Football Fans Census

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Football Fans Census
Private Limited Company
Industry Market Research
Founded 2002
HeadquartersLondon, England
Parent Football Fans Central Ltd

Football Fans Census (sometimes known as FFC), is the trading name of Football Fans Central Ltd, a small [1] market research company which specialises in research into the views and opinions of English football supporters.

When the free-to-air digital sports channel ITV Digital collapsed in 2002; it reportedly owed £178.5m to Football League clubs. Two football fans began a campaign for ITV Digital's parent entities, the regional ITV companies Granada Television and Carlton Television to repay this money to the clubs. [2] [3]

ITV Digital

ITV Digital was a British digital terrestrial television broadcaster which launched a pay-TV service on the world's first digital terrestrial television network. Its main shareholders were Carlton Communications and Granada plc, two franchises of the ITV network. Starting as ONdigital in 1998, the service was re-branded as ITV Digital in July 2001. Low audience figures, piracy issues and an ultimately unaffordable multimillion-pound deal with the Football League led to the broadcaster suffering massive losses, forcing it to enter administration in March 2002. Pay television services ceased permanently on 1 May 2002, and the remaining free-to-air channels such as BBC One and Channel 4 had ceased when the company was liquidated in October, with the terrestrial multiplexes subsequently taken over by Crown Castle and the BBC to create Freeview later that month.

ITV (TV network) TV network in the United Kingdom

ITV is a British free-to-air television network with its headquarters in London, it was launched in 1955 as Independent Television under the auspices of the Independent Television Authority to provide competition to BBC Television, that was established in 1932. ITV is also the oldest commercial network in the UK. Since the passing of the Broadcasting Act 1990, its legal name has been Channel 3, to distinguish it from the other analogue channels at the time, namely BBC 1, BBC 2 and Channel 4. In part, the number 3 was assigned because television sets would usually be tuned so that the regional ITV station would be on the third button, with the other stations being allocated to the number within their name.

Carlton Television ITV franchise holder

Carlton Television was the ITV franchise holder for London and the surrounding counties from 9.25am every Monday to 5.15pm every Friday. The company is now managed with London Weekend Television as a single entity, but the two companies are still separately licensed. The station is owned and operated by ITV plc under the licensee of ITV Broadcasting Limited. Carlton has been branded on air as 'ITV1' since 28 October 2002, and as 'ITV' since 14 January 2013. Carlton legally exists as Carlton Television Ltd. This company is, along with most other regional companies owned by ITV plc, listed on as a "Dormant company". As Carlton's name has no relation to its region, its on-screen identity has been completely removed. Other regions have kept their original company name as a region name and in their local news name.

The campaign, under the name Football Fans Union, took the form of a protest against the companies resulting in the 'Can the Commercials' petition and direct action. [4] The group asked football fans to boycott ITV's World Cup 2002 coverage, and in particular to switch channels during advertisements; so that advertisers would bring pressure on ITV and impact on the companies' advertising revenues. [5]

The fans' campaign ran alongside legal action by the Football League; but it proved to be unsuccessful when the Court of Appeal threw out the Football League's action in 2006. [6]

The impetus created by this campaign led to the Football Fans Union developing into the Football Fans Census; and a desire to be a voice for football supporters through online surveys and opinion polls.

Past surveys include:

Related Research Articles

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Media of the United Kingdom

There are several different types of media in the United Kingdom: television, radio, newspapers, magazines and websites. The country also has a strong music industry. The United Kingdom has a diverse range of providers, the most prominent being the publicly-owned public service broadcaster, the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC). The BBC's largest competitors are ITV plc, which operates 13 of the 15 regional television broadcasters that make up the ITV Network, and American global media conglomerate Comcast, which owns the broadcaster Sky Ltd. Regional media is covered by local radio, television and print newspapers. Trinity Mirror operates 240 local and regional newspapers, as well as national newspapers such as the Daily Mirror and the Sunday Mirror.


ITV4 is a British free-to-air television station which was launched on 1 November 2005. It is owned by ITV Digital Channels Ltd, a division of ITV plc, and is part of the ITV network. The channel has a male-orientated line-up, including sport, police shows and US comedies and dramas, as well as classic ITV action series of the 1960s and 1970s. ITV4 is broadcast on digital terrestrial, satellite, cable and IPTV platforms.

Jim Rosenthal British sports commentator

Jim Rosenthal is an English sports presenter and commentator. In a long broadcasting career, Rosenthal has presented coverage of many sports including football, rugby, boxing and athletics. He has covered eight FIFA World Cups, three Rugby World Cups, two Olympic Games and 150 Formula One races.

Peter Brackley was an English football commentator, perhaps most famous for commentating for Football Italia on Channel 4 in the 1990s and formerly commentating for the computer game series Pro Evolution Soccer, up until Pro Evolution Soccer 6, and for Michael Owen's World League Soccer '99.

Television in Scotland mostly consists of UK-wide broadcasts, with variations at different times which are specific to Scotland. Scotland has no major television channel of its own and most people receive channels that are broadcast to the United Kingdom as a whole, including five terrestrial channels and various digital channels.

The history of ITV, the United Kingdom "Independent Television" commercial network, goes back to 1954. As of 29 February 2016, there are fifteen regional licences for the ITV Network, shared between two owners: ITV plc, and the STV Group.

ITV Sport is a sport producer for ITV. It was formed following the merger between Granada Sport and Central Sport.


ITV HD is a British free-to-air high-definition television channel operated by ITV plc, the company which is contracted to provide 11 ITV services across the UK. ITV HD is available to view in England, Wales and the Scottish Borders on Freesat via channel 111, Freeview channel 103, Sky channel 176, Virgin Media channel 113 and in Switzerland on SwisscomTV.

Broadhall Way football stadium

Broadhall Way, known as the Lamex Stadium for sponsorship purposes, is an association football stadium in Stevenage, Hertfordshire. It has been the home ground of Stevenage since the early 1960s, and has a capacity of 6,722 people, including 3,142 seats.

The Premiership was a television programme which showed highlights of the FA Premier League.

ESPN Classic (European TV channel)

ESPN Classic was a British-based European sports television channel which first launched in France in March 2002, followed by Italy in July 2002, and pan-Europe in December 2003. On 13 March 2006 ESPN Classic launched on Sky channel 442 in the UK and Ireland, the first channel in the UK under the ESPN branding. On 3 August 2009, ESPN Classic launched on Virgin Media channel 533 as a part of the XL pack, and in early 2011 video on demand content started to appear on the Virgin Media platform. On 14 August 2009, ESPN Classic launched on UPC Ireland channel 409 as a part of the Max package. It broadcast a range of archive sports coverage, with a large emphasis on football.

ITV Sport Channel

ITV Sport Channel was a short-lived digital sport television channel, that was owned by Carlton Communications and Granada plc. It was launched on 11 August 2001 and closed on 12 May 2002, precipitating ITV Digital's collapse over a month later. ITV Sport Channel had two sister channels, ITV Sport Plus and ITV Sport Select.

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A terrace or terracing in sporting terms refers to the traditional standing area of a sports stadium, particularly in the United Kingdom and Republic of Ireland. A terrace is a series of concrete steps which are erected for spectators to stand on.

Safe standing

Safe standing is a term used to describe various design options in stadia to allow spectators to stand at events. It is primarily used in the context of association football in the United Kingdom, where a series of fatal incidents led to legislation requiring major clubs to develop all-seater stadiums during the 1990s. Since then, fan groups have campaigned against the ban on standing accommodation, arguing that new design options would allow designated standing areas to be built in compliance with all safety laws and guidelines. As these options are outlawed in England and Wales, safe standing in practice originated in continental Europe, primarily Germany. This occurred because although UEFA and FIFA required all-seater stadiums for international competition, it was not mandatory for domestic matches.

Broadcasting and the foundation of the Premier League

The Premier League was formed with the intention of English football's top clubs capitalising on television rights. Whereas in the Football League money is distributed to the lower leagues, the Premier League intended to sell its own rights, with earnings from broadcasts divided equally between the member clubs only. The decision to break away and start a new league also gave clubs the chance to vote on decisions through a one club-one vote motion.

This is a timeline of the history of ITV.


  1. WebCHeck - Select and Access Company Information
  2. Soccernet Column by Patrick Collins: Bonnie and Clyde face lesson in commercial sense
  3. League concern over potential loss of TV cash - Football News - Telegraph
  4. Football Fans Union
  5. Football Fans Union
  6. BBC NEWS | UK | Football League loses damages bid
  7. BBC Sport | Sport Homepage | Football | Calls grow for return of terraces
  8. Fans pan U's food
  9. Football fans go into extra time
  11. Football Fans Central Limited Research Reports