Time to consider bringing alcohol back at football matches

7 Sep 2013

The Scottish Conservatives are to write to every senior football club in Scotland seeking their views on selling alcohol at matches.

The party believes it is time to review the policy banning drink from grounds on match-day, and wants the views of all 42 teams about the possibility of it being overturned.

Alcohol can be consumed in England before matches and at half-time inside football stadia, as well as at other sporting events in Scotland.

Drink was banned at football games after rioting during the Scottish Cup final in 1980, but the Scottish Conservatives believe it is now time to look again at the restrictions.

As it stands, alcohol can be consumed in corporate hospitality areas at football grounds, although not during the game itself.

But the privilege is not extended to the vast majority of supporters.

The Scottish Conservatives believe these rules may be out of date and want to canvas clubs to find out their stance.

Scottish Conservative leader Ruth Davidson MSP said:

“I understand why the ban was brought in all those years ago, but times have changed significantly since then.

“We now have modern stadia with excellent stewarding to keep spectators safer, allowing more families to attend matches.

“This has resulted in the football watching experience being a far more civilised experience than it was 30 years ago.

“With that in mind, it’s time to consider allowing supporters to enjoy an alcoholic drink before the game and at half-time.

“There’s no reason why this should be successfully in place in England but not north of the border.

“It seems unfair that people who can have a drink in a bar, rugby ground or even at a concert in football stadiums are unable to consume alcohol before they sit down to watch a game of football.

“Such a change would have the potential for our cash-strapped clubs to bring in some extra income, while boosting the match-day experience for thousands of fans every week.”