Football Focus Issue 75 - Page 11

Arena Seating Plenty of clubs called in Arena Seating because of this rule change, and since the summer of 2016 we have installed more than 2,000 seats at 14 different Welsh football clubs, improving the spectator experience and enhancing facilities. The clubs we’ve worked with range from Llanfair and Guilsfield in Mid Wales down to Baglan near Port Talbot and Goytre and Cwmbran down in the South East of the country close to the English border. Taff Wells, Ryhope, Holywell, Caldicott, Berriew, Rushhall, Abercan and Saltney are the other football clubs we’ve supplied seating to in the past year. We’ve also worked at Cardiff House of Sport, the high-quality cluster of sports facilities a stone’s throw from the Cardiff City Stadium. Aside from the new FAW regulations, Cardiff Metropolitan Uni FC turned to Arena Seating because of promotion from Welsh League Division One to the Welsh Premier League, meaning they had to improve their facilities ahead of facing the likes of The New Saints and Cefn Druids. At all the venues and clubs listed above we used our Sports Stand range, these range from bespoke and off-the- shelf products, which were designed with lower league clubs or professional standard training grounds in mind. The stands are pre-fabricated to the requirements of each ground and put into a concrete base, which the clubs often put in themselves with the help of supportive local tradesmen, they conform to all the relevant health and safety guidelines and, crucially, adhere to the Green Guide to Safety at Sports Grounds, now in its sixth edition and the global benchmark for keeping sports spectators safe. These Sports Stands help football clubs take on and meet the challenge of new rules without having to spend an outlandish amount. None of the places we have worked in the past year were new stadiums, just existing grounds that needed improvement. When we work with non-league clubs we always bear in mind things like seat colours (which we can customise to match the club’s kit or crest) and leaving space for advertising boards. The ability to make extra revenue from advertising space on our stands can be key for smaller clubs. They can be fenced off at night to prevent vandalism, and come as terrace or seated. We can add media facilities and camera gantries to enhance them, along with spaces for disabled spectators. Most importantly of all, all the clubs that we’ve been working with can now offer fans the chance to escape the elements and watch their teams from the seats. “Ydych chi’n eistedd yn gyfforddus?” (are you sitting comfortably?). Thanks to our seats, thousands of Welsh football fans can now say they are. 11