Chairman Stephen Cleeve pictured last year with the National League North winners' trophy. Promotion to the top tier of non-League football has proved devastating for the club's finances due to a ban on supporters caused by the coronavirus pandemic. Picture: Ian Burt

King’s Lynn Town have launched a donation pledge scheme, which they hope will give assistance to their current financial plight due to the coronavirus pandemic situation and the National League’s decision to play on, without crowds.

The Linnets have been able to play only one match in front of a crowd this season and the announcement of the National League’s resolution to continue, despite financial help being offered to clubs only in the form of loans and not grants as had been the case earlier in the season, sees them in a parlous position.

Club chairman Stephen Cleeve said: “Through no fault of its own, the club has found itself in a position that it can no longer afford to participate in the National League without the assistance of monies in a grant form.

“If the club took a loan in the current circumstances it would saddle it with a debt which would be around its neck for many years to come. Add to that the Prime Minister’s announcement that supporters will not be allowed into sports grounds until at least May 17, means we could have possibly only one more game this season with a crowd, on May 29, which even then would be limited.

“The Linnets donation pledge is a way for not only supporters of King’s Lynn Town but supporters of football around the county, the country and even the world to rally and support the club in these very difficult times.”

Priced at £300 each, the pledges  are available to purchase by clicking the link HERE, which is on the club’s website

“As a way of saying thank you for your donation, I will allow entry to the next 10 games played at The Walks,” added Mr Cleeve.

“This may be the Aldershot fixture at the end of the present season or the pre-season games and early league fixtures of season 2021/22.

“It would be fair to say that unless a substantial amount of these pledges are taken up there is no guarantee that we will be able to continue this current season. I have also estimated that it will cost around £100,000 if we do not continue the season.

“I thank you in advance of your donations to our tremendous club.”

Pledges have already been forthcoming with Norwich City associate director Kevin Dack saying: “As a Norwich City supporter and general football fan of 50 years, it is very frustrating to view the challenges faced by King’s Lynn Town and other similar community football clubs in the face of the pandemic.

“In general, I would have hoped that football in a wider sense and/or the Government would have resolved the issues.

“Community football clubs are a vital resource, which we must seek to protect. In that spirit I am happy to make a £300 contribution to King’s Lynn’s fundraising initiative and wish them well in their bid to retain their recently achieved status within the National League.”