Crystal Palace are the latest club to back the Football Supporters’ Federation’s (FSF) Standing Campaign with co-chairman Steve Browett saying he “fully supports the introduction of a pilot scheme to test safe standing in our football stadiums.”
Speaking to local newspaper the Croydon Advertiser, Mr Browett added: “It would appear to me that rail seating could be a safer option, as it is already used successfully and safely in Germany.” Palace Independent Supporters' Association and the Crystal Palace Supporters' Trust both backed Mr Browett stance.
- Get involved and support the Safe Standing Campaign here.
Crystal Palace join a growing number of clubs in the top two divisions of English football to publicly back the Safe Standing Campaign. In recent months Aston Villa, Derby County, Hull City and Peterborough United have all said they back the FSF’s Safe Standing Campaign.
Palace fan and journalist Andrew Saunders shares the views of Mr Browett, telling the FSF: “Any right minded person must surely see that the rail seating model being proposed is the most logical step forward to deal with demand from football fans for standing areas.
“The recent Hillsborough report has dispelled, once and for all, the myth that standing was a contributory cause to the disaster, so surely there can be no better time than now for the authorities to therefore acknowledge the current all-seater requirement is unjustified, and that is has also been proved unenforceable throughout the country.
“There are games at Selhurst now where we have almost half the stadium standing for the entire 90 minutes, so why are we not catering for these people?”
Calls grow louder
The calls for safe standing are growing ever louder with the new campaign being launched by the Football Supporters’ Federation in conjunction with Roger Godsiff MP as well as pro-standing groups such as Stand Up Sit Down and the Safe Standing Roadshow.
Speaking to the Croydon Advertiser, the Safe Standing Roadshow’s Jon Darch said that the prospect of Palace fans being allowed to stand during matches was edging closer. “When I came to Selhurst Park last December, I was very pleased to find the club keen to explore the concept.”
“For the chairman to now follow that up with his comments this week is very good news indeed and adds to the support being expressed by other clubs. If all goes well, clubs like Crystal Palace may soon be able to offer their singing sections designated safe standing.”
The cornerstone of the activity is Early Day Motion (EDM) 573, submitted by Mr Godsiff, which acknowledges the “widespread support” for safe standing technology and recognises the success of safe standing areas throughout Europe, including in Germany’s Bundesliga.
The FSF would encourage all football supporters to get in touch with their local MPs, explaining the need to trial safe standing areas - the more MPs who sign EDM 573 the better. Take a few minutes of your time, make a difference, and back the FSF’s Safe Standing Campaign here.
Get involved: www.fsf.org.uk/campaigns/safestanding
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