Bra search lands English club in hot water
English League Two club Stevenage have been accused of a ‘gross invasion of privacy’ by a Grimsby Town supporters group after some female fans were asked to show their bras to stewards on Saturday.
Paul Savage, a board member of the Mariners Trust, told the BBC he had been among 800 supporters waiting to be admitted to Stevenage’s Broadhall Way for the fourth-tier match.
Savage said the women – who were aged from ‘mid-30s to 70-year-olds’ – refused to lift their tops so the stewards could inspect their bras.
The stewards – who were all women – also asked if they could feel their bras if the female fans said that they were underwired.
“They were all shocked and because of the nature of the request, they were stunned and until they got into the ground, they didn’t know what to do and say,” Savage told the BBC.
“It was only later on when we got word about what had happened that we tried to take it further.”
As a result of the behaviour of the stewards the Mariners Trust has sent Stevenage a letter demanding the club address the “serious failings” as a “matter of urgency… To ensure no other visiting team’s supporters are treated as animals in the way your club did on Saturday”.
According to the letter sent by the Mariners Trust, fans as young as five were given full body searches.
The local police force said their officers did not take part in these searches.
However, they added they had been asked to attend “due to intelligence regarding a previous game between Chesterfield and Grimsby Town, where there was public disorder and members of the public were injured”.
The English Football League (EFL) is investigating the matter, as are Stevenage.
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