Lincoln City has become the latest English football club to confirm the introduction of safe standing to its stadium.
Following further consultation with safety authorities, the League One outfit has confirmed plans for the introduction of a safe standing section at the LNER Stadium.
Phase one will be to install independent barriers in the whole of block Upper 7 of the GBM Stand. Whereas a rail seat is a manufactured product which incorporates a seat and a barrier together, independent barriers are a separate installation from the seat itself, and Lincoln said it has worked closely with a number of other clubs where barriers have already been successfully installed.
The club is currently working through the technical specifications and safety management plans with the intention of installing barriers for the start of 2023-24 season. Tickets in this block will be sold as ‘seats in an area where standing is permitted’ and seat swaps will be made available for supporters who would like to move out of, or into, this area of the stadium.
Lincoln said: “The work the club has done to reach this stage has been highly commended by the authorities and governing bodies, and this commitment to both safety and fan experience at the LNER Stadium has been made possible by further capital investment by the club board and investors.”
Lincoln added that while there is currently no plans to expand safe standing in the GBM Stand, it is hoping to install rail seats in the Stacey West Stand. The club noted that while current legislation states that standing must only replace seating on a ratio of 1:1, meaning no increase in capacity, if this changes, rail seats would facilitate this more readily in that stand.
Lincoln’s safe standing vision was detailed in November as the club revised plans for the redevelopment of the Stacey West Stand, with the project to proceed with a two-tier structure.
Lincoln had originally planned a three-tier stand featuring a hospitality level but this has been scaled back, with the club citing the current economic climate.