Sheffield Wednesday fan faces whopping bill to watch the Owls over Christmas

December promises to be an expensive month for Sheffield Wednesday fans with Christmas, a packed fixture calendar and season ticket renewals, but spare a thought for one supporter facing a bill in the thousands to watch his beloved Owls.

Wednesday, 8th December 2021, 11:56 am
Updated Wednesday, 8th December 2021, 11:56 am

Expat Wednesdayite Jamie Midgley, who was brought up near Park Hill but now lives in New Orleans, is returning home for the festive season to see family and friends and, of course, as many matches as he can fit in.

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Jamie plans to attend games against Accrington Stanley, Burton Albion, Sunderland and Shrewsbury before leaving on January 3.

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Jamie (left) representing the Owls Americas with his dad Don (right) and North Stand season ticket holders Jamie Kelly (second from left) and Dave Hickling.

But with the cost of Covid tests (£130), flights ($1,100), car hire ($1,000) plus a hotel booking for Sunderland and matchday expenses, his bank balance is set to take a bigger thrashing than the one handed to the Owls’ arch rivals on Boxing Day 1979.

“It’s a really expensive trip that has so many unknowns,” he said.

"This is the third time I’ve tried to get home. I haven’t been back for two and a half years.”

Jamie and Don at the 2015/16 Championship play-off final.

Jamie is the son of former Sheffield Labour councillor Pat Midgley, who served the public for 33 years before her death in March 2020.

Pat, who also served a Lord Mayor, passed away after contracting coronavirus, but restrictions meant Jamie was unable to attend her funeral or a ceremony in June when a street in the area where she was born, raised and lived her whole life was renamed after her.

He plans to visit her grave before the Accrington Stanley game on December 18, the day after he arrives in the UK.

"If more politicians were like her the world would be a better place,” Jamie said.

"I’m just looking forward to it. Fingers crossed things don’t get any worse. The guidance has changed three times in the last week.”

Lifelong Owl Jamie, who founded the New Orleans Owls, is planning to take his 89-year-old dad Don to Hillsborough on Boxing Day.

The pair worked on the turnstiles there for 20 years and 40 years respectively.

Jamie added: “He used to take me as a little kid and I would count the money for him. Eventually they offered me a job.

"I approach the games with a bit of dread these days but I wouldn’t change it for the world.”