Hereford United Outline Stadium Development Plans
Mon 14th Oct 2013 | Football Stadiums & Facilities
Hereford United have outlined how plans for the redevelopment of the club’s home, Edgar Street will help protect the club’s future.
The club have been in negotiations with Hereford Council over the drawing up of a new set of leases for the football ground, however it’s understood that the Hereford United Supporters Trust have submitted a AVC (Asset of Community Value) request to the council.
Non-Executive Director Bob Pitchard, told the official Hereford United website, “We as a board are pleased that we share the common goal with the Supporters Trust to protect Edgar Street for the long term future”
“”We have no issues with anyone wanting to secure Edgar Street as a venue for professional football in the County, but we are under the belief that an ACV taken out now could potentially damage our ongoing talks with developers with regards to the planned development at either end of the ground.
“I believe that the heads of terms and 30/250 year leases drawn up with Hereford Council clearly show that the board and the Council are committed to securing the long term future of Edgar Street as a footballing venue.”
As part of the Government’s Localism Act 2011 people living in England can request that a stadium, pub or other community amenity, even if privately owned, can be listed as an Asset of Community Value. This will mean that if it ever comes up for sale, communities will be able to gain extra time to bid for the ground or asset.
See more on ACVs at Supporters Direct
Pritchard continued to explain the issues that the club’s board have with the ACV being taken at that stage. “Our concerns are that we believe the ACV has been taken out prematurely on the whole existing leases in their current state.
“These leases include the two areas behind the stands that we have agreed with the Council to be made available for development that will in turn help fund, along with grants and funds from the share issue, the essential stadia improvements.”
Pritchard also feels it may cause a problem for the Council, "The Council have made applications for a Compulsory Purchase Order (CPO) on part of the land that the existing leases cover.
“This area of land (in the corner behind the Meadow End and Len Weston Stand) relates to an eventual land-swap agreement that will see that land 'swapped' for an area of land on the opposite corner of the Meadow End.
“This area will be used by the football club in the planned developments, whilst the land under a CPO will be used by the Council for their residential development.
"An ACV taken out now, on the leases in their current form, may prohibit part or all of the Council’s plan for housing development on the Merton Meadow car park."
However, Pritchard feels that there is hope that the issues can be resolved, “We look forward to sitting down with the Chair and Committee of the Supporters Trust to discuss the planned developments, and to draw up plans on how we can all work together for the benefit of the football club.”
Posted by: Aaron Gourley
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