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Supervisory stewards

Supervisory stewards are an important part of the safety team chain of command.

Supervisory stewards – also known as Chief Stewards, Senior Stewards or Team Leaders – form a link in the chain of command between the Safety Officer and/or Deputy Safety Officer, and the stewards.

Typically, supervisory stewards are responsible for a team of stewards who perform locational and/or functional roles.

In the UK, newly appointed supervisors complete their training towards the Level 3 Certificate or Level 3 Extended Certificate in Spectator Safety Supervision at the earliest opportunity, but not more than six months after being appointed.

Supervisory stewards should:

  • demonstrate leadership qualities, interpersonal skills and the ability to control those working under their direction
  • have the communication skills necessary to conduct pre-event briefings, and to issue instructions
  • be proactive throughout an event by monitoring the stewards and/or areas over which they have control
  • in response to an incident, and without having to wait for instructions from the Safety Officer, advise the control point of any action they are about to take and, if available, request CCTV coverage of the area, before directing stewards to respond to the incident
  • after the event, debrief the stewards for which they are responsible, and
  • report to the Safety Officer any incidents or defects at the venue, or any deficiencies in the stewarding operation.

It is also considered good practice for competent supervisors to assume the role of Chief Steward or Deputy Safety Officer on some occasions in order to give the safety management team a degree of resilience, and to encourage individuals to further their occupational competency.

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