English Championship football club Brentford has been given approval to retain terracing at its home ground after receiving dispensation from the Sports Ground Safety Authority.
When clubs are promoted into the second division of English football, they are allowed a three-year grace period to convert terracing into seating. Brentford’s Griffin Park stadium has been its home ground since 1904.
Brentford returned to the second tier in 2014, and alterations had been due at Griffin Park.
Terraces were banned from major football grounds in England in the early 1990s following the Hillsborough disaster.
Brentford has recently moved forward in its progress towards building a new 20,000-capacity Lionel Road community stadium. The club has also been commended for its fine safety record in the Ealing Road and Brook Road terraces at Griffin Park. As a result, the terraces will remain a feature at the stadium for next season, subject to approval from the Secretary of State.
Brentford chief executive Mark Devlin said: “We would like to place on record our thanks to the SGSA board for allowing us a chance to present our case and for giving us a fair hearing.
“The introduction of seats into terraced areas of Griffin Park would have reduced our capacity by approximately 1,600. This is hugely positive news as this would have had a significantly damaging impact on our revenues and ability to grow our fan base.”
The club’s plans for a new stadium moved a step closer last month after Hounslow Council carried out a general vesting declaration (GVD) to activate a compulsory purchase order. Brentford has now moved to press ahead with the development plans and work is likely to begin next year.
The club also announced that its season tickets for the 2017-18 season went on sale yesterday (Wednesday).