This book by Peter Caton examines the arguments for safe standing areas in football grounds
For a hundred years most supporters watched football from terraces, a culture that was an integral part of the game. By the 1980s though, neglected stadia, hooliganism and a lack of concern for safety meant that football had to change, and after 96 Liverpool fans tragically died at Hillsborough, Lord Taylor’s report recommended that our grounds should be all-seated. Many people however believe that something of the soul has been taken away from watching football and that standing is the natural way to feel part of the game.
In Stand Up Sit Down Peter Caton considers the arguments for and against the choice to stand to watch football. He visits the 23 English grounds that still have terraces, seeking the views of clubs and supporters, travels to Yorkshire to watch rugby league and to Germany to stand on a convertible terrace. With extensively researched background, the author analyses the disasters and hooliganism that led to all-seating, and the many changes that have occurred in the game. He considers various solutions proposed to allow standing, and highlights obstacles facing those backing the choice to stand. His own experiences of watching football at all levels add insight and interest. The book ends by asking its own questions and with a whiff of conspiracy.
Illustrated with colour photographs, Stand Up Sit Down unearths some surprising facts and raises many controversial issues relevant to all who love football.
Stand Up Sit Down, which runs to 325 pages, costs £9.99. It is published by Matador (Troubador).