There have been many major fatal disasters at various sports grounds throughout the country, such as the fatal crushing at Bolton Wanderers Football Ground in 1946, a similar disaster at Ibrox Stadium in Glasgow, the infamous fire at the Bradford Stadium and in recent times the disaster at Hillsborough when 96 Liverpool supporters died. These disasters obviously required a system of control that would prevent similar happenings in the future.
Legislation requires that any sports ground with a capacity of more than 10,000 spectators is to be certified by the local authority. This certificate is only issued after stringent inspections by the council's Building Control Officers to ensure that the ground is safe in accordance with criteria laid down by the government. There is also an input by the police, fire and ambulance services who each would have a major role in the event of any incident occurring.
To obtain a certificate, application has to be made to the local authority who, not only initiates the procedure above but also will advertise the application to invite any objections or comments from residents or potential spectators.
The only Ground Safety Certificate issued by Salford City Council is in effect for the AJ Bell Stadium. The ground is inspected annually to ensure that the relevant factors are maintained.