Stevenage MP pushes for non-league football fans to return to grounds

A petition to let non-league fans back in stadiums has reached more than 10,000 signatures. Picture:

A petition to let non-league fans back in stadiums has reached more than 10,000 signatures. Picture: Archant - Credit: Archant

Stevenage MP Stephen McPartland said he is “proud” to be one of 30 MPs who have signed a letter urging the government to let non-league football supporters back in stadiums.

The Stevenage MP said that these “small but loyal fan bases are at the heart of our community” and has thrown his support behind the #LetFansIn campaign – which has been gaining significant momentum in recent days.

More than 30 MPs have written to sports minister Nigel Huddleston calling for fans to be allowed to attend non-league football matches, since crowds tend to be “in the hundreds rather than the thousands.”

The letter reads: “Given we are now allowing indoor activities to resume in a Covid-safe way, we simply do not understand why non-league football clubs in outdoor stadia cannot allow their small but loyal fans back in through the gates.

“Our non-league football structure across England is football at its purist, but unlike league football, it cannot rely on broadcast or sponsorship income streams.”

An FA spokesperson said: “We continue to follow government advice with regards to the return of spectators and are working continuously with the Sports Ground Safety Authority, DCMS and Leagues to seek approval for a safe return as soon as feasibly possible.”

An online petition created by Sean Robinson has received more than 10,000 signatures.