Supporters pledge to protect football club

By Emily Pearce

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

 

Supporters pledge to protect football club

Plans for the new Asda store on the Isle of Wight.

NEWPORT FC supporters have pledged to safeguard the future of the club, following news its ground could be sold to Asda.

The supermarket giant has submitted plans for a store next to the club's ground, but the ground’s owners, South Coast Leisure (SCL), hope to entice Asda to buy St George’s Park and build a bigger store there instead.

It would use £1m from the deal to relocate the club and is due to submit a planning application to the Isle of Wight Council.

Steve Carey, a spokesman for SCL, which bought the ground from administrators eight years ago, said there was no way the club could stay at St George's Park if the application was approved.

Newport FC Supporters' Club Trust, which owns the football club, said it was still possible the club could stay at St George's Park, but if it had to move, the trust would ensure the security of the club was a priority in any decisions.

In a statement issued this week, the trust said: "It was just a few years ago this club was facing extinction , but the hard work of a handful of die-hard fans belonging to the Newport Football Club Supporters' Trust, ensured it’s survival. The backbone of the trust was its 'love for the club’ and its security rather than financial gains.

"Since the trust took ownership of the club, it has constantly strived to make sure the club’s future is secured through it’s own people. As majority shareholders, we feel it is vital for fans to have a voice and the trust was set up to provide that voice.

"The recent proposal and speculation as to where the club will play in the future will become clear in time. It is quite possible we could remain at St Georges Park, our home for a quarter of a century. If however we are forced into a move, the trust will ensure any decisions made will be with the future security of the club as a priority.

"The club has made great strides this season and the management, players and staff are working very hard to continue that momentum.

"As we enter 2013 and celebrate our 125th anniversary, we encourage you to continue to support the club in any way you can; your attendance at matches is greatly appreciated and we thank you for that.

"Finally, we urge all Newport fans to join the supporters' trust and make our collective voice even stronger in the future."

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