The Safety of Sports Grounds (Designation) (Amendment) (England) Order 2023
Commencement: 30th March 2023
Amends: Safety of Sports Grounds Act 1975 (c. 52)
- Those grounds occupied by FA Premiership and Football League clubs with accommodation for over 5,000 spectators; and
- Any sports grounds (i.e. where any other sports are played such as rugby, cricket and also non Premiership or Football League football matches) with accommodation for over 10,000 spectators.
– Any other sports grounds (i.e. where any other sports are played such as rugby, cricket and also non Premiership or Football League football matches) with accommodation for over 10,000 spectators.
A Safety Certificate may be issued for a specified activity or activities for one or more occasions or for an indefinite period.
A Safety Certificate shall contain such terms and conditions as the local authority consider necessary or expedient to secure reasonable safety at the sports ground when it is in use for the specified activity or activities. This may involve alterations or additions to the sports ground. This may include records being kept for the attendance of spectators at the sports ground and records relating to the maintenance of safety at the sports ground.
No condition of a Safety Certificate shall require the service of any members of a police force unless it has been agreed by the chief officer of police of the force. No condition of the Safety Certificate shall require a person to contravene any requirements of the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 and the Fire (Scotland) Act 2005.
A general Safety Certificate shall contain or have attached to it a plan of the sports ground, and the terms and conditions in the Certificate, or in any special Safety Certificate issued for the sports ground, shall be framed, where appropriate, by reference to that plan.
A Safety Certificate may include different terms and conditions in relation to different activities.
Green Guide: see the Guidance section which includes a link to the Guide to Safety at Sports Grounds (Green Guide) which contains guidance on safety certification.
Application Process: the Act sets out provisions concerning the process for application for a Safety Certificate. The Act provides for the local authority to send copies of applications for Safety Certificates to the Chief Officer of Police, and in some cases to the Fire Authority and the Building Authority.
Amendment of Certificates: Safety Certificates can be amended, repealed, replaced, transferred and cancelled.
Appeals: the Act sets out an appeal system in relation to applications for Safety Certificates.
Regulations: the Secretary of state can make regulations requiring records to be kept of attendance of spectators at a sports ground and records relating to the maintenance of safety at sports grounds.
Prohibition Notices: local authorities may issue Prohibition Notices if they are of the opinion that the admission of spectators to a sports ground or any part of a sports ground involves or will involve a risk to them so serious that, until steps have been taken to reduce it to a reasonable level, admission of spectators should be prohibited.
The Prohibition Notice should state that the local authority is of the opinion that the admission of spectators to the ground will involve a risk to them so serious that access should be prohibited. The Notice should state the matters which give rise to the risk, and that no or no more than a specified number of spectators is permitted to the stadium or a specified part of the stadium until the specified matters have been remedied.
The Prohibition Notice may apply to a particular occasion, or generally.
The Prohibition Notice may include directions as to remedial action including alterations to the grounds or things to be done or omitted in the grounds.
The Act sets out further provisions concerning the procedure relating to Prohibition Notices.
Enforcement: it is the duty of every local authority to enforce within their area the requirements of this Act.
Powers of entry and inspection: the Act gives power of entry to the local authority, chief officer of police or in Wales, Greater London or a metropolitan county, the fire authority. The relevant person may enter at any reasonable time, inspect the grounds, make inquiries and inspect records of attendance and maintenance.
Offences: it is an offence to admit spectators to a designated sports where no Safety Certificate has been granted or ion contravention of the terms in a Safety Certificate.
This Order amends The Safety of Sports Grounds (Designation) Order 2015, an older update. From 30th March 2023, the StoneX Stadium, occupied by Saracens Rugby Club, is designated as a sports ground that must hold a safety certificate.
Under Section 1 of the 1975 Act, the Secretary of State may require sports grounds in England and Wales to have a safety certificate if they have accommodation for over 10,000 spectators.
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