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Firms are up for the cup
IT may not have been a positive result on the pitch for Swindon Town on Tuesday night but firms in the town had a winning feeling.
A sell-out crowd of almost 15,000 packed the County Ground to watch the Robins take on Chelsea, which they lost 2-0.
This meant many potential customers looking for a drink and something to eat.
Pubs and takeaways packed out with fans both before and after the game, bringing a boost to the local economy.
“We had a really busy night as people came to watch the match,” said Paul Mellor, the manager of Yates’s pub in Bridge Street.
“Whenever Swindon are on television or have a big game we do well. With the games against Bristol City as well on Saturday we have seen sales increase significantly on last year.”
Tuesday would not normally be a night many of the local takeways would expect strong sales but with more than 3,000 Chelsea fans down it turned into a very profitable night.
Jamal Esmat, who works at Newroz on Manchester Road, said: “I was hoping for a busy night and things were good.
“There were lots of people in and everyone was very friendly.
“When Swindon play it is good for trade but even more so when it is a really big game.”
The Swindon Chamber of Commerce said big games are a big boost to the town and other the smaller businesses.
“I was at the game last night and very encouraged to see the increased attendance with a bumper crowd of 15,000, which continues a definite trend,” said Heydar Faramarzi, the President of the Swindon branch. “This is good news for the local economy, particularly businesses providing leisure, catering and hospitality services.”
One person breathing a sigh of relief is Howard Taylor, the landlord of the Steam Railway pub in Old Town.
Prior to the game the former GWR FM and Heart Radio breakfast presenter promised to buy every reader of the Adver a drink if Swindon won.
He said: “I could certainly sleep much easier on Tuesday night. It’s good to know my business is safe for the time being. I breathed a sigh of relief when Torres scored the first goal but it was definitely nerve-wracking later when Swindon’s disallowed goal went in.”
Despite the tension, Howard says the game was good for the town as a whole.
“Swindon played well and did themselves proud so I think everyone had a good time and enjoyed themselves,” he said.
“Hopefully now the extra 3,000 or 4,000 who came to watch Chelsea will come on a more regular basis.”
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