Shropshire

Football safe standing: Shrewsbury Town fundraising opens

Safe standing
Image caption Shrewsbury Town became the first English club to apply to have safe standing at their ground

Shrewsbury Town fans have launched a crowdfunding campaign to raise money to introduce safe standing at the club's ground.

The Supporters' Parliament wants £75,000 to be found for the proposed installation of about 400 rail seats in one section of the stadium.

The League One side became the first English club to apply to have safe standing.

The club aims to have rail seats fitted and in use before the end of 2017-18.

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Rail seating, similar to the system at the ground of Scottish champions Celtic, is a safe standing area featuring retractable seats.

Shrewsbury's Montgomery Waters Meadow is 10 years old so is not governed by the all-seater stadiums legislation which permits clubs in Leagues One and Two to keep terraces that existed before 1994.

Standing has been banned in England's top two divisions since then.

That law change followed recommendations made in the Taylor Report into the 1989 Hillsborough disaster, which claimed the lives of 96 Liverpool fans.

Joint chairman of the Shrewsbury Town Supporters' Parliament Roger Groves said it was "extremely confident" of raising the amount by 12 September.

Asked what would happen if not enough money was found by then, he said it was "not going to fail" and he thought the planned scheme would "get good support from a wider audience" of fans of other clubs who want this to succeed.

Mr Groves said more than £6,000 had been raised since fundraising started on Tuesday. Donations are being invited from fans and the public in return for 'rewards' from the club.

Mr Groves said if safe standing was installed towards the end of the coming season, it would "give supporters a taste" ahead of a proposed first full season of the initiative.

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