The AFL has today announced an aggregate League membership of more than 650,000 for season 2011 – the highest in AFL history
Tuesday, 19 July, 2011
The AFL has today announced an aggregate League membership of more than 650,000 for season 2011 – the highest in AFL history.
In an AFL media release, the League confirmed it had completed its official membership audit at the end of last week, following the June 30 deadline.
Chief Executive Andrew Demetriou said the 17 AFL clubs, working with their players, coaches and administrative staff, had continued to lead the way in Australian sport with their ability to convert supporters into members with a direct link to their club with a 650,373 Australians committing to be members of a club.
As at the deadline, the tally for the 17 AFL clubs, with the introduction of the Gold Coast Suns for this year, represented a rise of 5.55 per cent on last year’s previous record tally of 614,251 members.
Club membership has now risen every single year since the 2001 season, and the only drop in membership through the last two decades since 1990 was for the single year in 2000, when the season was brought forward by a month to accommodate the 2000 Sydney Olympics.
“On behalf of the AFL, I wish to thank those supporters who continue to make the commitment to join an AFL club. Their passion for our game is the lifeblood of our sport across the country,” Mr Demetriou said.
“I would like to congratulate the players at every one of our teams and all the staff and coaches at each of our clubs who work so hard to make our game a success.
“Membership and match-day attendances at our games are the AFL’s most important indicators of the game’s health. Our attendances are tracking towards the highest total in our history, with the addition of 11 extra games this season, and our supporters have been rewarded with the tremendous quality of play by the teams through the 2011 Toyota AFL Premiership Season.
“The clubs and players deserve great credit for standard of the game on the field and also for the many hours that are invested in connecting with supporters in every part of the community,” he said.
Mr Demetriou said 10 clubs had recorded increases on their 2010 membership tally – Carlton, Collingwood, Essendon, Fremantle, Hawthorn, Melbourne, North Melbourne, Port Adelaide, Richmond and St Kilda.
Collingwood recorded a massive increase of nearly 20 per cent, for the second consecutive year, taking its total membership to 71,271 – a record for any club in the game’s history.
Port Adelaide recorded the second-largest increase of 12 per cent, due to its merger with the Port Adelaide Magpies in the SANFL, while Richmond and Melbourne also recorded double-digit growth.
Mr Demetriou said seven clubs now boasted membership bases beyond 40,000 – the Adelaide Crows, Carlton, Collingwood, Essendon, Hawthorn, Richmond and West Coast.
Mr Demetriou said 77 per cent of all club memberships were for at least 11 games, with more than 18 per cent of memberships now comprised of home and away memberships across Victorian-based clubs that cover between 16 and 18 games.
Collingwood and Hawthorn each boast more than 20,000 members with home and away packages.
Below is the membership breakdown for each club, and the comparison figures for the 2010 year.
2011 AFL Membership (Club Access Members)
WEST COAST 43,216
ST KILDA 39,276
PORT ADELAIDE 32,581
WESTERN BULLDOGS 29,710
GOLD COAST 11,141
2010 AFL Membership (CLUB TOTAL MEMBERS 30/06/10)
NORTH MELBOURNE 26,953
PORT ADELAIDE 29,092
ST KILDA 39,021
WEST COAST 44,160
WESTERN BULLDOGS 32,077