More confusion with life bans as streaker pays the price

Last updated : 28 March 2002 By Tony Scholes

Just over two weeks ago we contacted the club to clarify under what circumstances someone would receive a life ban preventing him or her from attending Burnley games at the Turf. It was all prompted by the fact that the club's Chief Executive Andrew Watson issued the threat of life bans after problems in Manchester's Victoria railway station.

We did get a reply from Mr. Watson and were informed that life bans were for football offences both at home and away as outlined by the policy. The policy however suggests that bans will only apply to football related offences involving violence or damage.

But hang on, we take a look at the club's official web site and it quite clearly says there, "At the present time our ‘banning policy' does not cover incidents/arrests at away grounds therefore we are not in a position to progress this issue without a change of club policy."

In other words the club clearly can't give an answer which makes you wonder just whether they really have a workable policy at all and certainly has you asking why they constantly give out conflicting evidence.

Racist chanting at Bradford still comes under the "No cover for incidents/arrests at away grounds" banner but yesterday the club made it known that those found guilty of pitch encroachment at the recent Preston game would receive life bans. This includes the streaker but didn't the same Burnley Football Club make a meal of it in turning Bertie Bee into a star with stories and pictures on the official web site? I can only assume also that the pitch encroachment offence does not apply to bees.

We also asked why supporters were publicly condemned by chairman, manager and captain for booing yet there has not been a single word said about those throwing missiles from the lower tier of the Harry Potts Longside. We received no answer to that question.

In his reply Andrew Watson ended by saying, "It is a shame that we have to waste any time talking about it when supporters simply need to attend, have a good time, and go home, as 99.9% do." Couldn't agree more Andrew but unfortunately that is not the case and the answers from the club are unclear and contradictory.