Norwich City backed by MPs over bid for safe standing

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image source, Getty Images
image captionCarrow Road has a capacity of about 27,000

MPs have supported their local football club's suggestion that standing areas could return to its stadium.

Norwich City has previously raised safety concerns about children and is supporting a review of the legislation around "safe" standing at matches.

As reported in the EDP, a cross-party group of MPs has written to the home secretary.

The government said it had "no plans" to change all-seater stadium laws introduced after Hillsborough.

Standing areas have been banned in the Premier League and Championship since the death of 96 Liverpool supporters in the crush at Hillsborough in 1989.

Three MPs have written to the government - North Norfolk's Norman Lamb (Liberal Democrat), Norwich South's Clive Lewis (Labour) and Norwich North's Chloe Smith (Conservative).

They have urged the Home Secretary Amber Rudd to discuss the terms of the Football Spectators Act of 1989 and the subsequent 1990 Taylor Report recommendations.

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Norwich City wants standing to be reintroduced to parts of Carrow Road.

'No surge'

In December, the club moved 50 season ticket holders from the Barclay stand because of persistent standing.

It followed a warning from the county's safety advisory group that the club faced having its capacity cut because children were standing on seats when their view was obscured by standing adults.

Steve Stone, managing director, had said: "It's got to a point where we've got an unacceptable level of risk to kids."

Neil Thomson, of the Barclay End fans group, welcomed the idea of questioning "outdated" legislation.

"There is no surge from the back in modern stadiums. That kind of crush that happened at Hillsborough could not happen in this environment," he said.

"Generally, the people who want to stand are slightly more vociferous, and that could lead to a better atmosphere."

A Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport spokesman said: "The government has no plans to change its position and introduce standing accommodation at grounds covered by the all-seater requirement."

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