Fresh from the defeat on the buy-back of their own ground, Chelsea at least have some good news at last – the Council are on their side!
Last week Chelsea FC lost in a crucial vote about whether or not the Chelsea Pitch Owners would sell the ground back to the football club. The ground was originally spilt from the club by Ken Bates when the club had more precarious finances, in a bid to make sure that the football club always had a home at stamford Bridge – it was sold in tiny portions to over 1200 different fans to make buying it all back nigh on impossible for developers, and the such like.
Chelsea wanted to buy the ground back, but the Chelsea Pitch Owners decided that they did not want to sell, and risk the club being moved to another part of London, or even out of London altogether! It was a set-back for the club, who need to move in order to build a bigger stadium, and properly compete with the likes of Manchester United (76,000 stadium) and Arsenal (60,000 stadium). Chelsea currently have a capacity corwd of just under 40,000.
“In light of the recent decision by Chelsea Pitch Owners (CPO) to retain its freehold of the ground, we reaffirm our desire to see Chelsea remain in the borough and our commitment to help the club remain at their historic home,” Hammersmith and Fulham Council said in a statement.
“The council now proposes to examine whether there are planning options to expand Stamford Bridge to accommodate a larger capacity, recognising that such a project must be economically viable, benefit local businesses and not unreasonably affect residents.”