Forced to stand at Ham­p­den

No view for dis­abled fans

Rutherglen Reformer - - News - Dou­glas Dickie

A dis­abled Scot­land fan from Cam­bus­lang was forced to stand to watch the na­tional side’s game with Ger­many at Ham­p­den last week.

Scott Laid­law, who uses a wheel­chair, was left stunned when he ar­rived at the na­tional sta­dium to find his view of the pitch al­most com­pletely blocked by advertising boards.

He and fel­low dis­abled fans could see only the play­ers’ heads, and noth­ing of the pitch dur­ing Scot­land’s 3- 2 de­feat to the world cham­pi­ons.

Twenty- three- year- old Scott, who suf­fers from cere­bral palsy, was able to come out his chair for the du­ra­tion of the match, but he ad­mits it ru­ined his en­joy­ment of the game.

He said: “Ba­si­cally, when we ar­rived at the game, we found our seats and re­alised we couldn’t see the game.

“I’ve been be­fore to Scot­land games and this is the first time it has ever hap­pened.

“I men­tioned it to a stew­ard who went to his su­per­vi­sor and it turned out it was not just me com­plain­ing, there were quite a few of us.

“I ac­tu­ally had to come out my chair. I am able to do that, but I’d rather it was through my own choice than be­ing forced into it.

“Even when I was out the chair, it was just a wee bit bet­ter, but not much.

“It af­fected my en­joy­ment of the game in the sense I’d much rather have been sit­ting than stand­ing.”

Scott, who stays in East­field, works for the Boys’ Brigade and also vol­un­teers at Cam­glen Ra­dio. He was se­lected to carry the Queen’s Ba­ton in the run up to last year’s Com­mon­wealth Games.

The Ger­many game was his third of the qual­i­fy­ing cam­paign, with him pay­ing £15 for a ticket.

He in­sists the ex­pe­ri­ence won’t put him off go­ing to watch his coun­try but he warned the SFA they must sort out the is­sues be­fore the next game against Poland.

“I have put in for the Poland game for the same seats and I am hop­ing that they have lis­tened to the fans.

“It will not stop me, I have al­ready bought my tick­ets even be­fore this hap­pened and I’ll be go­ing back.”

A spokesper­son for the SFA said: “The Scot­tish FA apol­o­gises un­re­servedly to those sup­port e r s ac­com­mo­dated in the South Stand ac­ces­si­ble ar­eas whose view was se­ri­ously re­stricted by the dou­ble tele­vi­sion pro­duc­tion.

“We will of­fer a full re­fund to those sup­port­ers af­fected and will re­view mat­ters ahead of the Euro­pean Qual­i­fier against Poland next month.”

Dis­ap­pointed Scott Laid­law ar­rived at Ham­p­den to find his view se­verely re­stricted

View The view from Scott’s seat last Mon­day

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