November 2016. Safe standing in England and Wales has come a major step
closer with the 20 Premier League clubs formally discussing the subject at a
chairmen’s meeting for the first time ever.
As a result of their meeting, the clubs “tasked the Premier League with scoping out the safety, supporter, technical and legislative issues surrounding safe standing” to enable further fact-based discussions to take place.
While the Football League had consulted its 72 clubs about
rail seating in December 2013, the Premier League had not until now held any
formal discussions on the topic with its clubs. The outcome of the EFL
consultation was a mandate for the League executive from 77% of its member
clubs to “approach the minister for
sport to request that the 'all-seater' stadia requirement for Championship
clubs be reviewed with a view to the re-introduction of standing accommodation”.
With the Premier League now taking what West Ham co-chairman David Gold called “probably the first step” towards the introduction of safe standing, the prospect of a joined-up approach to government on the issue from the EPL and EFL together now seems much greater.
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