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Ospreys Fans Safety Lesson To Be Caught On

By - | 24/04/2007

Supporters attending the Ospreys fixture against Leinster at the Liberty Stadium on Friday evening are being asked to assist stadium bosses carry out a dummy evacuation of the ground after the game - and get the chance to star in a new TV advert.

Supporters attending the Ospreys Magners League fixture against Leinster at the Liberty Stadium on Friday evening are being asked to assist stadium bosses carry out a dummy evacuation of the ground after the game - and get the chance to star in a new television advert at the same time.

Under the terms of its safety licence, management at the £27million venue are obliged to carry out an annual evacuation exercise to ensure that correct procedures are followed at all times, helping to ensure the continued safety of all spectators attending events that take place at the Liberty Stadium.

Once the final whistle blows on Friday evening, spectators watching the game from the East Stand are being asked to remain in their seats and follow the directions given over the PA system. Supporters using the Riverside Lounge may be asked to leave, but will be allowed to return as soon as the exercise is over. It is anticipated that supporters in the East Stand will face a delay of no more than 20 minutes dues to the procedures, during which time, they are being asked to take part in the filming of an advert for the Welsh Blood Service.

Ospreys Managing Director Roger Blyth explained:

"As part of their annual safety checks, Liberty Stadium management are expected to carry out a full review of evacuation procedures and we have been asked to assist with this at Friday evening's match. It will only affect supporters watching the game from the East Stand, and will take no longer than 20 minutes, so we would appreciate the patience and understanding of supporters during this period, as this will obviously help to ensure that the drill goes smoothly. This is a vital procedure that has to be undertaken every year in order for a safety licence to be granted, and we appreciate that it may cause some inconvenience, but I'm sure that everyone who attends Liberty Stadium will appreciate how important it is.

"We have also received a request from the Welsh Blood Service to help with the filming of their new television advert, which will feature a number of our players alongside Welsh celebrities, and we are delighted to offer our assistance. The Welsh Blood Service does a fantastic job and their work will have touched the lives of most of us in one way or another. We felt that given that the evacuation drill would be taking place after Friday's game anyway, we could kill two birds with one stone and allow them to get the finishing scene of their advert at the same time.

"Whilst the filming will not take up anymore time than would be necessary via the controlled evacuation, we do appreciate that some supporters might not wish to participate in the filming. If that is the case, we are asking these fans to make themselves known to the stewards at the final whistle so they can be moved to an area away from the camera to await further instructions for the evacuation."

The Welsh Blood Service will be at the stadium filming its new commercial throughout Friday, with Ospreys stars Gavin Henson, Shane Williams, James Hook and Adam Jones taking part ahead of the match. They will be joined at the Liberty Stadium by a number of Welsh celebrities including Simon Weston OBE, S4C presenters Angharad Mair and Lowri Morgan, Angela J from Real Radio's Breakfast Show and Big Brother's Imogen Thomas.

Whilst fans in the East Stand are awaiting instructions from safety stewards, they will be asked to assist in the making of the advert by raising a banner from the bottom of the stand to the top, which will open up into the shape of a human heart, the symbol of the Welsh Blood Service. The finished advert will be broadcast throughout Wales later this year, with the aim of encouraging more youngsters, and in particular young males, to donate blood.

Trudi Evans, Recruitment Manager, Welsh Blood Service, commented:

"I would like to thank management at Liberty Stadium, the Ospreys and of course, their supporters for their co-operation and support. It is always a struggle to recruit new donors, so we hope that this new advert, and the experience of being involved in the making of it, will inspire many more new donors to come forward."

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