Tag Archives: Safe standing

Safe Standing: Stop being the “minority voice”

At the minute, the Government are right. It is just a “minority of voices” calling for Safe Standing.

Whilst various surveys of fans of individual clubs has shown an over whelming favour of bringing back Safe Standing, a Parliamentary Petition on the matter is currently showing a different answer.

At the time of writing, little over 28,000 fans have signed the Safe Standing petition.

To put that into perspective, that is just 300 people per the 92 professional clubs in England.

That is why the government can get away with saying it is a “minority of voices”.

750,000 people attend games in the top 4 divisions in England every weekend.

Only 3.7% have signed this petition

Don’t just sit moaning that you are Against Modern Football on Twitter.

Show to the Government that it is not the “minority” of fans that want Safe Standing.

Sign the petition.

How Arsenal’s Stadium would look with safe standing

What began as me messing about on paint to see how Arsenal should shift around the seating has turned into a little afternoon read for those commuting back. This might especially be needed if, like me, you have to go through Vauxhall on that journey. Good luck.

Recently Celtic have announced they will go ahead with plans for Safe Standing next season. The natural thought of this was “If it happens in Scotland it is only time until it happens in England.” Especially as the removal of standing in football ground was based on the Taylor Report, which came out of the Hillsborough disaster. The recent inquest announced fans were not to blame. Therefore making the Taylor reports direction on standing in grounds invalid.

So I created a Safe Standing area at Arsenal’s Stadium.

Blocks 6 – 11.

Block 6 is where RedAction attempted to get a lot of like minded fans to pick their season ticket in when the move first happened. The idea being it would create a bit of a singing section (cringe) at the new stadium.

To some part it worked. Most of the noise starts either from block 6, or block 11. In block 6 they already rarely sit down.

In fact, behind the goals from block 6 – 11 fans rarely sit down these days. A safe standing section seems to already be nearly in place. I sit block 11 and have certainly noticed over the last 2 seasons that stewards are a little less Nazi-like when it comes to standing in block 11. Stand in block 12 though and they are on you.

So in my idea of a perfect stadium setting, blocks 6 through to 11 become safe standing. Easily implementing the rail seat technology used in Germany. These area’s would remain season ticket only – unless bought on the ticket exchange. The amount of people in these area’s would not increase. Although I am sure a few would sneak there way in to stand with their pal, like they already often do in block 6.

That way, we have safe standing, with enough space to be comfortable, and the seating in place for European games, where standing is still frowned upon by UEFA.

But what if you do not want to stand? I hear you ask? Well it will be a simple procedure.

When the season ticket renewals come out, those in that area are explained that from the next season, there seat will be standing. If they wish to renew, they need to do nothing. If they do not wish to stand, they need to note that in the renewal, and they will be re-seated, alongside any corresponding seat numbers they indicate in the renewal. IE so they recent people who already sit next to each other.

Whilst this is happening, in the other renewals for those outside of the safe standing area, they also have an option. There option is that if a place comes available, do they want to move their seat to safe standing.

Answer yes, they get added to a waiting list for the safe standing area. Now in the first season, there will be plenty in the safe standing area who wish to be reseated, and plenty in the lower tier who wish to be in the safe standing, It should not be that had to reseat those who do not wish to stand into other parts of the lower tier, alongside who they currently sit with.

Everyone’s happy.

As the discussion went further in my head, other issues arose.

  • Reclaim the Clockend
  • Family Enclosure
  • Young Guns Enclosure
  • Cannon Club

Firstly let me address blocks 12-19. these are currently season ticker holders seats, and will remain so. The only change being if people from those seats indicate a wish to move to the safe standing. There places replaced by people who wish to not be in the safe standing zone.

20 – 23 are away fans. With 23 becoming general sale if we play a rubbish club like WBA who bring barely 1,000 and return more than half their tickets.

Reclaim the Clock Endhas been a movement for a while now. People who previously sat in the Clock End Highbury wishing to return to the Clock End Ashburton. Currently taken up by general sale and the Young Guns Enclosure.

This will never happen for 3 reasons.

  1. A lot of stadiums now seat kids next to the away end to reduce tensions. The idea being that a bunch of kids is easier to steward than 500 pissed up men goading each other. And it is true. At Cardiff, once a volatile atmosphere at Ninian Park, you now have kids next to both ends of the away fans in the new stadium. It takes the bite out of the area. I do not disagree with it, but can also can not see it changing
  2. At Highbury, when we played a cup game, the away team had the whole Clock End. All season ticket holders than had to be relocated throughout the stadium. This was much to the annoyance to the rank and file regulars. When we moved, high on the agenda was not having to move season ticket holders. So a decision was made that 24 & 25 would be general admission. That way for an FA Cup game, no one gets moved. I agree with this.
  3. With safe standing, those who want a return to the Clock End surely get their wish in the North Bank

So block 24 remains as is, general sale, and block 25 also remains as the Young Guns Enclosure / General Sale, with the club pushing the Young Guns Enclosure more and instructing the stewards in the area that they are their to ensure safety, not police. No need for lines of them kettling and restricting the Young Guns.

Skipping blocks 26 – 30 for now, we come to 31. 32 & 1. These remain the same. For the weirdos who want to sit behind the dug out, wearing fluorescent green clothing. As you were lads.

Blocks 2, 3 and 4 becomes the new family enclosure. Why move the family enclosure?

When I was a kid, I loved watching the team warm up. All kids do. The family enclosure should be on the side of the pitch the team warm up on. Also, in front of those blocks the subs warm up. Youngsters will love it. We need to think of all fans. I would also have these 3 blocks as no single cannon club tickets. IE if you are not going with a JG but are Cannon Club, you do not sit here.

I remember back at Highbury. The family enclosure was in the East Stand. When you became a Cannon Club member, unless you were buying a ticket with a Junior Gunner, you got your tickets in the West Stand, next to the away fans. It felt like a kind of promotion.

In the same thinking, block 5 would then become a Cannon Club block. With Cannon Club members who are not with a Junior Gunner. It is a step closer to the safe standing section, a step closer to adulthood.

But now we have blocks 2 – 5 where fans have been displaced. These basically go to where the family enclosure currently is. Blocks 26 – 30. Within these blocks, you take those who were in blocks 2 – 5 (it is an identical view) as well as the over fill from those who do not want to be in the safe standing and require relocating.

Club level remains wankers.

Upper Tier remains as is, unless more safe standing places arise and they wish to move down.

So my view of how the stadium should look (using paint):

Arsenal stadium

Thoughts?

Keenos

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Safe Standing Petition: Have you signed it yet?

By now I am sure you all would have read the survey results put out by the Black Scarf Movement (BSM). IF not, ensure you get them read here.

One of the most conclusive answers in the survey was with regards to Safe Standing, with 91.5% of all those surveyed in favour of it. This lead to a groundswell of support to the theory that not only should we look at implementing Safe Standing within the Emirates Stadium, but The Arsenal should be leading the campaign on behalf of all Premier League Clubs.

Arsenal Football Club has a deep and rich history in being leaders, promoting initiatives, our list of ‘firsts’:

  • Arsenal were the first team to use numbers on the back of their shirts
  • Arsenal were the first team to play a match broadcast live on radio
  • Arsenal were the first team to install floodlights in their ground
  • First team to play in a match broadcast live on TV
  • First team to play a match broadcast live in 3D TV

Under Herbert Chapman, we were seen as world leaders in football initiatives, with much of what he bought in then been exported to the global game. In the same sense, the current Arsenal Board should embody the memory of Chapman and lead the campaign for Safe Standing in English football.

Following the BSM’s survey on the atmosphere at the Emirates, and the support which it highlight, Arsenal supporters group REDaction added their support to the initiative, saying:

“The push for safe standing in the Premier League is gathering pace…both Arsene Wenger and Ivan Gazidis have also said that they think safe standing is a good idea…REDaction think safe standing is an issue that Arsenal should use their respected position in the football world to lead the way on.”

They state that the current problem is that whilst many clubs are saying, often officially, that they would support Safe standing if it was bought in, not enough are standing up (excuse the pun) and willing to lead the fight against the Premier League and UK Government. It is their belief, as it is ours, that Arsenal should lead that fight. With our history of being “innovators in football, pushing ideas that seemed revolutionary or even impossible at the time.”

They have begun a petition, which they will present to the board, demanding that Arsenal should lead the push for standing. The board often say they are custodians of the club, on behalf of the fans, if they believe this, they must stand alongside the fans once presented with evidence of thousands of signatures by fans demanding our club lead from the front.

What we are She Wore are asking is that you add your signature to the list. Whether you are a season ticket holder who go’s week in week out, a red member who go’s once a year, or a fan who has perhaps never been, add your signature. Arsenal fans need to stand side by side on this matter, show a collective force.

Even if you do not wish to stand yourself, add your signature, what REDaction and the BSM is asking for is not the entire stadium to be standing, but for those who wish to stand can, in their designated Safe standing area. This will actually benefit those who wish to sit as no longer will they have someone standing in front of them.

And if you live abroad and have never been, add your signature. One day you will go to a game. And one day you will want to go to the Emirates and stand. Look at Dortmund, people travel far and wide to stand in their end. Do not deny yourself a similar opportunity to do the same at Arsenal by not signing the petition.

There is no justifiable reason to not allow standing. The disasters of Bradford and Hillsborough were not caused by people standing. Not allowing Safe standing is a form of control.

Arsenal fans need to stand together. English football needs to stand together. Sign the petition. Let Arsenal be leaders once more.

GC