire list of clubs with averages over two hundred- but it’s worth remembering that some of them have played only two matches. It’s also worth pointing out that the average at Pilot Field is more than double that of the next best club- indeed, you could add the average attendances of the bottom eight of our twenty clubs and they would still be eighty four short of the Hastings figure.

Now comes the interesting bit, if you like statistics. Again, this isn't really a scientific comparison, as we're comparing a full season average with three or four home matches, but this is how those stats compare with the last full season we had, 2018-19.

Average Attendances Pitching In Isthmian South East, 2018-19

Hastings United 445
Ramsgate 212
Whitstable Town 209
Haywards Heath Town 129
*Burgess Hill Town 418
Ashford United 317
Herne Bay 265
*Whitehawk 318
Hythe Town 257
Sittingbourne 180

* note- Burgess Hill Town and Whitehawk were in the Pitching In Isthmian Premier Division

If we look at the percentage increase/decrease between 2018/19 and the first two months of 2021/22, this is what we get, with the table changing a little in order:

Increase/decrease in attendances 2018-19 to 2021-22, Pitching In Isthmian South Central

Haywards Heath Town increased by 176%
Hastings United increased by 143%
Ramsgate increased by 129%
Whitstable Town increased by 119%
Sittingbourne increased by 22%
Herne Bay increased by 7%
Ashford United decreased by 9%
Hythe Town decreased by 11%
*Whitehawk decreased by 14%
*Burgess Hill Town decreased by 22%

It would be wrong to draw any firm conclusions from this table- and remember, not only have our clubs played a small number of home matches, but their average will also be skewed by whether the clubs visiting them have been those who traditionally bring large numbers of travelling fans- but it is worth patting rather a few clubs on the back for a moment!

Finally, and we'll include this table as we look at every division, here are the top twenty attended fixtures across the Pitching In Isthmian League for August and September 2021:

2,101 Worthing vs Bognor Regis Town (1)
1,214 Hastings United vs Whitehawk (2)
1,148 Worthing vs Bowers & Pitsea (3)
1,051 Lewes vs Horsham (4)
1,028 Worthing vs Corinthian-Casuals (5)
949 Hastings United vs Herne Bay (6)
852 Whitstable Town vs Herne Bay (7)
839 Folkestone Invicta vs Enfield Town (8)
836 Folkestone Invicta vs Worthing (9)
802 Bognor Regis Town vs Carshalton Athletic (10)
798 Worthing vs East Thurrock United (11)
797 Stowmarket Town vs Bury Town (12)
782 Folkestone Invicta vs Potters Bar Town (13)
772 Folkestone Invicta vs Horsham (14)
745 Bognor Regis Town vs Wingate & Finchley (15)
723 Lewes vs Cheshunt (16)
703 Lewes vs Hornchurch (17)
686 Enfield Town vs Cheshunt (18)
671 Binfield vs Bracknell Town (19)
658 Haywards Heath Town vs Burgess Hill Town (20)

Most of the stats courtesy of Neil Pilcher.

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Where next?

Mackerel Men march on Worthing climb to second place after seven goal thriller
A host of Tanners New management team, and SIX debutants for Leatherhead

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