Terraces. Should They Return?

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Terraces. Should They Return?

Postby SE13 » Sat Jul 28, 2007 3:58 pm

Something I wrote a while ago, and maybe worthy of a debate here

The grand old days of terraces. The way we were brought up on football. Remember the days of maximum crowds, and that board outside stating that the ground was full. Remember the surges, the atmosphere being electric, those cheap tickets and most of all, the sheer passion of the supporters and the constant terrace chants.

Sadly there was in incident at Hillsborough in 1989 that changed the shape of football as we then knew it. It changed the shape of how we see the beautiful game, and ultimately killed the grounds as we knew them. I am certain that everyone is aware of the Hillsborough Disaster, and the findings of the subsequent enquiry. However this finding virtually laid all the blame with terraces, which in my opinion was wrong. Whichever way you look at that disaster, in no way was terracing to blame.

That report from Justice Taylor then dictated that we can now only sit to see the game of football within the grounds. That report from Justice Taylor has effectively priced the average supporter out of the game, killed the atmosphere within the grounds, and forced many teams to rebuild new stadia.

This is the same Justice Taylor that simply had no idea of football or it's passion. Had he ever attended a game of football? Perhaps we will never know, but I feel certain that he hasn't.

Terracing is perfectly safe, when controlled. I look to two examples here, firstly that of Highbury, where 20,000 used to stand behind the goal at The North Bank End. In 1989 it cost £8 to see the North London derby, where in 2006 it was £46. Take a look at the inflation rate, and justify that price hike. Secondly, Highbury used to hold 60,000 supporters prior to seating, a figure that Ashburton Grove at almost twice the size now holds.

Seats had to be paid for, as did the new grounds, so where else would the various clubs gain the revenue, but from the supporters. People will always want to go to the football, so for every person now priced out of the market, there is a "Hornby" to replace them. The clubs don't care, the money is still coming in, and people are sitting on the seats. The supporter of old is now discarded into a pile of "has-beens", with the attitude of "We've had their money, now let's have someone elses"

Terracing can be re-introduced as long as everything is controlled. An area dedicated for 10,000 people standing can be restricted to 10,000 quite easily, as the technology is there, and begging to be used. Let us take a short trip to Old Trafford. The Stretford End could easily have terraces on the lower tier, which would increase the capacity by anything up to 10,000. The standing prices are cheaper, the capacity greater, thus the revenue increases. This is not to mention the now increased atmosphere, not only from the standing areas, but from the ground in general, as noise tends to breed noise. I move to the brand new Ashburton Grove, where everything seems to beg for a lower tier terrace. Can you imagine how a move from "The Library" to their new home would be made all the more passionate with thousands of supporters behind the goal bouncing, generating noise, and having the time of their lives would make the difference?

Controlled terraces can and should be the future of football, after all, I was never asked whether I want to sit, I was forced to do so. I was never asked if it was ok to fund the new seats out of my pocket, it was forced on me. And ultimately, I despise the fact that no-one consulted me as to how I wish to view the game, despite having attended the best part of a thousand games. Yes, that bit was forced on me as well.

In summary, can we really recreate the glory days of terraces? I think not, but we can certainly push close, and attract the real supporters back into the grounds.
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Please note that my comments are my own view, and not that of GoonersWorld. Everything I write is subject to © 2007-2013, and is my own work unless quoted otherwise.
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Postby REG » Sat Jul 28, 2007 7:50 pm

Well i heard from friends over the Arsenal that if the Emirates had Highbury's size seats that an amazing ammount of 22,000 Gooners would be going each week says Charlie George
I personally don't want to go back to terreces as i'm scared for my safety with news reports of Hillsbrough etc
In the old days that the people would piss in your pockets in which i've been told a couple of times by different fans about (must of had a good aim :mrgreen: )
I'm a Gooner that grew up seating down to watch a match in the East Upper who never stood up expect when a goal went in
Nowadays at the Emirates i have a seat in the North Bank where i sing & have a good time in front row so i don't always stand up as i don't want to be in the way of anyone
The only times i have stood up for a whole match has been a Enfield friendly, Barnet & when i sat in the clock end (plus over Market road)
If we do switch the lower part of the stadium to standing then we will be 'different' to the rest of them
Sure tickets will be cheap which i can guess around £15 would be the cost of going each week which is very fair to those that rarely go
Football is not cheap now, the only time i have been able to buy a cheap ticket was a tenner over the Spurs to watch Southend play, plus Portgual over the Emirates via a mate
I wouldn't mind a 80,000 or so Emirates but 60,000 at the moment is big enough in my view as 20,000 more Gooners each game is wonderful to see
Even pre season games are going for big money (tomorrow) & are sold out, there's far too many club level seats which no one can really afford every week
Arsenal is growing off field rather than on at the moment, Pele even adimts to watch Arsenal most of the time which is wonderful to hear
Coming home from the stadium today is was different to see that so many cultures go & watch the Arsenal
Standing though is something that may make a comeback & i'm sure that fans wouldn't mind stading in the lower tiers as long as there cheap
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Postby Fordy » Sat Jul 28, 2007 8:09 pm

i used to love standing its not the same now for me the passion as gone from the grounds im not saying it is not there but i remember the early 90's late 80's there was a lot more buzz around the grounds
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Postby SE13 » Sat Jul 28, 2007 9:02 pm

Naturally the money comes first, which is the major reason why seats will never be replaced, after all, why give up £45 for a bum on a seat, to gain half that for two feet on a step.

That sums it all up for me really. The sad way that football has gone. True supporters priced out of the market in the interests of greed.

It has nothing to do with safety, after all, there is such a thing as safe terracing at countless Countries around The Globe, and realistically, prior to Hillsborough there was never an issue with terraces.

I am annoyed by the fact that someone who had no interest in football, nor it's culture was the person to dictate to me how to watch the match, and ultimately price me out of it.

The entire enquiry was a farce, because the terraces were to blame, so said the enquiry. WRONG, the pens within the terraces not being open, and people not being moved into the right areas was to blame. And too many people being allowed access without being pointed in the right direction.

Now I am not going to go into the full details, as they are horrific, but a close friend was at the game, and saw everything unfold from the stand running down the side of the ground. And I trust his word! And the subsequent documentaries would back up everything I have mentioned.
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Postby Miss Lovely » Sat Jul 28, 2007 9:57 pm

Fordy wrote:i used to love standing its not the same now for me the passion as gone from the grounds im not saying it is not there but i remember the early 90's late 80's there was a lot more buzz around the grounds



I used to like standing on the North Bank even tho i always got squashed against the barrier cos i'm little. I think there should be terraced areas in grounds for the ones that like to stand.
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Postby Libertine » Sun Jul 29, 2007 7:33 am

I always loved standing at football.
Even when they brought in all seater stadiums, we still stood up on the tick tock.


People moan about the lack of atmosphere at modern grounds. I believe that is directly due to making fans sit down.
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Postby rvtheace » Tue Jul 31, 2007 8:19 am

The pricing for tickets is ridiculous, it is truly testament to our popularity that we still manage to pack in the crowds week-in-week-out.
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Postby ozgooner » Tue Jul 31, 2007 8:31 am

even in rugby league here in oz the vast majority of tickets are seated . all the big stadiums are seated only and it is only the smaller suburban grounds that still have areas for people to stand . i can remember going to games with my dad when i was only 7 or 8 (some 25 years ago :( )and all the dads would lift their sons up into trees near the fence so we could see the game properly . we would be sittin in what we thought were the best spots in the whole ground with a pie and a coke , whilst all the dads would be standin on the hill in front of us drinkin beers and yellin abuse at the referees .

aaaahhhh , they were the good old days
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Postby CLS » Tue Jul 31, 2007 9:40 am

they were the good old day but due to all the health and safty bragade they aint never coming back :(
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