I do believe that our locally elected councillors should feel a sense of shame about the shabby way they have treated a local sports club, says Canterbury City chairman Tim Clark
CANTERBURY CITY chairman Tim Clark criticised their local council after turning down the club’s new stadium plans.
Councillors unanimously rejected plans to build a 125 millon pounds sports and leisure complex – featuring 175 holiday homes on protected countryside in Bridge, near Canterbury.
The developer Quinn Estates was hoping to build a new stadium for Canterbury City, along with six new pitches for the rugby club on an area of outstanding natural beauty at Highland Court Farm.
“It was immensely disappointing to see two years hard work voted down by the planning committee on Tuesday night,” said Mr Clark, in a statement, which was posted on www.canterburycityfc.net.
“Perhaps even more disappointing is to once again hear the hollow words from local councillors about the great work the football (and rugby club) does but not to match those words with any form of action.
“We should not lose sight of the fact that in 1999 the council pocketed £14 million from the sale of Kingsmead Stadium matched with a clear promise to find Canterbury City FC a new home.
“Having taken the money and run (quite literally given they abandoned any attempts to find us a home in 2013) I do believe that our locally elected councillors should feel a sense of shame about the shabby way they have treated a local sports club.
“Perhaps even more worryingly at a time when more and more of our young people are obese or leading lifestyles without any sports participation at all it seems clear to me that at the highest level of our local council there is no coordinated strategy to get our youngsters locally engaged in sport.
“Again, hollow words about the great work that both the football and rugby clubs undertake in the community but no support for them from the council itself.
“The football and rugby clubs have worked closely together over the last year and it should be patently obvious to anyone that a sports hub would bring immense benefits, both physical and mental, to our youth locally and so it is really the next generation who are going to suffer from the councils inaction and lack of vision.
“Anyone involved in non-league football in Kent who wants to show their support for Canterbury City FC can do so by coming along to Salters Lane (in Faversham) on Sunday 24th February and cheering us on in the Quarter Finals of the FA Vase against Biggleswade.”
“Whilst I would hope the City council might take notice of a bumper crowd what I do know as a fact is that it would be greatly appreciated as a show of solidarity by everyone at Canterbury City Football Club!
Visit Canterbury City’s website: www.canterburycityfc.co.net