London’s Tory Mayoral candidate Shaun Bailey demands stadiums open to fans for Christmas


LONDON’S Tory mayoral candidate Shaun Bailey is demanding stadiums open to fans for Christmas.

Mr Bailey is writing to culture secretary Oliver Dowden to follow the German model and get supporters back on the sidelines.

Shaun Bailey is demanding stadiums be allowed to reopen

He’s also urging London Mayor Sadiq Khan to ensure transport networks are ready to safely shuffle supporters in and out of stadia.

In a letter to Mr Khan he said it’s their “responsibility” to take action to help the stricken sports industry.

He said: “This industry is worth billions to our country, providing jobs, entertainment and much-needed tax revenues. But right now it’s on the verge of collapse.”

The government is working on plans to allow a limited number of people back into sports stadiums – after it was pushed back following the recent covid spike.

Mr Bailey wrote: “I’ll write to the Culture Secretary and ask him to reopen London’s sports stadiums before Christmas.

“That way, we’ll help the sports industry earn revenue, help our economy start to recover, and help people enjoy normal activities.”

He added: “I am fully confident that we can help fans travel to and from games without any threat to public health. In Germany, Bundesliga clubs are now allowed to host crowds at 20% capacity.

“In France and Italy, stadiums can host up to 1,000 fans. London is falling behind — and for no reason.

“Furthermore, I assume that you’ve already worked up a plan with TfL on how to make our transport safe for when it gets busier again.”

Yesterday, Arsenal legend Ian Wright joined the call to open stadiums to fans.

He said: “How can it be safer indoors than it would be outdoors at a football ground when there’s loads of distance between people.

“It’s obvious that football fans are being treated differently to theatre-goers or ballet-lovers. And that’s got to change.

“How many more clubs and small businesses in our local communities have to go under before they are even given a chance to show that they can put in place the necessary protocols and get fans in safely?

“We are running out of time.”