The 3G pitch at Huish Park has been removed from land restricted from development, South Somerset District Council (SSDC) has confirmed.
The change to the ‘core land‘ identified agreed as part of the deal to sell the stadium and surrounding land in May means that only the stadium and surrounding access are restricted from development.
The council and club chairman Scott Priestnall have confirmed to Gloverscast that the change leaves the option for the 3G pitch to be relocated, freeing up the area it currently occupies for development.
No plans for the development of the site have been made available as yet and therefore these changes appear to be leaving options open rather than representing any concrete plans.
Robert Orrett, Commercial Property, Land and Development Manager at SSDC, said: “I can confirm that the lease of the core land contains restrictions as to use so that it can only be used for football club and ancillary purposes. The lease is for 24 years 11 months and those restrictions apply for that period.
“The core lease boundary was revised to exclude the 3G training pitch as the detailed legal work led SSDC to require its original freehold land, which was already on long lease to YTFC, to be entirely excluded. The thinking around the core lease was that it allowed flexibility for the 3G pitch to be relocated onto the long leasehold area if required.”
This information and the reason for the change was confirmed by chairman Scott Priestnall, who added the change had been made “prior to the completion of the deal“, which was announced on May 20.
The council owns a four-acre strip of land which runs between Western Avenue and the club’s main car park which is leases to the club on a 99-year lease – which could be described as a “long leasehold area.”
In August, Mr Orrett confirmed “initial discussions about the preparation of development proposals” for the land acquired by SSDC had commence and he declined to provide an update on this at this point.
Last month, the chairman told a meeting of Yeovil Town Supporters’ Alliance that details of the preferred scheme to develop the Huish Park site “should be available before Christmas” and would also include the redevelopment of the stadium.
The minutes of the meeting – read in full here – showed Mr Priestnall gave the following update: “He updated the meeting on the proposed developments during the last few months. He has been working with architects, consultancy firms and the council to produce drawings and to find out what developments are possible. The plans will go to public consultation before being submitted. There has been a lot of activity with the council during the past year. The details of the preferred scheme should be available before Christmas, but no formal application will take place this year. SP explained that he is not looking to just develop the land but to re-develop the stadium.”
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