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Policing London football matches last season cost the Metropolitan Police £6.7m new figures reveal

London's football clubs paid just £361k of the total bill

Jack Watson
Tuesday 01 August 2017 17:38 BST
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London Stadium is the most expensive ground to police
London Stadium is the most expensive ground to police (Getty)

London’s football clubs paid less than five per cent of the £7m it took to police football matches in the capital last season, new figures have revealed.

The clubs paid just £361k of the cost because of legislation which means they are only expected to contribute to the cost of policing inside the stadium and on their land, resulting in the taxpayer picking up a hefty £6.7m bill.

Currently, professional football clubs currently have no legal obligation to cover costs for policing outside the ground or to manage transport.

The figures were obtained by Labour London Assembly Member Andrew Dismore, who has described the £6.7million bill as a “farce” and a “financial burden.”

The FA work closely with the Met on the funding of security for events at Wembley but it is the individual clubs that Dismore is unhappy with. “London taxpayers should not have to spend another penny on subsidising some of the richest organisations in the world,” he said.

Dismore is calling for clubs to do more to help with the cost. “I have been campaigning on this issue for a number of years now, and any hope I had of the clubs doing the right thing, and coughing up a tiny proportion of their millions to relieve London taxpayers of this financial burden, is long gone.

Scotland Yard recovered just 5% of the total cost (Getty)

“The Mayor and the Met are continuing to lobby government to change the law to stop this farce, but as of yet the Home Secretary has failed to take action” he added.

A spokesperson for the Home Office told The Independent that after a review in 2013 and 2015, there is no plan to make changes to the charging policy for football clubs.

“It was decided that we would not legislate to permit changes for wider policing,” the spokesperson said. “It is important that the charging policy is fair to the police, taxpayers, the organisations putting on sporting events and those spectators who pay to attend.”

The London Stadium was the most expensive ground to police (Getty)

West Ham’s London Stadium was the most expensive ground to police with over one million pounds of the Met’s budget being spent on the east-London club. West Ham contributed £33,000 or 3% of this cost. Chelsea incurred the second highest bill of £726,000 and contributed £150,000.

The Independent has contacted West Ham for comment.

The most expensive match to police did not involve a London club. Manchester United and Southampton’s game in the League Cup final at Wembley cost the Met over £150,000 to police with only a quarter of this being recovered.

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