Huddersfield travel row: Hull City fans' legal action 'will start soon'
LEGAL action will be taken against West Yorkshire Police if travel restrictions remain in place for Hull City fans wanting to go to the match at Huddersfield next month.
Tigers fans have inundated the Football Supporters' Federation (FSF) with more than 150 emails, angry at West Yorkshire Police for restricting them to use official coaches from Hull to the Championship clash next month.
Some City fans, who live in Huddersfield, would have to travel to Hull to catch a coach to be taken back to the game.
The police have also restricted the number of tickets to 1,500 in an away stand with a capacity of 4,000.
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The West Yorkshire force says the restrictions are necessary to allow the match to be policed safely and effectively.
Amanda Jacks, director of case work for the FSF, said: "If the police don't back down, there will be legal action in the near future.
"We have a client entitled to legal aid and a solicitor who thinks on this occasion fans have a right.
"It is not a human rights challenge, but (about) whether the police action is proportionate.
"The legal action will start in the near future, should West Yorkshire Police not change its mind."
The match was originally scheduled to kick off at 12.30pm on March 30 but this has been changed to 5.30pm on the same day so it can be televised on Sky Sports.
Under the Sky TV contract, all clubs must host at least one live game a season.
Huddersfield Town were at risk of breaching that, which could lead to a points deduction, after West Yorkshire Police had already refused permission for Sky to screen the home games against Leeds United and Cardiff City.
Huddersfield Town chief executive Nigel Clibbens said the police originally told them they would not sanction the change in kick-off time due to their "risk assessment and the additional financial burden this would place on them".
Mr Clibbens said: "We informed West Yorkshire Police of the implications for us of being unable to stage the game at the requested kick-off time.
"We were pleased West Yorkshire Police showed a willingness to reconsider the position and work with us to find a solution to reduce the policing costs and risk associated with the game."
As part of the agreement the capacity for away fans has been restricted, it is the highest price category for match tickets, the travelling restrictions have been implemented, it is all-ticket for home and away fans and only home fans with ticket purchasing history can buy tickets.
Some City fans said they would boycott the match.
Mr Clibbens said: "Being faced with the unenviable prospect of not fulfilling the Sky TV contract and the huge potential implications for the club, we are just very relieved the game is to be staged.
"The real people who suffer are the normal everyday Hull fans who just want to support their team but have to abide by the restrictions.
"We are really grateful for the support of Hull City in helping us deal with the issue and agreeing to the conditions, which mean that West Yorkshire Police was willing to move from its original position to sanction the game."
The FSF is urging fans to email email@example.com and the responses will be passed on to West Yorkshire's police and crime commissioner, Mark Burns-Williamson.
Mr Burns-Williamson said: "This is an operational policing matter under the direction of the chief constable.
"I will be speaking to the temporary chief constable to see if any of the specific concerns raised by fans, Hull City and Hull MP Karl Turner can be accommodated without compromising the safety of people across Huddersfield and West Yorkshire."