Muscular Dystrophy UK calls for Changing Places toilets at all Premier League clubs

Published Date
Laura Burge
Changing Places toilets

Muscular Dystrophy UK is urging all Premier League clubs to install Changing Places toilets as the start of the 2019/20 season approaches.

Currently, five clubs – newly-promoted Sheffield United, Aston Villa and Norwich, and Bournemouth and Wolves – do not have a registered permanent facility. Chelsea, Crystal Palace and Burnley have confirmed they are in the process of registering their respective Changing Places toilets.

You can see which teams are performing well and who needs to improve in our Changing Places Premier League table.

What we are calling for

As co-chairs of the Changing Places Consortium, we would like to see at least one permanent Changing Places toilet at each Premier League ground by the start of the 2020/21 season.

We also know that other areas of access can be improved, which is why we’re calling for all clubs to ensure they have the minimum number of wheelchair spaces and publish up-to-date disability access statements.

Clare Lucas, Head of Policy and Campaigns at Muscular Dystrophy UK, said:

Football should be accessible to everyone, but too many disabled fans are put off going to matches because the facilities don’t meet their needs. Premier League clubs have a vital part to play in making the game more inclusive. We would encourage all those who haven’t done so already to lead by example by installing at least one Changing Places toilet.

No one should have to give up going to a football match because it is not accessible. Many sports grounds provide too little space for disabled fans, who often find themselves sitting apart from friends and family. We also know seating can often be exposed and views restricted.

What you can do

  • Share our Premier League Changing Places table
  • Tell us your matchday experiences – good or bad – here
  • Encourage your team to install Changing Places toilets and commit to improving the matchday experience for disabled football fans. You can find a club directory here.

Harry Bestwick, 14, has been an Arsenal season ticket holder for four years. He said:

I have been privileged to visit many different stadiums while following Arsenal. For a good overall matchday experience, stadiums must have accessible parking for disabled people, as well as good transport links. When inside the ground, accessible Changing Places toilets and adequate viewing for disabled people are essential.

For me, the Emirates is brilliant. It is easily accessible by train, which isn’t always the case with other stadiums, which I’ve always driven to. All stadiums must have accessible wheelchair areas to watch the game and unrestricted wheelchair viewing. The best part of my matchday experience is mixing with all the other fans and seeing games live.

 Owen Swift, 20, has been a season ticket holder for Championship and former Premier League side Middlesbrough for 11 years. He said:

Travelling to home and away games with Boro means I’ve visited a number of stadiums around the country. In my time travelling away to watch Middlesbrough, the best stadium I have visited would have to be Southampton’s St Mary’s Stadium. The worst ones have been Nottingham Forest and Leeds United.

For me to get the very best out of my matchday experience, a stadium must have a good disabled toilet, ideally a Changing Places, an unrestricted view with an accessible concourse, and parking near to, or in, the stadium’s car park. I drive to most games out of ease, but my experiences using the club coaches have never disappointed.

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