Northampton Saints has announced that there will be increased security measures at Friday’s European Rugby Champions Cup qualification play-off against Stade Francais.
The announcement follows the increased terror threat level following Monday’s incident in Manchester.
Northampton Saints puts the safety and security of supporters at the heart of its match day operations, and while everyone coming to Franklin’s Gardens on Friday night is encouraged to enjoy the occasion – as they would do for every home match day – the club is advising that supporters be prepared for potential queues at the turnstiles and to therefore allow additional time to enter the stadium.
The following heightened measures will be in operation, in addition to the club’s usual match day protocols:
BAG SEARCHES Every bag will be searched at the turnstiles
OPEN JACKET POLICY Supporters wearing jackets will be required to unzip them before entry will be granted
ADDITIONAL PATROLS Safety team and security personnel will be patrolling the exterior of the stadium throughout the match. Furthermore, stewards will manage the entrances into the car parks throughout the game, and there will be enhanced stewarding at all exit points
The Saints’ management is also liaising regularly with Northamptonshire Police throughout the week.
The official club car parks on Edgar Mobbs Way will open at 4:30pm, with the Village turnstiles at Gates 2 and 3 (Elite Insurance Stand end of the stadium) opening at 5pm.
Match tickets can be collected throughout the day from the Saints Shop from 9am, which is also open until 5pm on Wednesday and 7pm on Thursday for advance collections.
There will also be a minute’s silence before kick off to remember those who sadly lost their lives at the Manchester Arena on Monday night, so supporters are urged to be in their seats or terrace spaces no later than 7:40pm.
The Northampton Saints management thanks supporters in advance for their understanding in this matter and for cooperating with the club’s safety team and staff on Friday.