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SarahBell

Council Gives Football Club 5.7M

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http://menmedia.co.uk/oldhamadvertiser/news/s/1453918_councils-57m-deal-to-keep-oldham-athletic-at-boundary-park

Oldham Athletic are set to stay at Boundary Park, we can reveal.

It is understood council bosses want to give the club £5.7m to redevelop the crumbling 107-year-old ground – which would end plans to move elsewhere.

The cash injection will be used to build a new North Stand, we understand.

The plans are expected to be rubber-stamped at a meeting of town hall bosses on Monday.

Oldham council leader Jim McMahon said: "We don’t want the club to leave the town on our watch.

"This mess has been going on for 10 years. It’s now down to Oldham Athletic to make this a success.

"We wanted to keep the club in the town and we have done that."

The League One club had hoped to sell up and switch to a brand new 12,000-capacity stadium which was to be built in Failsworth.

They spent around £5m acquiring land close to Broadway in preparation for the move.

But those plans dramatically collapsed in February when the Charity Commission ruled a stadium could not be built on the site thanks to a covenant dating back to the First World War.

And on Monday proposals for the council to buy the Lancaster Club, part of the land, from Latics will go before a cabinet meeting.

It is thought any funds raised would go towards the Latics redevelopment with the Lancaster Club possibly being turned into a leisure complex.

So why don't they sell the land to someone else recoup their costs?

Can the council afford to run the existing facilities let alone build more?

Edited by SarahBell

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Oldham council leader Jim McMahon said: "We don’t want the club to leave the town on our watch.

Erm... if Oldham Athletic left Oldham, wouldn't that just make them Athletic???

Another example of government getting involved unnecessarily, at great cost. Let the private team find their own ground. The council can create more jobs with 5.7m in multiple other ways. If people in Oldham really want to save the club, then have a fundraiser. Or are they too heavily taxed by an idiotic council/govt to choose where they spend their own money?

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Yep austerity alive and kicking in Leeds as well ,our council have just saved Farsley Celtic from oblivion with our council tax money and increases in local Park and playing field increases, Andrew Carter Leeds City council leader is a big supporter and represents for the conservatives Calverley and yes you guessed it Farsley, he's at most of their games ;)

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Erm... if Oldham Athletic left Oldham, wouldn't that just make them Athletic???

Another example of government getting involved unnecessarily, at great cost. Let the private team find their own ground. The council can create more jobs with 5.7m in multiple other ways. If people in Oldham really want to save the club, then have a fundraiser. Or are they too heavily taxed by an idiotic council/govt to choose where they spend their own money?

It was under Labour's watch that the council bought the Roxy Cinema as a going concern (figure can not be revealed under FOI as it's commercially sensitive) - and then closed it and knocked it down.

http://maps.google.com/maps?q=Roxy+Cinema,+Roman+Road,+Oldham,+United+Kingdom&hl=en&ll=53.518943,-2.145081&spn=0.008216,0.01929&sll=53.518892,-2.144995&sspn=0.008535,0.01929&t=h&z=16&layer=c&cbll=53.518746,-2.14521&panoid=ujusg39E4vFrnqUR7j_pOA&cbp=12,70.22,,0,3.8

The bit of orange wall is the last remains of the Roxy.

They landbanked huge bits of land, Bought a hotel. Knocked that down.

Oldham council should just let the businesses own the land and get on with being the council.

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It was under Labour's watch that the council bought the Roxy Cinema as a going concern (figure can not be revealed under FOI as it's commercially sensitive) - and then closed it and knocked it down.

http://maps.google.c...12,70.22,,0,3.8

The bit of orange wall is the last remains of the Roxy.

They landbanked huge bits of land, Bought a hotel. Knocked that down.

Oldham council should just let the businesses own the land and get on with being the council.

they think its all over, but the Oldham Council has just been awarded a taxpayers PENALTY.

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Erm... if Oldham Athletic left Oldham, wouldn't that just make them Athletic???

Another example of government getting involved unnecessarily, at great cost. Let the private team find their own ground. The council can create more jobs with 5.7m in multiple other ways. If people in Oldham really want to save the club, then have a fundraiser. Or are they too heavily taxed by an idiotic council/govt to choose where they spend their own money?

Tell that to West Ham. They've got a 40 million loan from Newham council for the Olympic stadium.

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I can't believe what they spend taxpayers money on in this country. I like football. But if I didn't, and I lived in Oldham, paying tax to keep a professional football team going would make me cross. Not nearly as cross as the government paying householders interest on their 'investment', but quite cross nonetheless.

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I can't believe what they spend taxpayers money on in this country. I like football. But if I didn't, and I lived in Oldham, paying tax to keep a professional football team going would make me cross. Not nearly as cross as the government paying householders interest on their 'investment', but quite cross nonetheless.

A councillor probably has a few shops in the vicinity of the club...good for business.

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I hope all the football fans in Oldham will be pleased the next time they're writing their council tax cheques.

The club probably made dire sabre-rattling threats about upping sticks, if so, the council should have called their bluff.

I would direct the jury's attention to the new AFC Wimbledon which has started up from scratch following the winding up of Wimbledon FC. If Oldham Athletic did move away, I'm certain that some sort of football club would rise up to take its place.

Furthermore, if I was a council with £5.7M burning a hole in my pocket which I wanted to allocate towards sport, I would spend it on grass-roots stuff like renovating public leisure centres and paying for coaches for kids. Giving it to a private company for that private company's sole use is an utter disgrace.

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I can't believe what they spend taxpayers money on in this country. I like football. But if I didn't, and I lived in Oldham, paying tax to keep a professional football team going would make me cross. Not nearly as cross as the government paying householders interest on their 'investment', but quite cross nonetheless.

I am also a lower leagues football supporter (third flight, League One, Division 3 in old money) and most of the problems faced by football clubs these days are directly or indirectly due to the Premiershi* and the big money men coming into the game and distorting it from the top.

Without meaning to hijack the thread, I really think that football of all levels (and possibly some other sports / professions) would benefit from some realism at the top end. I read about individual Premiershi* players getting paid 250k PER WEEK for kicking a ball around a park, whilst whole clubs (which are sometimes a community centre point) going out of business for the same amount of money. It is sickening but while there are no salary caps, or any limits on what a club can pay (i.e. total expenditure not exceeding total income), and as long as players are more powerful than the clubs then nothing will change.

It is kinda like the economy ... the wealthy control the majority of the finance/assets and are the self same persons who make all the important rules, and turkeys don't vote for Christmas so unfortunately we in football are stuck with the status quo where cashflow (of whatever persuasion but usually in the form of Chairman gifts/loans to fund his/her little plaything) wins in an ever upscaling game of "mine is bigger than yours"!

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I have to admit a bit of a VI in this one but the trouble Oldham has had with this new stadium dates back some time. To the best of my recollection it goes something like this: -

Firstly back in the early 90's the opportunities for the club were massive as this period coincided with the most successful era in the club's history.

In 92 the club submitted plans to develop the ground, including ground to the East of the stadium and Clayton Fields to the West. This was to be funded by the sale of Westwood running track to B&Q and the development of a retail park on Clayton fields. The club at some point had £11m in the bank for this development and didn't need any public money.

However Clayton Fields had a protective covenant dating back over a hundred years stating that the land was held in trust for the local folk. Today the fields are hemmed in by three major dual carriageways and are only really used for Weekend armature football, for this the club had plans in place to relocate and improve on the existing facilities.

This stadium has been used as a party political football for nearly 20 years, LibDems do not want it Labour do.

Former councillor John Battye [Labour] was asked why he stood for the council again and his reply was: "Unfinished business."

His biggest regret is not being around in 2001 to finish the Sports Park 2000 project which would have given Oldham Athletic a new home on Clayton Playing Fields.

He lays the blame squarely at the feet on the Liberal Democrats, who took charge of the council in 2000 when he lost his seat.

"One more year, that is all that was needed," he mused, adding: "The majority of the money was in place, the planning permission was in place and we had permission from the Charity Commission to develop Clayton and replace the football fields on the site of the old stadium."

"Lots of untruths have been spoken and published about the project. There were three sets of plans: a 20,000-plus seater stadium with a roof at £27 million; a smaller stadium with a retractable roof at £20 million and a 16,000-seater standard stadium without cover."

"That last was our preferred option. We had £11 million in the bank from the sale of Westwood running track to B&Q, we had a further £2 million promised for stadium naming rights which left a shortfall of £3 million which could easily have been sourced at competitive rates on a stadium that was all-but funded."

"We had verbal promises from BSkyB to use the stadium as their northern hub for parking of their outside broadcast vehicles and as a northern studio."

"Everything was in place — and we just needed another 12 months."

"Unfinished business."

He was the asked 'where are we then, with the stadium situation?'

The article then says: The response spoke volumes — nothing of substance was said other than "We as a party, as a group, are prepared to make and take decisions..."

So it was not a threat from the club to leave more a case of getting a new stadium somewhere before all the money ran out. The club had been trying to redevelop their land and stay on Sheepfoot Lane. By the time you factor in the numerous planning applications, redesigns, fees and appeals it's probably cost them millions.

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Erm... if Oldham Athletic left Oldham, wouldn't that just make them Athletic???

In their dreams.

Maybe I'm a little old-fashioned but I tend to think that councils should stick to the very basic tasks. Social housing, bin collection, street lighting, fixing potholes in the roads.

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In their dreams.

Maybe I'm a little old-fashioned but I tend to think that councils should stick to the very basic tasks. Social housing, bin collection, street lighting, fixing potholes in the roads.

+1

And if you visit Oldham virtually all of it seems to be "for sale" or "to let" presumably at ridiculous zombified prices.

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...how many libraries and other services need to be cut to finance this....this belongs in the realms of fiction and the Council need to be sacked...like now... :rolleyes:

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This stadium has been used as a party political football for nearly 20 years, LibDems do not want it Labour do.

Could it be cos Labour are the party of spending money that isn't theirs?

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Could it be cos Labour are the party of spending money that isn't theirs?

Mind you, I reckon the LibDems ain't much different from Labour. Both are high tax, high spend and lots of oppressive laws parties. Only major difference I can think of is the union funding of Labour.

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Could it be cos Labour are the party of spending money that isn't theirs?

Let's wait and see what the Tories do when the financial sector tanks again, shall we? Don't remember them arguing for market forces when Labour was bailing out the banks.

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Let's wait and see what the Tories do when the financial sector tanks again, shall we? Don't remember them arguing for market forces when Labour was bailing out the banks.

I did mean more locally.

It seems labour in Oldham want to own all the land so they can control what goes on.

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