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Introduce safe standing, urges new report

Filed: Thursday, 11th August 2016
By: Staff Writer

A new report has called upon the Government to investigate the possibility of re-introducing safe standing at football in England.

The Adam Smith Institute, an independent think tank/quango has written to Sports Minister Tracey Crouch urging her to repeal the ban on standing at professional clubs.

The organisation claim that there is no reason to continue with all-seater stadiums, whilst insisting that the vast majority of football supporters would like to see safe standing areas introduced.

Ben Southwood, the Instutute's Head of Research told the FSF that a blanket ban on standing was now completely outdated. "The ban is an anachronism," he said. "Clubs across Europe have rail seating sections with no incident, creating superior atmosphere and allowing for a cheaper tier of tickets.

"Unlike the adversarial attitude police, club organisations and fans had during the dark days of the 1980s, we now know how to manage large crowds well. The ban doesn’t fit. Tracey Crouch doesn’t need to pass a law, she has the power to simply undo the prohibition on safe standing—and she should."

Scottish Premier League side Celtic re-introduced a safe standing area at Celtic Park this summer. Around 2,900 places were made available to those who wish to stand throughout a match.

And even some of those affected in the past by tragedy believe safe standing is the way to go; David Lafferty was at the 1971 Glasgow derby in which 66 Rangers fans died following a crush, but firmly believes seating should be reintroduced.

“I’m a season ticket holder in the safe standing area of Celtic Park and this is the same area where we stood even before the new safety barriers were installed," he said.

"I can assure everyone that we have so much room and each and every seat has its own safety barrier. I have been to many stadiums around Europe including Anfield and I can assure the families of the 96 that I have never felt safer in any stadium as in our new section."

Rather closer to home, the move to bring back standing on the terraces has been consistently backed by West Ham's co-owner David Gold, who took to Twitter yesterday to reiterate his stance in the wake of critcism concerning West Ham's move to Stratford.

Gold was commenting in the wake of heavy criticism regarding the migration policy that has led to numerous problems between West Ham supporters at the Olympic Stadium, some of whom wish to stand and others who prefer to sit.

You may read the Adam Smith Institute's full report into the viability of safe standing on their website.

Related News

   arrow   In brief - Thursday's news round-up [30th Aug 2018]
   arrow   In brief - Tuesday's news round-up [10th Apr 2018]
   arrow   Premier League safe standing bid rejected [9th Apr 2018]
   arrow   Valencia, Payet, Carroll & Sakho: Friday's news [18th Nov 2016]
   arrow   Gold optimistic over safe standing return [17th Nov 2016]
   arrow   Safe standing back on the agenda [11th Nov 2016]
   arrow   In brief - Monday's news round-up [12th Sep 2016]
   arrow   Bilic, Kouyate, Payet & Calleri: Friday's news [12th Aug 2016]
   arrow   Introduce safe standing, urges new report [11th Aug 2016]
   arrow   Ayew, Bacca, Noble & Carroll: Tuesday's news [9th Aug 2016]

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