Hares plan new stand

March Town Res. v Chatteris Town Res action'General view of the stand'www.fenlandcitizen.co.uk/buyaphoto
March Town Res. v Chatteris Town Res action'General view of the stand'www.fenlandcitizen.co.uk/buyaphoto

MARCH TOWN Football Club will look to build a new grandstand at the GER ground after they were promised a longer lease in the corridors of Peterborough County Court on Friday.

It is also believed that March Town will receive a payment of over £8,000 from the GER Sports Club as well.

Landlords March GER Sports Club and March Town have been engaged in an 18-month feud with the football club claiming over £8,000 in unpaid payments through the courts. But finally common sense prevailed before the case went before the judge and the two parties resolved their dispute after two hours of talking.

The problems started when the football club were reluctant to pay an £8 membership for each player and they ceased to use the club after games and the GER withdrew their weekly payments of around £160.

Since the fallout players travelled into March and used the Cock Inn after games, but a number of away teams have this season left for home straight after the game.

Ridgeons League rules state that teams should be entertained at grounds after the game, but March apparently have dispensation for that at the moment.

March had just 12 years left on their lease but they wanted a new agreement which is to be drawn up and it appears the lease will be for at least 20 years.

The extended lease will enable March Town to seek the various grants available to improve their facilities especially to a wooden stand that has stood for over 70 years.

The Football Foundation gave nearly £50,000 towards Wisbech’s new stadium. They can seek other money from Fenland District Council and Sport England who are part of the Lottery funding, but will need to raise a large amount themselves.

GER Sports Club spokesman Steve McGregor, of Fraser Dawbarns solicitors, said: “It was never on the GER’s agenda to end the March Town lease for the premises.

“A new lease has been agreed and a longer term will enable the football club to improve its premises. In the long term it will save the GER Sports Club a considerable amount of money.”

The footballers are to continue their after-game entertainment at the Cock Inn for this season at least but one of the long-term plans is believed to include a clubroom on the ground with a licence.

A spokesman for March Town Football Club said in a statement: “The parties have been involved in a complex dispute which has now been settled. The settlement is conditional on several factors and we remain confident that these can be satisfied allowing the matter to be concluded.”

March Town chairman Phil White was unable to comment any further.