York’s community stadium will not be ready for the start of the 2016/17 season, it was revealed today.
The news means this will not be York City’s last season at Bootham Crescent.
Instead the aim is to have the Huntington arena finished for the club to make mid-season move in 2016/17.
City of York Council said that the contracts for the community stadium, to include a swimming pool, library and health centre, have yet to be finalised.
In a statement, the council said:
This remains a 62-week programme, and we continue to be in discussions with York City Football Club who remain a key partner in working collaboratively through these issues to minimise any impact to the club and its fans.
‘Very little impact’
A statement by York City FC on Monday (July 13) sought to reassure fans that the long-delayed stadium will be built.
The club’s future depends on the move. It is tied in to a £2 million loan and Persimmon’s plan to develop the Bootham Crescent site.
Although some may be slightly frustrated that the club will not be in a position to move into the new stadium for the start of the 2016/17 season, ensuring the future development is built correctly is crucial in providing a fantastic new home for York City for decades to come.
York City’s statement pointed out that other clubs had switched grounds successfully mid-season, adding:
York City are sure its supporters understand the situation and will continue to look forward to an exciting and prosperous future for the club.
No surprise to fans
The delay was widely anticipated among York City’s supporters.
Writing on the fan’s email newsletter There’s Only One Arthur Bottom on Friday (July 10), Tim Smith wrote: “Just wondering if there’s any City fans out there who believe we’ll be playing at the new stadium development as advertised in a year’s time from now (more or less).
“I’ll start off by saying ‘no’.”
Ray Taylor concurred in the following issue. “Agree with Tim Smith that the likelihood of the new stadium being ready for next season kick off is remote.”