Bangor City set to make safe standing history

March 2015. Welsh Premier League club Bangor City are looking to make safe standing history by potentially becoming the first football club in the United Kingdom to install and use rail seats.

The North Wales club's ground, the Nanporth Stadium, known for sponsportship purposes as the Book People Stadium, offers 1,100 seats and several areas of flat standing accommodation. Capacity for domestic games is 3,000. However, due to UEFA's all-seater rule for their games, when the club plays in European competitions, which it has done ten times in the new millenium, this is reduced to just 1,100.

An increase in the number of seats would, therefore, clearly increase the capacity for such attractive games. On the flip side, many of the club's fans would like a dedicated standing area behind one of the goals and over recent years the Supporters' Association has been raising money to fund the construction of such an area. Now the club believes it has found the ideal solution to cover all the bases: rail seats. The plan, therefore, is to build a stand with perhaps 500 rail seats at the Menai Bridge End of the ground, which will serve as the 'People's Terrace' for all domestic games and increase seated capacity for European games by almost 50%.

That increased seated capacity would also be useful when the grounds hosts national team matches under UEFA or FIFA auspices, with Wales U21 UEFA qualifiers and a Welsh Women's FIFA World Cup qualifier having already been played at the ground in recent years.

To explain the proposal to interested parties the roadshow visited Bangor in March 2015. The event, hosted by club chairman Dilwyn Jones and Mike Ishmael of the Supporters' Association, was attended by the city's mayor, local politicians, fans and representatives of the media.

A few weeks later, Andrew RT Davies, leader of the Welsh Conservatives, also visited the ground to lend his support to the club's safe standing plans (pictured below with Mike Ishmael, left, and Ethan Ray, right).