Darlington football and rugby clubs finalise plans for groundshare

The Northern Echo: MAKING PLANS: From left Tony Stowe, from Darlington Rugby Club, Peter Griffin, director of facilities for rugby club, John Tempest, from Darlington CIC, Michael Wilkinson, chairman of the rugby club, and Martin Jesper, director of Darlington FC. MAKING PLANS: From left Tony Stowe, from Darlington Rugby Club, Peter Griffin, director of facilities for rugby club, John Tempest, from Darlington CIC, Michael Wilkinson, chairman of the rugby club, and Martin Jesper, director of Darlington FC.

A DRIVE to bring the Quakers back to Darlington is gathering pace with plans for a groundshare due to be submitted within weeks.

A planning application is being finalised which if approved would allow changes to be made to the Blackwell Meadows site, owned by Darlington Rugby Football Club.

The alterations would ensure the ground meets FA standards and would be suitable for use by both the rugby and football clubs.

Martin Jesper, football club chief executive, said: “This is a fan-owned football club and without their loyal and unstinting support, the club wouldn’t be here now.

“I know everyone wants the club to return to its home after two years in exile. We are committed to returning as soon as possible and are working extremely well with our colleagues at the rugby club.”

The two clubs have already signed a memorandum of understanding.

The document sets out the terms of future discussions on the practicalities of a ground share at Blackwell Meadows, off Grange Road.

The ultimate aim is to create a community sports hub at the site.

Tony Stowe, secretary of Darlington RFC, added: “We’ve had a vision to turn this corner of Darlington into a community sports hub.

“Adding the football club to the rugby union and league and amateur football we already have will means it continues to develop.”

The groundshare has the backing of Darlington Borough Council, which would help with planning and car parking arrangements.

Darlington MP Jenny Chapman is also supporting the proposal.

She said: “The fact is the rugby club and football club have a shared vision and everyone is working hard to help and put in place strong governance that will safeguard the future of sport in the town.”

The football club has been urging fans to support the move back to Darlington with a major fundraising drive.

Comments (10)

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12:29pm Wed 5 Feb 14

Lionel1 says...

very little new detail in this story from the last time it was ran....
very little new detail in this story from the last time it was ran.... Lionel1
  • Score: 0

12:29pm Wed 5 Feb 14

Lionel1 says...

very little new detail in this story from the last time it was ran....
very little new detail in this story from the last time it was ran.... Lionel1
  • Score: -3

1:41pm Wed 5 Feb 14

Darloresident says...

Obviously you don't follow the story then Lionel1.Your comment shows your ignorance on matters concerning the football club.There is a forum at the ground tonight - you should go and get up to date with all the exciting things happening.
Obviously you don't follow the story then Lionel1.Your comment shows your ignorance on matters concerning the football club.There is a forum at the ground tonight - you should go and get up to date with all the exciting things happening. Darloresident
  • Score: 11

3:27pm Wed 5 Feb 14

judygone says...

The council is helping with car parking arrangements. Does this mean £5.00 to park again ????
The council is helping with car parking arrangements. Does this mean £5.00 to park again ???? judygone
  • Score: 3

3:45pm Wed 5 Feb 14

Lionel1 says...

Darloresident wrote:
Obviously you don't follow the story then Lionel1.Your comment shows your ignorance on matters concerning the football club.There is a forum at the ground tonight - you should go and get up to date with all the exciting things happening.
I can only apologise for my ignorance Darloresident!

How's the fundrasing going anyway? You been asked to check down the back of the sofa yet?
[quote][p][bold]Darloresident[/bold] wrote: Obviously you don't follow the story then Lionel1.Your comment shows your ignorance on matters concerning the football club.There is a forum at the ground tonight - you should go and get up to date with all the exciting things happening.[/p][/quote]I can only apologise for my ignorance Darloresident! How's the fundrasing going anyway? You been asked to check down the back of the sofa yet? Lionel1
  • Score: -6

3:47pm Wed 5 Feb 14

swagger says...

Darlington FC. Fund- Raising Drive
From the clubs website
The Board of Darlington 1883 Limited is delighted to announce the launch of a major fund-raising drive to support its dream of returning to its home town. The club has launched its fund raising initiative which allows fans to buy further shares in the club and thereby not only provide further financial stability for the club, but also allow for plans for the return to Darlington to be firmly embedded.
The club hopes to raise a minimum of £50,000 through a combination of 3 unique fund raising initiatives – devised to appeal to all fans depending on their personal circumstances and offering associated rewards for investing – including opportunities and incentives for corporate and community partners too. To view the site go to:
www.squareknot.co.uk
/pitches
Darlington FC. Fund- Raising Drive From the clubs website The Board of Darlington 1883 Limited is delighted to announce the launch of a major fund-raising drive to support its dream of returning to its home town. The club has launched its fund raising initiative which allows fans to buy further shares in the club and thereby not only provide further financial stability for the club, but also allow for plans for the return to Darlington to be firmly embedded. The club hopes to raise a minimum of £50,000 through a combination of 3 unique fund raising initiatives – devised to appeal to all fans depending on their personal circumstances and offering associated rewards for investing – including opportunities and incentives for corporate and community partners too. To view the site go to: www.squareknot.co.uk /pitches swagger
  • Score: 2

3:51pm Wed 5 Feb 14

swagger says...

From the Darlington official website.


Local Business Invests in Quakers

The club’s fundraising initiative aims to draw on the support of all supporters of the football club and of the local business community. It is with great delight that we are proud to announce that a County Durham based Industrial Roofing contractor has joined the ranks of the growing business contingent prepared to back the Quakers.
aldersclad logo

Alderclad Ltd. based in Seaham, through one of their owners Anthony Nevison, has pledged a sum of money to the football club to help ensure its financial stability and to invest in the return to its home town. When Mr Nevison saw the monumental efforts being made by the current board of directors and fund raisers to get the club back to where it belongs in terms of geographical and league status, he said that he was only too willing to do what he could.

Anthony said, “Anyone involved in running a business knows that for continued success you need a good end product otherwise all your hard work and enthusiasm will be wasted. The next vital ingredient is people that you know and can trust, for example staff, clients and suppliers. Once you have these in place you have a fighting chance. The enthusiasm of everyone involved in the club is plain to see and with the current community based projects, as well as the on field footballing success, the end product seems to be getting there. Without question every single person involved with the club has a desire to move forward. We in the business community have many pressures put on us and occasionally we get the pleasure of being able to give a little back. Let’s hope for the future success of the club both on and off the field we are able to call on more businesses such as Alderclad to back the Quakers.”

Darlington Football Club is grateful to the investment made by Alderclad Ltd and we welcome all businesses to take up the challenge with us and invest in our future. If you would like more information about investing visit the page on our website at or you can invest directly by visiting Square Knot at www.squareknot.co.uk
/pitches. If you would like to contact the club regarding the benefit packages please email to commercial@dfc1883.c
o.uk.
From the Darlington official website. Local Business Invests in Quakers The club’s fundraising initiative aims to draw on the support of all supporters of the football club and of the local business community. It is with great delight that we are proud to announce that a County Durham based Industrial Roofing contractor has joined the ranks of the growing business contingent prepared to back the Quakers. aldersclad logo Alderclad Ltd. based in Seaham, through one of their owners Anthony Nevison, has pledged a sum of money to the football club to help ensure its financial stability and to invest in the return to its home town. When Mr Nevison saw the monumental efforts being made by the current board of directors and fund raisers to get the club back to where it belongs in terms of geographical and league status, he said that he was only too willing to do what he could. Anthony said, “Anyone involved in running a business knows that for continued success you need a good end product otherwise all your hard work and enthusiasm will be wasted. The next vital ingredient is people that you know and can trust, for example staff, clients and suppliers. Once you have these in place you have a fighting chance. The enthusiasm of everyone involved in the club is plain to see and with the current community based projects, as well as the on field footballing success, the end product seems to be getting there. Without question every single person involved with the club has a desire to move forward. We in the business community have many pressures put on us and occasionally we get the pleasure of being able to give a little back. Let’s hope for the future success of the club both on and off the field we are able to call on more businesses such as Alderclad to back the Quakers.” Darlington Football Club is grateful to the investment made by Alderclad Ltd and we welcome all businesses to take up the challenge with us and invest in our future. If you would like more information about investing visit the page on our website at or you can invest directly by visiting Square Knot at www.squareknot.co.uk /pitches. If you would like to contact the club regarding the benefit packages please email to commercial@dfc1883.c o.uk. swagger
  • Score: 3

4:57pm Wed 5 Feb 14

behonest says...

judygone wrote:
The council is helping with car parking arrangements. Does this mean £5.00 to park again ????
Ha!

Hopefully we'll get promoted this year and be able to move back to Darlo next year. I'll buy a season ticket anyway and am looking forward to it. But yes, I couldn't help smiling when I saw 'Darlington Council would help with car parking arrangements'!
[quote][p][bold]judygone[/bold] wrote: The council is helping with car parking arrangements. Does this mean £5.00 to park again ????[/p][/quote]Ha! Hopefully we'll get promoted this year and be able to move back to Darlo next year. I'll buy a season ticket anyway and am looking forward to it. But yes, I couldn't help smiling when I saw 'Darlington Council would help with car parking arrangements'! behonest
  • Score: 1

5:36pm Wed 5 Feb 14

loan_star says...

Since DBC let Mowden Park Rugby Club off with the car park charge and residents parking scheme then any move to force the football club to charge for parking will no doubt raise a storm and convince people that the council just wants to cash in on the football club.
Since DBC let Mowden Park Rugby Club off with the car park charge and residents parking scheme then any move to force the football club to charge for parking will no doubt raise a storm and convince people that the council just wants to cash in on the football club. loan_star
  • Score: 3

8:46pm Wed 5 Feb 14

MSG says...

I wish they would circulate an artists impression of how they wish the ground will look. Will the old Tin Shed be erected behind one goal ? What capacity is envisaged - 7000 ?
I wish they would circulate an artists impression of how they wish the ground will look. Will the old Tin Shed be erected behind one goal ? What capacity is envisaged - 7000 ? MSG
  • Score: 0

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