BHS bleachers condemned

Published 12:22 pm Monday, August 21, 2017

The bleachers of Billingsley’s football stadium were deemed unsafe for fans and the school is in the midst of working on a solution with two weeks until the start of the Bears’ season.

The decision to condemn the bleachers came after first year principal Gregory Pittman raised some questions after a tour of the stadium.

Superintendent of Autauga County Schools Spence Agee was made aware of the possible issue and an engineer inspected and verified the deteriorating status of the concrete bleachers.

“My concerns were his concerns,” Pittman said.

Mims Field, as Billingsley’s football stadium is known, was built roughly five decades ago and the bleachers is a sign of the facility showing its age.

According to Pittman, the school is currently in the process of tearing down the bleachers, and the plan at the moment is to replace them with aluminum bleachers.

The aluminum bleachers will serve as a temporary fixture that Pittman and Athletic Director J.T. Lawrence both hope will not delay any future plans to construct a new stadium at the school.

Although the timing is not ideal so close to the start of the season, it was a decision made with safety as the priority.

Pittman has received several calls and interest from people in the community willing to volunteer their time or equipment in demolishment of the current bleachers.

“It’s good to know that we have a lot of caring people,” Pittman said. “We’re proud of our facilities here at Billingsley.”

Though Pittman is in his first year as the principal at Billingsley, he is familiar with the athletic side of things as well, having been a coach in the past.

Until the temporary bleachers are available, the Bears will play their scheduled home games at Marbury High School, which is also in Autauga County.

However, there still remains plenty of moving parts that have to be worked out logistically between the two schools, Lawrence said.

It is not just the high school varsity program that is affected, but also the junior varsity, middle school and youth leagues.