Board Meeting 2 - January 2012

Minutes of the second meeting of the Sports Grounds Safety Authority held on 10 January 2012 in Oceanic House.


Mr P Darling – Chairman
Mr B Batson
Ms J Summerell
Mr P Rowley
Mr D Wilson
Dr P Lane
Mr R Wilkie
Ms R Shaw   - Chief Executive

In attendance

Mr K D Sears
Mr M Smith
Ms L Al-Kazwini – for item 4 onwards

No apologies were received



Minutes of the previous meeting


The minutes were agreed and signed by the Chairman.


Matters arising


No items were raised.


Chief Executive’s Reports (SGSA(11)07) SGSA(12)


The Chief Executive summarised the two papers.















The Scottish Premier League Rule change to allow standing was discussed and the following points noted:

  • The SGSA need to have an understanding of the proposed pilot exercise. Enquiries as to involvement can be made through DCMS who have contact with the Scottish Executive.


  • The importance of robust evidence rather than anecdote and opinion was noted, as was the need to ensure the SGSA remained focused on spectator safety, while recognising the relationship with issues such as crowd comfort and public order.

The related issue of standing in seated areas was also discussed. Mr Sears informed the group that he is currently working with partners to review the Joint Statement on Standing in Seated Football Grounds (2002). This will be updated to include case studies and practical suggestions that have been effective in dealing with this problem.


The Chief Executive informed the Board that DCMS are considering future options for the SGSA which include a range of possible merger/transfer partners, the timing of any such transfer, which is currently scheduled for April 2013, and the possibility of reviewing the licence fee.

The Chief Executive suggested that a light-touch external review of the SGSA’s regulatory and non-regulatory functions, structure, resources and skills might help inform such decisions. Such a review by a ‘critical friend’ could also inform the evolution of the SGSA and highlight areas for future improvement. After discussion the Board agreed that the Executive should develop proposals for how and when such a review might be carried out.

Mr Wilson informed the Board that he had received requests for SGSA engagements with representatives from the architecture industry and that this may be a good way share information and to access other sports. There is no existing cross industry group for those involved in Sports Grounds. The Chief Executive agreed that further industry engagement would be an important part of the SGSA communication and engagement strategy, and that the Executive would work with UKTI to explore options.



Enquires to be made through DCMS on Scottish plans for standing areas, and nature of the ‘pilots’.

Executive to develop proposals for a light touch independent review of SGSA functions, structure and resources with a view to supporting and informing continued development.

Executive to develop proposals for industry engagement as part of the wider communications strategy.





Risk Register (SGSA(12)01)

The Chairman thanked and congratulated those involved in producing the Risk Register.

The Board approved the content of the register and welcomed the format. Any significant additions or changes to the risk register would be highlighted to the Board at future meetings.




Annual Business Plan (SGSA(11)02)










The Board approved the new format Business Plan which is now in line with the DCMS layout and were happy that the plan reflects SGSA priorities and should cover the period until October 2012, when more may be known about the future of the SGSA.

It was suggested that any independent review should be included n the Business Plan.  It was also suggested that the Business Plan should more fully reflect the role of the board in the resources under relevant goals and actions. The Chief Executive agreed to revise the Business Plan in order to incorporate the Boards expertise and input.

There was a brief discussion of Key Performance Indicators and performance measures, which would need to be included in the Business Plan and/or Funding Agreement. The Board charged the Executive with developing these.

Business Plan to be updated to include independent review and Board resource as appropriate.

The Executive to produce Performance Indicators and Key Performance Indicators to be included in the Business Plan and Funding Agreement.


Business Continuity (SGSA(12)03)


The Board noted the content of the paper and approved the updated Business Continuity Plan.


Board Engagement (SGSA(12)04)






















All agreed proposals for future Board meetings, and those who had been present agreed that the format of the November 2011 meeting at Wembley was successful and should be repeated.

The Board Engagement Strategy was discussed, as were the benefits and lessons learned from recent Board activity. There was some concern expressed over the lack of information or involvement in relation to other sports. The Chief Executive advised that the approach to other sports was still evolving and agreed to circulate further information, and to ensure that Board expertise and input could be fully utilised over the coming months.

The mechanism for monitoring the benefits and costs of Board members visits was discussed. It was agreed that the Executive would produce a simple template to assess visits including the benefit to the organisation and to the Board. This could include the criteria for the visit along with any background information required.


The Executive to circulate the sports allocation list, relevant information including draft engagement strategies, and the menu of services which had been developed.

Executive to produce monitoring template for Board members visits.


Any Other Business

The responses of the Audit and Risk Committee undertaken in November 2011 were circulated and summarised by Mr Rowley.

The Chairman thanked the Board for their input and noted the self assessment responses received. The lowest responses related to Training and Development which is being addressed along with the Board Engagement Strategy.

The Chairman confirmed that both the appraisal of the Board members and his own appraisal were now complete.

Mr Wilson informed the Board that the European Soccerex Conference would take place in Manchester on 28th March 2012 and that the SGSA may wish to consider attendance. Further enquires for attendance and the possible opportunity of speaking at this or future events would be made.




Date of the next meeting


The next meeting would be held on Tuesday 13th March 2012.

SGSA Secretariat - January 2012