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Sports ground safety certificate

How to apply for a sports ground safety certificate.

Published: 15 January 2021

Last updated: 15 January 2021

In Westminster, you need a safety certificate if you operate a sports ground that holds more than 10,000 spectators. See Safety of Sports Grounds Act 1975.

You can apply for:

  • a general safety certificate
  • a special safety certificate for specific occasions

Read more about safety certificates at GOV.UK

How to apply

Apply for a new sport ground safety certificate

You can also apply by post. To obtain a hard copy of the application, please email us at [email protected].

The Guide to safety at sports grounds has been published by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport:

Guide to safety at sports grounds PDF, 1.19 MB, 232 pages

Giving detailed guidance on calculating how many spectators can be safely accommodated within the viewing area of a sports ground, and advice on measures to improve safety of spectators at all sports grounds.

Whilst the guide has no statutory force, many of its recommendation will be given the force of law at individual grounds by their inclusion in the safety certificate.

Eligibility criteria

The premises or sports ground must be named as a designated sports ground by the Secretary of State.

To be eligible for a safety certificate, you must be likely to be in a position to enforce the terms and conditions of a certificate.

What happens next

Application process 

When we receive an application, we determine whether the applicant is in a position to prevent any breach of the terms and conditions of a certificate.

If an application is made to transfer a certificate, we must determine if the person to whom the certificate is being transferred would qualify for the issue of a certificate.

We then send copies of the application to the relevant authorities for consultation on any terms and conditions, amendments, replacements or transfers.

Tacit consent 

Tacit consent does not apply to this application. It is in the public interest that we process your application before it can be granted.

If you haven't heard from the local authority within a reasonable period, please email us at [email protected].

Tacit consent means that you'll be able to act as though your application is granted if you've not heard from us by the end of the 28-day target period. Tacit consent will only apply once a full application has been submitted and you've received an acknowledgment.

Making an appeal

If you are unhappy with the outcome of your application, you have the right to appeal the decision. 

View information on appeals and complaints

Further information

Trade Associations 

View the public register 

View the public register online 

You can also view a copy of the register at our offices during normal office hours. Please email us at [email protected] to make an appointment.