Ken Scott receives MBE

Ken Scott, Sports Grounds Safety Authority’s (SGSA’s) Head of Inspectorate has become a MBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List.

Ken is known around the world as an expert in sports grounds safety.  He provides support and advice to sports grounds on areas such as the physical infrastructure of stadia and safety management procedures.  Alongside the regulatory role of licensing football grounds in England and Wales, Ken has supported government and sporting bodies around the world including South America, Asia and Africa as well as across Europe.  Ken’s background is in local government, with a spell operating his own consultancy.  He joined the SGSA in 2013 before becoming Head of Inspectorate in 2016.

He is the lead author of the Guide to Safety at Sports Grounds (also known as the Green Guide) which sets the standards for safe sports grounds in the UK and internationally.  More recently he has authored the guidance on the return of fans to sports grounds following the COVID-19 pandemic.  He developed new approaches to enable fans to return safely.  This guidance is being used across the UK and around the world to plan for the return of fans.

Ken said: “I was shocked when I received the notification.  There was initial surprise and checking that the information was genuine.  This soon gave way to elation and excitement then to humility and gratitude before finally landing on pride.  My pride though is not just for me but is actually more for my family who have to put up with my intensity around my work but who have also been my biggest supporters and sources of encouragement for whatever work related trip or activity I was about to undertake.

“The reactions particularly on the faces of my mother and my wife and kids will live with me forever.   Although I’m sure that the award will not bring with it any domestic duties relaxation or privileges/exemptions!”

Martyn Henderson, Chief Executive of the Sports Grounds Safety Authority, said: “I’m so thrilled that Ken’s integrity, professionalism and expertise has been recognised in this way.  Ken is respected around the world as the foremost authority on sports grounds safety and it is a huge privilege to work alongside him at the SGSA.”

This year’s Birthday Honours were delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.  Ken learned in May that he was a recipient for the Honour but was sworn to secrecy for the last six months.

Ken said: “Mixed in with the pride I felt was also an element of fear, fear of inadvertently leaking the news to others. I can tell you that being given incredibly good news but then not being able to tell anyone is not an easy thing to do.  I have always prided myself in being able to keep a secret, I now know that I am more than able to do that, and over a long period!”

In the video below we interview Ken about receiving the award, his career and what the future holds.