Security expert calls for ban on bags at football grounds

Security expert calls for ban on bags at football grounds Credit: PA

Football clubs should ban bags at grounds, according to a former national counter-terrorism adviser.

Newcastle United are already asking fans to try and avoid taking bags to matches, a move welcomed by one of the club's fans' groups.

St James' Park Credit: PA

But Lee Dodderidge believes the heightened terror threat means clubs should bar the vast majority of fans from carrying bags to matches to minimise the need for searches and reduce the security threat.

Dodderidge, who also advised on security at the London 2012 Olympics said:

Newcastle issued advice to fans attending games, including reinforcing the club policy to search all bags at entry points to the ground and asking fans to minimise what they carry to matches.

Steve Storey, head of safety and security at Newcastle, said:

Steve Hastie, of the supporters' group NUFC Fans United, said on 5 Live:

Premier League and EFL clubs were advised on ground safety, including bag searches, during summer security briefings at Wembley and Old Trafford.

Karen Eyre-White, the chief executive of the Sports Grounds Safety Authority, attended the briefings and believes clubs should decide on an individual basis if they want to impose a ban on taking bags to grounds, ruling out a blanket-ban for all clubs.