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Over 1400 disabled fans have their say in Level Playing Field’s largest survey to-date

Level Playing Field’s annual fan survey report reveals the most in-depth results in the charity’s 22-year history.

In its inaugural year the focus of the Level Playing Field Annual Survey is to receive greater feedback year on year, helping to drive change towards better access and inclusion for disabled sports fans.

Download the Level Playing Field annual fan survey report

Level Playing Field has carried out a number of specific surveys in the past, but this is the most comprehensive survey ever, reviewing the matchday experience of disabled fans.

The survey is a first of its kind, with a strong focus on club-specific feedback that will help clubs target specific areas to improve their facilities and services.

Thanks to support from clubs, leagues and partners who helped to publicise the survey, Level Playing Field received a total of 1408 responses.

Key findings include:

  • 30% of respondents stated that there were sports or sporting venues that they felt unable to attend due to poor access for disabled supporters
  • 25% of respondents said that ‘anxiety or lack of confidence’ was a barrier when attending live sport
  • Following lengthy restrictions on attending live sport due to the pandemic, 73% of the supporters surveyed said they would want to attend a match ‘right away’ once permitted
  • The top 3 covid measures that fans wanted in place when returning were: hand sanitising stations, hand washing facilities, and mask wearing (bar exemptions)

Level Playing Field Chair Tony Taylor said: “This first Level Playing Field annual fan survey provides a great insight into the experiences of disabled supporters as they attend live sport.

“We are grateful to the 1408 fans who took the time to share their experiences with us. It is our hope and expectation that their responses will serve to bring about improvements to services and facilities as clubs see their feedback and comments.

“With 73% of disabled fans eager to return to live sport ‘right away’ following various restrictions on attending, clubs need to ensure that they are ready, and this report can help with that preparation.

“There is clearly much that still needs to be done to ensure that disabled fans have an equal matchday experience to non-disabled fans. The fact that 30% of respondents said there was a sport or sports venue they felt unable to attend, due to poor access, highlights this inequality. Level Playing Field will continue to promote full access and inclusion for disabled fans and we expect that will be reflected in the results of our future fan surveys.”

Download the Level Playing Field annual fan survey report

Linked articles:

Disabled access: Third of disabled sports fans feel unable to attend live events – BBC

More than half of Premier League clubs including Chelsea and Newcastle accused of mistreating fans over Covid – The Telegraph

The apprehension and frustration for disabled football fans returning to stadiums this season – Mirror

Disabled fans keen to return to venues but many want Covid measures in place – Independant

Disabled sport fans are missing out – Able 2 UK

Disabled fans continue to face barriers to watching live sport, survey shows – Disability News Service

Charity boss discusses disabled football fans’ coronavirus concerns – One News Page