17th December 2015
Against the backdrop of heightened security at football grounds across Europe following the Paris attacks in November, a Cornish club is waging a war of its own against a surge in antisocial behaviour. Bodmin Town FC in Cornwall, who have seen a huge increase in instances of intrusion and vandalism on their land in recent months, are planning to increase security by erecting a large perimeter fence around their ground.
Security at Bodmin Town FC, who play in the South West Peninsula League Premier Division, has been a longstanding issue, with vandals and antisocial groups finding easy access on to the pitches at night. Empty cans and bottles, broken glass and drug paraphernalia are regularly discovered by ground staff when they arrive on site in the morning and recently a used syringe was found when a club steward was emptying a bin on the site. In addition, the pitches at Priory Park are regularly fouled upon by dogs and the club’s new snack hut has been vandalised, creating an unsafe and unhygienic environment for players and spectators alike. All this means that the perimeter security fencing really cannot arrive soon enough.
From a risk management point of view, a perimeter fence is the obvious solution to these recent antisocial issues. The Environment Agency had expressed concerns that such fencing could pose a flooding risk to local houses due to a nearby dam, however, the club’s planners have now planned all structures to be built well away from the water course in question. Funded in part by a £65,000 grant from the Football Stadia Improvement Fund, the 2.4 metre high mesh fencing can now be erected to properly secure the grounds and stop any hazardous items ending up on the pitch. The new perimeter fencing will also ensure that Bodmin Town’s grounds comply fully with Football League security rules around perimeter pitch protection, as well as allowing its grandstand and seating areas to remain free from vandalism.