Championship Leeds United have won their High Court action over who should pay for policing of matches at their Elland Road stadium. The litigation involved policing by West Yorkshire police in the extended footprint of land around the stadium which is not owned or leased by the club - who claimed this fell within the scope of a constable's normal common law obligations to maintain public order.
Mr Justice Eady, in London, said those services could not be classified as special police services and the club should be repaid.
He concluded that the services rendered fell within the normal constabulary duty to keep the peace, saying: "More generally, it seems wrong to discount the majority of well-behaved fans who come to Elland Road, whether club supporters or visitors, all of whom retain their status as members of the public. In that capacity, they too are entitled to expect police protection.
"In any event, I consider that there would be insuperable difficulties in seeking to sub-divide people, in public highways and other spaces, when trying to assess to whose benefit such duties were carried out. They are intended to keep the Queen's peace in the interests of the general public."