Safety at Sports Grounds Guidance in Northern Ireland

Consultation opened on 21 December 2017. Closing date 14 February 2018.


In 2007 the Department, (the precursor to the Department for Communities being the Department of Culture, Arts and Leisure), provided a substantial technical guide ‘The Northern Ireland Guide to Safety at Sports Grounds’ (275 pages) to assist stakeholders in NI to comply with the Safety of Sports Grounds (Northern Ireland) Order 2006. The guide, at that time, also provided assistance to stakeholders on meeting the requirements of the new sports grounds safety certification scheme. This NI guide was based on the 4th edition of the SGSA ‘Guide to Safety at Sports Grounds’ and was produced by Sport NI’s Sports Grounds Safety Advisory Unit (SGSAU) on behalf of the Department.


Consultation description

The SGSA guide was refreshed in 2008, providing additional advice on risk management, counter terrorism and training of stewards, producing version 5.  The NI guide has not been updated to include this revised guidance. 

The SGSA is currently undertaking a major exercise to rewrite their guidance which will result in version 6. This extensive rewrite will consolidate their position on significant and important guidance on safety at sports grounds. The new guide will recognise and build upon the need to assess risk and develop levels of safety which are proportionate to the risk and the achievement of reasonable levels of safety for each ground.  As part of the rewrite the SGSA held an initial consultation event, on the wider definition of safety, in the Public Record Office NI earlier this year in June.  Further consultation is due to take place early in 2018 with the new guide expected to be issued later in the year. 

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