Burnley FC's ongoing Turf Moor expansion revolutionises Jimmy McIlroy stand

Burnley FC have made a move to make Turf Moor even more welcoming to disabled supporters by installing a Changing Place, offering more provision than standard disabled-access toilet as part of an ongoing stadium expansion around the Jimmy McIlroy stand.

Monday, 22nd July 2019, 1:23 pm
Projects Director Bob Oliver (right) handing over a Changing Places football shirt to Burnley's Stadium and Operations Manager Doug Metcalfe.
Projects Director Bob Oliver (right) handing over a Changing Places football shirt to Burnley's Stadium and Operations Manager Doug Metcalfe.

With standard facilities not meeting the needs of the wider disabled community, the Changing Place - supplied and installed by Innova Care Concepts - offers more space, a good range of equipment, and a hoisting system.

The facility has been installed as part of the work to improve accessibility in the Jimmy McIlroy stand, which also includes raised platform areas giving wheelchair-users good coverage on rainy days and excellent visibility for all matches.

“At Burnley, our motto is very much ‘do the right thing’," said Doug Metcalfe, Stadium and Operations Manager at Burnley FC. "We’re not dragging our heels when it comes to making our stadium more accessible – we’re doing it because we genuinely want disabled supporters to have everything they could possibly need when they come to Turf Moor.

“Installing a Changing Place is just one step in making our stadium better-equipped for both home and away supporters," he added.

Going above and beyond to give supporters the best experience possible, the Burnley's new accessible stand features three levels of wheelchair seating with additional fixed seating for friends and family to sit together, while the club has also designed and installed a concourse exclusively for disabled supporters that will have television screens showing the game and a wheelchair-level food and drink kiosk.

Innova Care Concepts' Projects Director, Bob Oliver, said: “The progress that Burnley is making in the way of accessibility is very impressive; this level of thought and care should be embraced by football clubs all over the UK. It also just goes to show how important it is that Changing Places be installed not only in football stadiums – but in all kinds of public facilities.

"They’re an investment in your building and your customers’ quality of life," Bob added.

In the past, Premier League clubs have come under pressure from both the Changing Places campaign and the Equality and Human Rights Commission for failing to provide adequate facilities for disabled supporters but have since promised to abide by Accessible Stadia guidelines and regulations that detail the requirements for a Changing Place facility.