There is no admission fee to Salut! Sunderland, no Murdoch-style paywall to climb before you reach the delights of Sixer, Jake, John McCormick, Malcolm Dawson, Ken Gambles and so many others. But we need help to stay afloat. Hosting costs threaten to rise and we need to pay the bills and, with a bit of luck, find it possible to reward – however modestly – those who give their time and effort to making the site what it is …
For a long time, I have been apologising for the price of Salut! Sunderland mugs. They are better than lots you see in shops, and better value than some, but £11 is simply too much to ask for something to put your coffee or tea in.
The problem has been the postage. It went from being free for UK orders to costing nearly £3 for a single mug. And they no longer deliver abroad at all.
This has not stopped many readers from becoming owners of the famous item. I will do a count one day and report on how many have won mugs in Guess the Score, qualified for them on becoming Friends of Salut! Sunderland or – more rarely – bought the wretched things.
All the same, I have been looking at other suppliers.
One looked highly promising until I did the calculation, added the missing VAT and even stiffer postal charges, and realised the cost price was higher than what the existing supplier charges.
So I went back to the original supplier and saw that by choosing a monotone design – still colour for the images, but no red rim – I could reduce the cost significantly.
That means I can now offer a choice of Salut! Sunderland mugs – see the range below – for £9, still at the top end of what I believe they’re worth but the best that can be done if the effort is worth making at all.
I may also, with a new supplier, have found a way of offering mugs for overseas purchasers. That would be more expensive – I worked it out as £12 for, say, Canada – but there may be room for manoeuvre. Watch this space on that.
And don’t forget that anyone supporting the site to the extent of signing up as Friend of Salut! Sunderland, for a one-off subscription of £20, receives a mug as part of the deal. Soon, a roll of honour of those who have already done so – or are chosen by me as deserving of honorary Friendships in return for favours done – will appear on the site.
Here, then, are the current options. It is pointless to be more ambitious about other possible merchandise items – clothing, trinkets, bags etc – until I can assess what interest there is in this modest re-launch of Be a Mug for Sunderland. You can use the Add to Cart and Buy Now buttons to order even if you do not have a Paypal account.
Or become a Friend of Salut! Sunderland for £20 and receive a mug in the post. Until I have clarified the postage issue, overseas readers interested in this are asked to nominate a UK address to which the mugs can be sent.