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Dublin: 9 °C Saturday 11 July, 2020
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London GAA's Ruislip stand closed for Sligo game due to 'safety' reasons

The Exiles are hopeful the McGovern Stand will be re-opened in time for Sunday’s hurling tie against Derry.

The stand at McGovern Park at Ruislip in London.
The stand at McGovern Park at Ruislip in London.
Image: London GAA

LONDON GAA ARE hopeful the McGovern Stand in Ruislip will be re-opened in time for Sunday’s Allianz Hurling League Division 2B clash between the Exiles and Derry. 

The stand was closed at last Sunday’s Division 4 football tie between London and Sligo, with supporters forced to watch the game over pitchside barriers.

In a statement released to The42, London GAA said they failed to meet Hillingdon Borough Council’s safety requirements and therefore supporters were not permitted to sit in the stand. 

McGovern Park, which is based in west London’s Ruislip, was opened in 2017 and cost £4.3m to build.

£930,000 was raised by the London GAA and the rest came from grant aid and a loan from Croke Park.

Image from iOS (1) A view of supporters watching the London-Sligo game last Sunday.

“London GAA are working with our partners London Borough of Hillingdon’s regulatory services team to ensure that the management responsibility and planning for safety is complete to the required levels for 2020,” the statement read.

“This applies whether you have 250 or 6,000 spectators. London GAA have completed many of the requirements and will work with the regulatory services team to complete all elements in the interests of our spectators.

“It was unfortunate despite our best endeavours that all aspects were not complete for the Sligo game and we commend the positive reactions we received from all our spectators.

“It does point out to us the standards we now expect of ourselves and how far we have come with our facilities in that only a few years ago our pitch would have been unplayable, and spectators would be standing on the bank.

Image from iOS Fans watch London take on Sligo in McGovern Park.

“The amount of volunteer hours it takes to not only keep McGovern Park to standard but the operation of London GAA must be appreciated by all.

“Our combined efforts will work towards compliance for London v Derry next Sunday and we appreciate the volunteer hours that will be invested.”

The London board did not go into more detail on which safety requirements they failed to meet. The sizeable crowd in attendance were charged £10 for tickets.

Sligo ran out comfortable 5-9 to 0-11 winners over Michael Maher’s side in their football league opener. 

London hurlers take on Derry in Ruislip at 2pm on Sunday.

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About the author:

Kevin O'Brien

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