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Premier clubs face legal action over wheelchair spaces

Old Trafford
Old Trafford Image credit: worldsoccer.com

Two premier football clubs are facing legal action after not providing enough wheelchair spaces at their stadiums.

The 2015 Accessible Stadia Guide states there should be 282 spaces for Man U supporters and 108 for Chelsea fans but both clubs have failed to meet the regulations.

Old Trafford only offers 120 wheelchair spots and there are 214 available at Stamford Bridge.

Chelsea have promised they will have enough spaces when they move ground, but this may not be until 2022.

Manchester United have said similar when their building work is done, although construction isn’t scheduled to finish until 2020.

Paralympian Lord Holmes said: “People who believed in the clarity of the pledge in 2015 will feel they have been kicked in the teeth.

“They made a clear and unequivocal commitment and this is a miserable result.

“The Premier League shows what we can do at our best in sport and it is an extraordinary stain running through it that we are only about 50 per cent there in terms of basic accessibility.

“It is about attitude, values, culture and approach.”

Rebecca Hilsenrath from the Equality and Human Rights Commission told The Telegraph: “This has delayed our final report as we review the new evidence and which of our enforcement powers we should use.”

“It is clear a significant number of clubs have failed to meet the Premier League’s own pledge deadline. While some have made progress and taken the bit between their teeth, others have shown a worrying lack of interest in taking this seriously, neglecting the needs of their disabled supporters.”

Architects have estimated the wheelchair spaces will cost £7.2 million to install.