Have Your Say on Safe Standing
By Robert Nichols
Wednesday 05 Jul 2017 16:06:00
Browse all Boro Views articles

There are less than a couple of weeks left now to have your say on standing or sitting down on the job at Boro games. This fan survey is designed to test the waters of opinion about whether our fans are in favour of a safe standing option.
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At present it could need legislation to change to allow a Celtic style rail seating to be brought in for the top two divisions in the English game. This standing is not old style terraces but modern, up to date, technology where fans stand in a seated area with a cross bar to hold on to. The advantages of having an area of the ground with lock away seats could mean fans remaining seated in other areas and therefore allowing those who can’t or choose not to stand a better view of the action.

You might not feel this is an issue. But if you have watched Boro away from the Riverside over the past five or six years you will know that the away fans invariably stand at football games. This appears to be the case right across the top two leagues.

These days stewards are likely to allow everyone to stand and in fact it is hard to argue that standing throughout is less safe than suddenly jumping to your feet when there is some goal action. But it does become a factor if you can’t stand up.

This is probably one of the reasons why the Premier League has recently written to all 20 of its clubs to survey their opinions. At present the English games top flight is trying to look closely at all aspects of the situation to see the best way of going forward. We might no longer be part of the top party but we certainly aspire to get back to the table as soon as possible.

We saw last week that a lower league club, Shrewsbury Town, is seeking permission to remove seating from its modern stadium to be replaced by Celtic-style rail-seating. The reason given is that standing usually means better atmosphere. That is certainly the away fan experience.

So, this survey is not going to mean a green or indeed red light to changes at the Riverside. It will probably need government legislation first and then a good period of consultation. But at a time when considerable thought is being given to safe standing trials it is vital that the club, the Football League and also the Premier League know your opinion.

All across the Premier and Championship supporters are having their say and filling out surveys provided by the Football Supporters Association. We have had a good response so far to our questionnaire with 2000 fans filling in the online poll. We want more fans to give their verdict. We want as big a cross section as we possibly can, that means season ticket holders, West Standers, away followers and those Riversiders that attend when they can. All opinion is equally valid and very important.

If you haven’t yet filled in the very quick survey please do. It would be great to hear from you. Vote Now


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