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Brady hails new measures

Filed: Monday, 26th September 2016
By: Staff Writer

Vice chairman Karren Brady says that new security measures implemented ahead of yesterday's home defeat against Southampton were to be a resounding success.

Despite the team performing woefully on the pitch, Brady admitted that she was pleased with the improvement to security and stewarding that had led to a barrage of complaints from season ticket holders in recent weeks.

"New measures have been put in place over the first few months of the season, with London Stadium stakeholders working together to eradicate incidents like the ones seen in the match against Watford," she wrote in a statement published on the club's website.

"A visibly improved and effective segregation line was introduced ahead of the match against Accrington Stanley, and will now stay in place permanently moving forwards. Over 200 additional stewards were present, with increased levels of football experience employed through additional stewarding companies.

"Furthermore, a new initiative was put into practice, which will see stewards posted in regular areas for every game to help build familiarity between stadium staff and our fans. West Ham Unitedís relocation of season ticket holders to areas of more like-minded supporters was also evident, with zero complaints about issues relating to persistent standing.

"We listened to the feedback of our fans and identified areas that needed to be addressed, including the segregation of supporters and relocation of some of our fans, but we will not stop there and will continue to make more improvements every day."

However Brady's claims that "the game ... was completely free of incident" was contested by a number of supporters who experienced first-hand problems with some of the stadium's stewards.

Deano_Hammer explained how he was threatened with ejection from the ground - and accused the steward in question of unnecessarily inflaming the situation.

"Just before Southampton's first goal a steward demanded I sit down," he said. "Everyone in my block was standing so I told the steward in question that no-one seemed to be complaining and that I was not causing anyone any harm.

"He then threatened to eject me and requested my season ticket. At half time two stewards approached me and said 'you need to come with us, we want to have a quick chat'. I knew they wanted to throw me out, so I asked what grounds they had for doing so. They told me I had used 'threatening and abusive behaviour'.

"Not only did I miss the last 15 minutes of the first half, but the whole thing left me feeling deflated. In all the years I've been going to football I've never been in any trouble. Ever. Yet this could see me banned."

KUMB member Oldun, who has been a regular attendee at home match for nearly 50 years was disappointed to note the behaviour of the officials involved from an adjacent block.

"I think they are trying to provoke people," he said. "I watched the BML and there were loads of fans standing. One steward picked out a young bloke standing on the end of block who had no-one directly behind him - but the steward would not stop giving the bloke grief."

Meanwhile one supporter who sat in the disabled section was rather surprised to be scolded by a particularly officious steward during the pre-match rendition of the club's anthem.

"I was asked to stop waving my crutch in the air when singing Bubbles," reported KUMB member Doc H Ball.

"I've taken to using the late great George Melly trick of reciting Dadaist poetry to the stewards and they look at you like you're either mad of have some strong dialect they can't figure. Either way they leave you alone.

"I'm hoping to be the first wheelchair evictee. I'll not go quietly."

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