Supporters groups react to the news

The excitement of this announcement is incredible. As fans we have waited for what seems forever and finally the club’s and our dream is coming. With the promotion push, the passion of the fans is at fever pitch and we can’t wait for more information. There seems to be a greater acceptance that the City needs not only a football club but a community vision that we can all be proud of.

I see at first hand the new wave OKf support and interest the club is attracting, so the release of these stadium plans provide perfect timing as we look to the future with pride and optimism.

We have waited for so long for this and as fans are ready to lift the roof on the new stadium when it’s ready. Until then, we’ll be at Clarence Park supporting with passion and pride. It’s a huge step forward for the club We’ve had speculation and rumours for years and finally something concrete for us to get excited about. City’s fans are renowned for passion and pride and the new stadium is a fantastic signal of the club’s intentions for success on and off the pitch.

Lee Wood
Stand By Your Saints Chairman

A new ground for St Albans City Football Club

The news that a submission has been made to build a new ground along with an enabling development of 900 houses at Noke Lane adjacent to the M25, is probably of no surprise to supporters. The owners have for a number of years made clear their intentions to provide a ground that facilitates more than just 1 or 2 matches a fortnight, something that is not achievable at Clarence Park due to the limited space and restrictive covenant on the location. The Supporters Trust circulated a survey to members when a site was proposed at Colney Heath Lane in 2013. There was no overall consensus regarding the move. We will again be canvassing all supporters on their views on the proposed new site.

For many years now the football club has been seeking to relocate from Clarence Park and the efforts of the current owners have gone a long way down to meeting this objective compared to any previous attempts. The ground will include facilities for conferences/banqueting and other uses which would bring in much needed non match day revenue and hopefully make the club financially sustainable without the current annual cash injection from the owners.

Speaking personally, I cannot see any way that the club can be a self financing organisation by remaining at the current location, where anything up to £100k shortfall occurs each season. As a supporter and volunteer at the club I see each match day the shortcoming at Clarence Park in terms of parking, accessibility, facilities for supporters and a crumbling infrastructure. That said, I will be looking for certain conditions to be in place to protect the proposed new ground for use as a sports facility for the whole of its life. This proposed move will certainly not meet with universal support from everyone given the location and the additional travel distance to matches. We as a supporters trust will review what is proposed and the business plan that backs it up just as we did with the 2013 site and raise issues from supporters with the owners.

Ian Rogers
Saints City Trust Chairman

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