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Monday, 22 September 2014

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Strokes, chest pains and wasp stings: Fans suffer at Carlisle Utd's Brunton Park

A trip to watch Carlisle United led to a visit to casualty for seven unhappy fans last season.

The annual report on safety at sports grounds in Cumbria reveals there were 14 injuries and illnesses to spectators at Brunton Park, seven of which required hospital treatment.

The county council report says: “There have been 14 [incidents] during six home matches involving tripping, stroke, head injury, trapped nerve, chest pains, nose bleed, struggling to breathe and even wasp and bee stings.

“This resulted in seven spectators being removed to the Cumberland Infirmary by ambulance for further observation or treatment.”

The report says all the incidents were dealt with properly by the club.

Inspectors made two visits to assess stewards on match days and were complimentary, saying that deficiencies found on the first visit in October had been put right when they came back in February.

Councillors will consider the report next Tuesday.

They are being recommended to reissue Brunton Park’s general safety certificate with an unchanged maximum capacity of 18,249.

A lower maximum of 17,949 will apply if some seats in the Story Homes stand have to be left empty to segregate rival supporters.

The average attendance at Brunton Park last season was 5,210, down by 1,057 on 2008-9.

The highest league gate was 8,728 for the visit of Leeds United in April while the lowest was 3,731 against Yeovil Town a month earlier.

But the highest gate overall was the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy northern final second leg, also against Leeds, where 9,430 fans saw the Blues secure a Wembley appearance against Southampton.

The capacity at Workington Reds’ Borough Park is likely to remain at 3,101 – the average attendance was only 325.

Inspectors did have “concerns” about the management of the ground, however, and they say that future reductions in the capacity “cannot be ruled out”.

They praised Carlisle Racecourse where capacity of the Jubilee Stand is set to rise from 838 to 882.

At Derwent Park in Workington, capacity for rugby league will stay at 9,611 but when the stadium is used for speedway the maximum number of spectators will rise from 5,381 to 5,985.

And the capacity at Whitehaven RLFC’s Recreation Ground is set to rise from to 8,002 to 8,261.

Inspectors praised the competency of stewards and said that the ground is “in good condition with ongoing maintenance prevalent throughout the year”.

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