Leeds United fans back re-introduction of safe standing at Elland Road

Rail seating at the Safe Standing Roadshow.
Rail seating at the Safe Standing Roadshow.
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Leeds United fans have backed the re-introduction of safe standing at Elland Road following Tuesday's Safe Standing Roadshow event.

The Leeds United Supporters Trust (LUST) staged the evening to give Whites fans a first hand look at the rail seating that could be returning to the terraces if new legislation is passed by the government.

Fans were also given the opportunity to quiz lead campaigner Jon Darch on the future of standing within the game and raise any concerns they may also have about its implementation at Elland Road in future.

The ban on standing is a legacy of the Hillsborough disaster and was implemented on recommendations made by Lord Justice Taylor’s report following the tragedy. Elland Road has seen standing abolished since 1994 but growing support for its re-introduction has been bubbling for some time among the wider footballing community.

When the Trust polled their members last year a whopping 97% who responded were in favour of its return and a recent petition, which will now see the subject debated in parliament, received over 111,000 signatures following sports minister Tracey Crouch's refusal to approve West Bromich Albion's request to introduce safe standing at the Hawthorns earlier this year.

Last month the EFL also issued its ‘Stand up for Choice’ questionnaire which set out with the aim of polling all supporters within the Football League over whether they would like to see standing return as an option to the English game.

The results are yet to be published by the EFL but on Tuesday evening support for its re-introduction among United's support appeared unified.

Tom Darksen, who stands in the south stand at Elland Road with his son, said his mind is already made up: "I'm an advocate, definitely.

"There's no making my mind up I think we should be having safe standing. We do feel it would be better all round and the atmosphere it creates is far superior to sitting."

Jeff Brown, who stands in the Kop for every home game, echoes his fellow supporters thoughts: "I enjoy the game far more standing. I don't know why but I have always stood since the 60s. I think the atmosphere is better, when I've been in seated grounds it seems to drain it away."

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