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Town council raises Monks Lane concerns with district council 07/01/22

Uncategorised Posted on Sat, January 08, 2022 11:35:38

More political football as councils clash over Newbury’s Monks Lane Sports Hub

Councils clash over Newbury sports hub development

The ‘rec’ opens 21/12/21

Uncategorised Posted on Tue, December 21, 2021 18:59:14

Newbury Today says, “Faraday Road green space opens for play”

West Berkshire Council says, “Opening of public green space at Faraday Road, Newbury”

Monks Lane sports hub news 17/12/21

Uncategorised Posted on Fri, December 17, 2021 08:03:55

Is it in the back of the net? Monks Lane Sports Hub proposal

Monks Lane cash deal agreed behind closed doors

Goal?! Newbury’s Monks Lane Sports Hub gets go ahead amid cries of foul play

Newbury Rugby Club will get wads of council cash for football pitch hire

Planning approved! 25/11/21

Uncategorised Posted on Thu, November 25, 2021 18:22:11

Plans for football to return to Newbury’s Faraday Road approved – but council still intends to move football to Monks Lane

See the applications here:

Reference 20/01530/OUT
Application Validated Thu 13 Aug 2020
Address Newbury Football Club Newbury Football Club Faraday Road Newbury RG14 2AD
Proposal Outline permission for replacement of clubhouse and new spectator stand at Newbury Football Ground. Matters to be considered: Access and Layout.
Status Decided
Decision Approval
Decision Issued Date Thu 25 Nov 2021

Reference 20/01966/COMIND
Application Validated Tue 01 Sep 2020
Address Newbury Football Club Newbury Football Club Faraday Road Newbury RG14 2AD
Proposal Renewal and expansion of the existing football pitch to form a new 3G main pitch and a smaller 3G training / practice pitch
Status Decided
Decision Approval
Decision Issued Date Thu 25 Nov 2021

Huge cost for sports ‘hub’ 23/11/21

Uncategorised Posted on Tue, November 23, 2021 18:03:02

Extra £2m costs claims for Monks Lane Sports Hub in Newbury

ITV News report on Faraday Road 22/11/21

Uncategorised Posted on Tue, November 23, 2021 18:00:19

Football could return to Newbury site after four years without a home

(including interview with NCFG!)

Clandestine football ground demolition continues 03/11/21

Uncategorised Posted on Wed, November 03, 2021 18:30:10

Fence protest by Newbury town councillors at Faraday Road football ground

NCFG’s objection letter to Monks Lane with evidence 27/10/21

Uncategorised Posted on Wed, October 27, 2021 17:43:57

Sent to West Berkshire Councillors and Officers 21/10/21

NCFG response to Sports Hub Planning Application

Dear West Berkshire Councillors and Officers

Please find attached Newbury Community Football Group’s detailed response to the Sports Hub proposal and Planning Application

After a detailed review and evaluation and following meetings with Sport England, the FA and the Football Foundation, with regret NCFG cannot support this proposal as a replacement for the existing Newbury Football Ground at Faraday Road.

Furthermore, given the excessive costs, the loss-making business case, the priority (and exclusive financial inducements & free use) given to rugby-club use and the overall design, NCFG also object to the planning application as a standalone 3G football pitch and as such will formally object to Planning Application 21/02173/COMIND.

On top of capital costs of around £3m and based on West Berks Council’s own business case, the total running costs over the period of the lease to the West Berks Council Tax payer is £3.6m. It rises to £6.1m if you include the missing costs identified by Sport England. 

A total cost of £9.17m for a replacement scheme that is not of equivalent or better quality than Faraday Road Football Ground.

To spend this amount on a facility that is not a replacement football ground is an abhorrent waste of tax-payers money. As Sport England stated in their objections, this money could be much better spent on addressing the facility needs across West Berkshire.

The business case fails significantly as Newbury Rugby Club have not only negotiated an “extremely high rent “ (according to  Sport England) of £41k and receive a one-off “lease-premium” of £250,000, they have also managed to negotiate free access to premium slots of the 3G pitch as well as heavily discounted rates for other slots. This means that football teams have to not only pay a much higher rate than rugby teams, but that children’s football teams do not have access to many of the key slots, such as midweek evening for training and Sunday morning for matches – The net impact is a dramatic hit to revenue that forces the scheme to run at a loss every year for 40 years.

It is important to note that NCFG’s own Planning Application to redevelop Faraday Road with a 3G pitch and Step 4 ground grading  with expansion space to Step 2,  comes at a cost to the local tax payer of just £500k capital outlay (due to anticipated Football Foundation contributions). It also has a fully self-sustaining business case with no requirements for running cost support. It is of course rent free as a WBC property and allows full access to all, with no subsidised slots. Furthermore our business case has been formally approved by Sport England.

We would strongly recommend withdrawing from the currently negotiated proposals with Newbury Rugby Club and that an urgent review is carried out of the current governance, over-sight and experience of West Berkshire Council’s negotiating team.

All details can be found in the attached document:

Kind Regards

Lee McDougall


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