The campaign aims to bring together stadium stakeholders and the local community to make sure the John Smith's Stadium is fit for the 21st century.
18 months ago, the Huddersfield Town Supporters Association (HTSA) launched the Sustainable Stadium Campaign. The campaign aims to help raise awareness of pollution and climate issues and tackle both by making the John Smith's Stadium more environmentally friendly. It is backed by the Huddersfield Giants Supporters' Association (HGSA), as well as local politicians, faith groups, and community institutions. There's a full list of signatories at the bottom of the page.
What Are Our Aims?
Our aims are modest, but over a long period, we believe they'll have a positive impact, not just on the quality of the local environment, but on stadium running costs. They are:
1. Phase out single-use plastics in the stadium.
2. Improve the recycling capacity of the stadium (introduction of recycling bins on the concourses etc.).
3. Installation of water refill stations/and or access to free water.
4. Work with the caterers to redistribute food and other waste.
5. Improve and expand options for supporters to travel to and from the stadium in a more environmentally friendly way (cycle racks, etc.).
6. Introduce energy efficiency measures (on-site generation, etc.).
In 2019, Kirklees Metropolitan Council joined dozens of other local authorities by declaring a climate emergency. The main purpose of this declaration is to raise awareness of the impact that human activity has on the environment and support the public to take effective action.
In the same year, the Football Supporters Association’s (FSA) Annual General Meeting passed a motion which stated:
"The FSA notes that there is a real environmental emergency affecting our planet and that football clubs and their supporters could potentially make an important contribution to tackling that. The Association should support, develop and lead projects across football that look to improve the environmental impact of the game and work with supporters to raise awareness of environmental sustainability.”
HTSA believes this is a reasonable response to an ongoing crisis that, one way or another, affects us all. Perhaps more importantly, it's a crisis that compels us to work together to find practical solutions.
How's It Going?
One of the first things we did was get rid of physical membership cards to cut down on our own waste. We then reached out to other community groups to find out what they've been doing and how we could learn from their experiences. After that, we published our aims and invited the football club, rugby club, council, and stadium operator, KSDL, to a meeting with HTSA and HGSA to figure out how we could all start to make a positive difference. Encouragingly, they accepted our offer. Unfortunately, just as we'd started to make some progress, the pandemic pushed the subject down the agenda. We're hoping to restart the meetings (online, of course) as soon as possible.
There have been some other quiet successes, too, both on catering and the club shop, but we'll tell you about them another time. You should also keep your eyes peeled for a special announcement in the coming days.
How Can You Help?
You can help in two main ways.
First, by sharing our articles and social media posts. And if you feel strongly, let the club know that you support the campaign and are glad they do, too.
Second, if you want to become more actively involved, email contact[at]htsa-web.com, and we'll invite you to participate in our Sustainable Stadium Campaign Working Group.
The HTSA Sustainable Stadium Campaign is backed by:
Huddersfield Town Supporters Association, Fans For Foodbanks.
Huddersfield Hindu Temple, Carlile Institute, The Welcome Centre, Destitute Asylum Seekers Huddersfield, Red and Green Club, Friends of the Earth (Huddersfield), Kirklees Climate Emergency, Kirklees Solidarity Economy Network.
Cllr Shabir Pandor (Leader of Kirklees Council), Cllr Richard Murgatoryd, Cllr Paul Davies, Cllr Scott Patient, Cllr Rob Walker, Cllr Viv Kendrick, Cllr Will Simpson, Cllr Andrew Cooper, Cllr Graham Taylor, Cllr Musarrat Khan, Cllr Neil Griffiths, Cllr Manisha Kaushik, Cllr Harpreet Uppal, Cllr Erin Hill, Cllr James Homewood, Thelma Walker, Paula Sherriff.
Email contact contact[at]htsa-web.com if you want to add a group to the list.