South Shields Football Club has been praised for being on the ball after opening up again at the weekend.

The club reopened its marquee in line with Government protocols on Saturday and during the course of the day, dozens of socially distanced fans and members of the community visited to show their support.

Groups of up to six were able to pre-book indoor tables, while the remaining indoor and outdoor tables were available on a first-come, first-served basis.

One supporter, @KrissNufc12, wrote on Twitter: “Have to say a massive well done to all the staff at South Shields FC. I had a table from 3-6pm and the bar staff were bang on top with the service and cleaning things down and everyone maintaining social distancing. Great effort.”

Ronnie Peet added: “Had a great time at South Shields FC. They are playing a part in building our community back up. Made a difficult situation into a form of normal. Hopefully more will come down once they know safety precautions are good.”

On Facebook, Les Payn said: “Enjoyed the experience very much. I was a little apprehensive, but the measures in place were spot on and everyone must have felt safe. Very relaxed. People on social media predicted drunken mayhem, and I knew it was never gonna happen here. Such was the case for most of the venues that opened. Well done to all the staff. See you next week.”

Graeme Milne added: “Had a really good time and it was good to see everyone! Thank you Shields FC.”

John Melville posted: “You can’t change or add to the experience we all had… well organised brilliant.”

The club is again open this weekend and tables can be pre-booked, with any unbooked tables available on a first-come, first-served basis.

The marquee will be open on Friday between 5pm and 11pm, Saturday from 12pm to 11pm and Sunday from 12pm to 6pm.

Tables can be booked in three-hour time slots and the club requests a £10 deposit per table per time slot.

The time slots available are as follows:

Friday: 5-8pm, 8-11pm (other variables available on request).

Saturday: 12-3pm, 3-6pm, 6-close.

Sunday: 12-3pm, 3-6pm (other variables available on request).

Supporters are reminded that all payments at Mariners Park must be made by card – either contactless or chip and pin – and it is table service only. Walk-ins are welcome providing tables are not fully booked.

To book a table, please call or send a text message to 07519862723, or send the club a direct message on Twitter or Facebook.

We would like to reiterate our thanks to all those who have shown their support for the club over recent months by purchasing season tickets and renewing sponsorship packages, as well as those who have bought tickets for our inaugural online 50/50 draw and backed other club initiatives.

This has been a huge assistance to us and is helping to ensure the club has the funds needed to continue operating while there is no football.

We realise that not everyone is currently in a position to contribute, and ask all South Shields fans to remember that we are always grateful for their support, whatever form that takes.

Please continue to stay safe, look after those closest to you and heed the Government’s instructions.

We look forward to welcoming you back to Mariners Park with open arms whenever you feel the time is right.

Two new dugouts and a turnstile block have been installed at Mariners Park as part of planned summer improvement works.

The dugouts have been moved to the side of the pitch closest to the current main stand in order to give quicker access to the dressing rooms and improve the vantage points on the Shaftesbury Avenue side of the ground ahead of the planned installation of a new stand within the next year.

The new turnstile, meanwhile, provides another entry point to the ground, close to the Metro underpass beside the 3G pitch. This will be accessible for the 2020-21 season.

The club would like to thank Stadium Solutions for their work in manufacturing and installing the dugouts and turnstile.

We look forward to the day we are able to welcome supporters through the new turnstile and players and staff into the new dugouts.

We would also like to thank all supporters for their continued backing and hope you are continuing to stay safe and healthy.

We all miss football dearly but it will be back as soon as it is safe. Always remember that every day which passes is another day closer to that.

Tickets are on sale for two special Christmas events at Mariners Park in 2020.

Amid the uncertainty and sadness of the coronavirus pandemic, the club wished to give its supporters and members of the public some events to look forward to and so took the decision to announce its plans for a Christmas party and Christmas Day lunch.

Should stringent social distancing measures still be in place in December and make either event impossible to hold, ticket holders will be refunded or offered the chance to switch their booking to another date.

The club’s pre-Christmas party will take place on Friday, December 4. Entertainment will be provided by singer, songwriter and instrumentalist Jodie Fitzgibbon, with a two-course meal and half a bottle of wine per person also included in the £19.95 ticket price.

Meanwhile, allow us to take away the stress of cooking on Christmas Day by enjoying lunch with us at Mariners Park.

The menu for the lunch can be found in the image below. Lunch is priced at £34.95 for adults and £24.95 for Under-16s, and at this stage we request a £10 deposit if you would like to book.

If you would like to attend either event, please call 0191 454 7800 or email info@southshieldsfc.co.uk