The vast majority of football fans who use the
railways do so without causing any problems. We target
the small minority who exhibit anti social or criminal behaviour,
so everyone can have a safe and pleasant journey.
While the number of football fans using the transport network to
travel to matches is increasing, the number of serious football
related incidents continues to fall.
But the unpleasant reality faced by the public and rail staff
paints a somewhat different picture.
Socially, there appears to be a perception that football-related
antisocial behaviour is low-level, acceptable and should just be
tolerated. We believe it is not acceptable and should not be
tolerated. See a selection of our
recent successes in bringing offenders to justice.
Planning is key
We adopt a proactive approach to football policing, with
officers escorting trains before and after matches and patrolling
stations where large numbers of fans are expected. At some
stations, this can mean supporters from different, and even rival,
teams using a station at the same time, potentially creating a
flashpoint. Our strong relationships with the Football Association,
football clubs, and local police forces enable us to avoid some
problems and respond quickly to defuse and stop others.
We want football fans to travel in safety alongside other
passengers, and we have a range of measures in place to make sure
this happens. Our officers are in constant contact with each other,
monitoring the behaviour of fans and the routes they are taking, so
we are prepared for every eventuality. We minimise disruption to
the wider network by advising rail operators and football clubs to
provide special train services to accommodate large numbers of
fans. As alcohol is often a catalyst for the trouble, it is
restricted on some train services.
We ban known offenders from travelling by rail when
matches are being played and, where our officers can’t make an
arrest at the time of a violent incident, we conduct follow-up
operations, collecting evidence from witnesses and video footage to
identify and proceed against people involved in
Football policing - We target the small minority who exhibit anti
social or criminal behaviour, so everyone can have a safe and