Hartlepool United hail success of safety and security efforts as number of football banning orders falls

Victoria Park
Victoria Park
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The number of Hartlepool United fans slapped with banning orders has almost halved in the last year, according to new official figures.

The Home Office published the latest statistics for football-related arrests and banning orders in place in England and Wales for the 2016 to 2017 season.

They show that as of August 7 this year, 13 Hartlepool United supporters were subject to the orders as a result of causing trouble, which prevents them going to games or being near the ground on match days.

That is down from 25 orders in place last year.

A Hartlepool United spokesman said: “We are committed to ensuring that Victoria Park is a safe and enjoyable place for all supporters to come and watch football.

“We work closely with the local authorities to ensure that any misconduct from supporters is dealt with quickly and efficiently so we’re pleased that this approach is having a positive effect.”

Newcastle United fans have topped the national list of banning orders for the third consecutive year.

On August 7, the club – on its return to the Premier League – had 111 banning orders against supporters, a slight decrease from 124 last year, and 132 in the 2014/15 season.

On the same date, Sunderland had 23 banning orders – a drop from 37 last year, and 39 in 2014/15, and putting them well down the table.

Middlesbrough had 33 as of August 7 this year, up from 26 last year and 29 in 2014/15.

Nationally, there has been a sixth consecutive drop in the number of overall banning orders,to 1,929 in 2016/17.

Top-place Newcastle were followed by Championship club Wolverhampton Wanderers with 75.

Championship club Birmingham City had the highest number of fans arrested last season at 72, followed by Premier League outfit West Ham United with 67.

All divisions saw a decrease in the number of football-related arrests.

The most common cause for arrest was public disorder, which accounted for 31% of recorded incidents, followed by violent disorder (21%) and alcohol offences (16%).

There was a drop in public disorder incidents from 583 in 2015/16 to 505 last year, and violent disorder (369 to 337), but increases in missile throwing (59 to 91) and pitch incursion (188 to 204).

Arrests for racist chanting fell for the third consecutive year, from 17 in 2015/16 to seven last year.