Roll up, roll up for your free season ticket at Leyton Orient

League One club make move in response to West Ham's successful bid to become tenants of the Olympic stadium

Leyton Orient today announced a season ticket giveaway as their latest attempt to ensure their future as West Ham prepare to move to the Olympic stadium.

The club intend to make 1,500 season tickets available to teenagers and students.

Last month West Ham were awarded a 99-year lease as sole tenants of the Stratford venue, despite Orient’s fears the move could wreck their club as they would lose fans to the Hammers.

Orient wanted to ground share and during the long-running battle, they have considered leaving their Brisbane Road ground, which is less than a mile from the Olympic Stadium. Harlow, Romford and Barking have all been suggested as new homes for the League One club, report The Evening Standard.

However, Orient have now declared that if they lose a judicial review into the stadium decision — ending any hopes of a ground share — they will stay at Brisbane Road but would use their ground-breaking scheme to try and strengthen their fan base in the wake of the Hammers’ threat.

Orient chairman and owner Barry Hearn said: “I’m proud to announce this initiative that I hope will be the dawning of a new era for this club. Leyton Orient have been and always will be a real community club who continue to fight our corner despite being the underdog when you look at our neighbours and the threats we face. We will continue to fight the decision to deny us the opportunity to move to the Olympic Stadium but we will fight it in our own backyard and will not be squeezed out.

“A free season ticket provides someone the chance to not only come down and stand up for their local club but also to most importantly watch some exciting football and develop a lifelong affiliation with the club.

“We have had a good season this year and the foundations are in place to build on that for next season and really give it a good go.

“Nothing beats the magic of live football with your mates when you are a teenager and I want as many people as possible to have that opportunity.”

Under the scheme, which is being sponsored by Hearn’s Matchroom Sport company, the 1,500 season tickets will be available to young people aged between 14 and 18 and full-time students aged between 18 and 21 with a valid NUS card on August 3.

Those eligible will be able to apply from tomorrow through the website standupfortheorient.com. The tickets will be situated in the East Stand at Brisbane Road.

The Football Supporters’ Federation today praised Orient for the scheme. A spokesman said: “Young fans are the lifeblood of the game and there are worries they they’re being priced out of football.

“Anything that can make the game more affordable for this age group has to be commended. Clubs who invest in their future will be rewarded with a loyal fanbase that stretches into future generations.”

West Ham will move into their new home for the start of the 2016-17 season once the capacity of the ground has been reduced from 80,000 to 60,000. The cost of adapting the stadium from an athletics to a football venue is between £150milliion and £190m.

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Fishing for votes with Nigel Farage: The Ukip leader shows how he can work an audience as he casts his line to the disaffected of Grimsby

Fishing is on Nigel Farage's mind

Ukip leader casts a line to the disaffected
Who is bombing whom in the Middle East? It's amazing they don't all hit each other

Who is bombing whom in the Middle East?

Robert Fisk untangles the countries and factions
China's influence on fashion: At the top of the game both creatively and commercially

China's influence on fashion

At the top of the game both creatively and commercially
Lord O’Donnell: Former cabinet secretary on the election and life away from the levers of power

The man known as GOD has a reputation for getting the job done

Lord O'Donnell's three principles of rule
Rainbow shades: It's all bright on the night

Rainbow shades

It's all bright on the night
'It was first time I had ever tasted chocolate. I kept a piece, and when Amsterdam was liberated, I gave it to the first Allied soldier I saw'

Bread from heaven

Dutch survivors thank RAF for World War II drop that saved millions
Britain will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power - Labour

How 'the Axe' helped Labour

UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power
Rare and exclusive video shows the horrific price paid by activists for challenging the rule of jihadist extremists in Syria

The price to be paid for challenging the rule of extremists

A revolution now 'consuming its own children'
Welcome to the world of Megagames

Welcome to the world of Megagames

300 players take part in Watch the Skies! board game in London
'Nymphomaniac' actress reveals what it was really like to star in one of the most explicit films ever

Charlotte Gainsbourg on 'Nymphomaniac'

Starring in one of the most explicit films ever
Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers

Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi

The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers
Vince Cable interview: Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'

Vince Cable exclusive interview

Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'
Iwan Rheon interview: Game of Thrones star returns to his Welsh roots to record debut album

Iwan Rheon is returning to his Welsh roots

Rheon is best known for his role as the Bastard of Bolton. It's gruelling playing a sadistic torturer, he tells Craig McLean, but it hasn't stopped him recording an album of Welsh psychedelia
Morne Hardenberg interview: Cameraman for BBC's upcoming show Shark on filming the ocean's most dangerous predator

It's time for my close-up

Meet the man who films great whites for a living
Increasing numbers of homeless people in America keep their mobile phones on the streets

Homeless people keep mobile phones

A homeless person with a smartphone is a common sight in the US. And that's creating a network where the 'hobo' community can share information - and fight stigma - like never before