Friday, 20 January 2012

Council endorse recommendations for Margate FC

A number of recommendations that support Margate Football Club’s
future expansion, but protect public open space, have been endorsed by
Thanet District Council.

At a meeting last night (Thursday 19 January), Members agreed a series
of recommendations in relation to leasing arrangements on public space
at Hartsdown Park and Tivoli Park in Margate, although final approval
will be granted by Cabinet when they meet on Thursday 2 February.

The lease extension proposals from Margate Football Club were
originally discussed at a Cabinet meeting on 5 January, but were
referred on to Full Council to ensure that all members could contribute
to the debate.

The recommendations which were approved by Council are as follows:   

● To support the extension of the current lease for the main ground
from 10 to 24 years;
● Refuse granting a lease for an extended area for a football pitch,
as this is too intrusive in Hartsdown Park;
● Advise the removal of the extended parking area from the proposal
or, at most, grant a small extension to the current car park. This would
require the developers to seek an alteration to the current planning
condition on parking provision. The reason for this is to avoid any
further significant intrusion in Tivoli Park;
● Support the granting of a lease within the current football ground
area for the construction of a hotel in line with the approved planning
application, but try and ensure that the lease is as short as possible,
whilst still making the project work financially. Commercial Services
Manager Mark Seed and Cabinet Member for Environmental Services, Cllr.
Alan Poole, to agree the final length of lease;
● Support the extension of the lease for the current five-a-side
pitches and car park from 15 to 24 years, to coincide in timing with the
main ground lease.

A statutory notice, stating the council’s intentions for the leasing
arrangements will now be placed in the local press.

Cabinet Member for Environmental Services Cllr. Alan Poole, said:
“There’s no question over our support for Margate Football Club. 
We’ve been clear that we want to do all that we can to ensure the club
can succeed in the future, but as we’ve said before this can’t come
at any cost.  We have a duty to protect our valuable public open spaces
and have to be firm with proposals that we feel go too far. I believe
that our recommendations reflect this and I’m pleased that with the
backing of Full Council we can now take this forward and bring it to a
final conclusion.”

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