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    Time to take a stand? The law on all-seated stadiums in England and Wales and the case for change

    Rigg, David (2018) Time to take a stand? The law on all-seated stadiums in England and Wales and the case for change. The International Sports Law Journal, 18 (3-4). pp. 210-218. ISSN 1567-7559

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    In June 2018, the UK Government announced a review of the ban on standing at football matches in the Premier League and Championship. Nearly 30 years since the Hillsborough disaster, there is growing interest in the introduction of safe-standing to football grounds in England and Wales. This paper considers official reports dating back to 1924 in an attempt to understand the woeful safety record of UK football grounds in the twentieth century, and the many missed opportunities to secure the safety of fans. The argument is made that Taylor LJ’s lack of trust in both the desire and ability of footballing authorities and clubs to ensure fan safety led him to make all-seating a cornerstone of his vision for football. The current law is then reviewed before considering how safe-standing differs from the crumbling and overcrowded terraces of the 1980s. The paper concludes that stadium and crowd management measures, backed up by a robust regulatory system which has the support of all stakeholders, are necessary to ensure the continuing safety of football fans in England and Wales.

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