Proposed deal which will see South Somerset District Council purchase Yeovil Town Football Club property is approved
A proposal which will see South Somerset District Council purchase and lease back property owned by Yeovil Town Football Club including Huish Park has been approved.
Councillors on SSDC’s District Executive committee met today (3 December) to consider the investment as part of a proposal to not only ease financial pressures on the club but also to benefit communities across the district.
The club’s short-term financial concerns have been caused by the Coronavirus pandemic, with crowds prevented since March from attending National League matches for public safety and now continuing to be limited by COVID-19 restrictions.
The proposal will also give YTFC the option to buy back the land the club occupies in the future when its financial outlook has improved.
Council Leader Val Keitch said: “The decision to approve this proposal was made today following a detailed and thorough debate which was quite right given its importance.
“We have agreed to make an investment that will not only benefit a football club which has such an important role to play in our community but one which will also benefit our residents.
“It is our responsibility to ensure we offer any support where we can to businesses big and small, which we have done before and throughout this pandemic, and we will continue to do so.”
John Clark, Portfolio Holder for Commercial Strategy added: “This commercial investment has been analysed with the same rigour as all our commercial investments, and meets the Council’s requirements for return on investment at an acceptable level of risk.”
Approval of the proposal was welcomed by YTFC chairman Scott Priestnall who said: “I would like to thank the officers at SSDC for their time and effort in putting together the proposal to buy the stadium and land at Huish Park.
“Being a chairman and owner of a football club is very different to operating other businesses and as a custodian of this fantastic club, I feel it is my duty to not only ensure its survival during these difficult times but also to give it the future the community and the supporters deserve.
“I would finally like to thank local Councillors for their time and support today, and I look forward to moving forward with SSDC and working with our supporters’ groups to deliver the best possible future for Yeovil Town Football Club.”