Liverpool Fans Vote Overwhelmingly in Favour of Introducing Safe Standing at Football Grounds
Liverpool fans have voted in favour of introducing rail seating at football grounds, by an 88% majority vote, as reported by the Liverpool Echo.
‘Spirit of Shankly’, the Liverpool supporters’ trust asked almost 18,000 fans whether they backed the installment of rail seating areas inside football stadiums, and received an emphatic answer.
The vote is hugely significant given the Anfield club’s associations with the Hillsborough disaster of 1989 in which 96 Liverpool supporters lost their lives, a tragedy that accelerated the move to standardise safer ‘all-seater’ stadiums across the country.
Only 5% of the people asked were opposed to the introduction of rail seating, though the Hillsborough Family Support Group (HFSG) remain officially opposed to the proposal.
Spirit of Shankly stressed that, though they were happy a consensus could be reached among fans, the vote concerned the idea of rail seating in general, rather than a specific proposal to have them introduced at the Merseyside club’s Anfield ground.
Speaking to the press, Jay McKenna, chair of Spirit of Shankly, said: “It’s an incredible turnout, we aren’t aware of such numbers voting before.
“It demonstrates to us that we were right to have this discussion and that supporters, families and survivors want to have their say.
“After nine months of discussion, we have now had the vote and it will be taken as the position for Spirit of Shankly.
“The vote is significant and we know people will see this as backing of rail seating. However we say to anyone who is campaigning for this to understand sensitivities and respect the views of those who disagree.
“No one wins here, this has been a mature and sensitive conversation and we have arrived at a position.”