Developer's 'gift' to football club

Developer's 'gift' to football club

Developer's 'gift' to football club

First published in News Exclusive by

A DEVELOPER plans to build 45 new homes and provide an astro turf five-a-side pitch for community use in new proposals to regenerate a Colchester recreation ground.

Luton-based developer Dishland had initially sought to build up to 100 homes on the Gas Recreation Ground, off Bromley Road, and move community club Gas Rec FC to Langham.

But after residents groups and councillors signalled opposition to the plans, Denis Diggin, director of Dishland, has halved the planned number of homes and now plans for the Essex Suffolk Border League side to stay on site and use one of the existing football pitches and upgrade its club house to include a function room.

The astro turf training pitch could be used by the club for training.

“Everyone wins with our plans,” said Mr Diggin.

“By my reckoning, the new plans would allow for 64 per cent of the land to be used by the community, including the football pitch and the five-a-side pitch and a designated play area.”

At the moment, the land is designated as public open space and is not zoned for housing in the

Gas Rec FC chairman Mark Ennew added: “For us, this plan is a gift.

“We have had nothing but trouble for the last ten years with vandalism and unfortunately now we just expect it every week.

But Paul Smith, borough councillor for St John’s, which takes in part of the site, said: “The area is zoned for public open space and it would set a dangerous precedent for other areas of open space in the borough.

“The latest figures show 1,000 homes were completed in the borough last year, set against the requirement of 812, so we are not in need of finding new land for people to build on.”

Comments (16)

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7:17pm Thu 7 Feb 13

Gas Rec says...

To Everyone involved with Gas Rec this would be unbelievable. We are forever repairing the pavilion because of vandals at the clubs expense also new nets that people cut. It's only looked after by the people of Gas Rec. for us to be fenced in would save the club thousands and to have a club house again where we can do fundraising evenings and few drinks after the games with opposing teams would be excellent. We've needed this for years now and if it happens Gas will benefit massively because as a club it's so dishearting to see a club you love go to ruin.
To Everyone involved with Gas Rec this would be unbelievable. We are forever repairing the pavilion because of vandals at the clubs expense also new nets that people cut. It's only looked after by the people of Gas Rec. for us to be fenced in would save the club thousands and to have a club house again where we can do fundraising evenings and few drinks after the games with opposing teams would be excellent. We've needed this for years now and if it happens Gas will benefit massively because as a club it's so dishearting to see a club you love go to ruin. Gas Rec
  • Score: 0

10:38pm Thu 7 Feb 13

Dug says...

To me, the original plans were taking the proverbial!

The revised plans depend on the opinion of locals / people who know the area, imho. On the face of it, developing public open space seems a complete no no to me, but if it's currently a congregation spot for vandals then maybe it's a starter, with local agreement?
To me, the original plans were taking the proverbial! The revised plans depend on the opinion of locals / people who know the area, imho. On the face of it, developing public open space seems a complete no no to me, but if it's currently a congregation spot for vandals then maybe it's a starter, with local agreement? Dug
  • Score: 0

11:40pm Thu 7 Feb 13

Boris says...

What hapens to the teams who now play on the pitch(es) that will be built on?
And if the vandals can't vandalise the sports ground, will they vandalise nearby houses, parked cars, etc?
.
Mostly I disagree with Paul Smith, but he is right in wanting to defend public open space. This proposal is too important to be left to the Gas Rec club to decide on.
What hapens to the teams who now play on the pitch(es) that will be built on? And if the vandals can't vandalise the sports ground, will they vandalise nearby houses, parked cars, etc? . Mostly I disagree with Paul Smith, but he is right in wanting to defend public open space. This proposal is too important to be left to the Gas Rec club to decide on. Boris
  • Score: 0

11:42pm Thu 7 Feb 13

Boris says...

As for gifts from strangers, Mark Ennew should remember that the Greeks gave an impressive wooden horse to the Trojans, but it was their undoing.
As for gifts from strangers, Mark Ennew should remember that the Greeks gave an impressive wooden horse to the Trojans, but it was their undoing. Boris
  • Score: 0

5:10am Fri 8 Feb 13

angryman!!! says...

gift to football and kick in the teeth for local population, this area is already overcrowded and at the mo the football fields act as a nice barrier between welshwood park and greenstead. it would also be overlooked by lots of homes add more congestion to Harwich road which is busy enough, and put strain on the docs, schools etc and ruin salary close and have significant impact on roach vale.
yes not good news for the club, and as a massive football fan shame to see but Saturday kick about vs peoples homes quality of life and house prices, its a no from me and will be letting the council know too
gift to football and kick in the teeth for local population, this area is already overcrowded and at the mo the football fields act as a nice barrier between welshwood park and greenstead. it would also be overlooked by lots of homes add more congestion to Harwich road which is busy enough, and put strain on the docs, schools etc and ruin salary close and have significant impact on roach vale. yes not good news for the club, and as a massive football fan shame to see but Saturday kick about vs peoples homes quality of life and house prices, its a no from me and will be letting the council know too angryman!!!
  • Score: 0

8:55am Fri 8 Feb 13

pidgee says...

some new homes there may smarten the place up and attract new people to the area. agree the traffic situation would need addressing and the local residents opinions should be considered.as far as the football side goes it would be great, played against gas many times and nice people so would be good to have a drink after. it would also be nice not to have to clear glass and needles from the pitch before a kick off.the minority spoil it.
some new homes there may smarten the place up and attract new people to the area. agree the traffic situation would need addressing and the local residents opinions should be considered.as far as the football side goes it would be great, played against gas many times and nice people so would be good to have a drink after. it would also be nice not to have to clear glass and needles from the pitch before a kick off.the minority spoil it. pidgee
  • Score: 0

11:25am Fri 8 Feb 13

angryman!!! says...

the thing is if its done up it will be more likely it will be targeted, houses over a green field id def have the field, I walk past it every day and although not exactaly paradise its nicer than cheap crammed houses, which it clearly will be given the size of the development and the size of the lad, so more social housing which if like the majority of social housing roach vale will mean more noise and trouble.
the thing is if its done up it will be more likely it will be targeted, houses over a green field id def have the field, I walk past it every day and although not exactaly paradise its nicer than cheap crammed houses, which it clearly will be given the size of the development and the size of the lad, so more social housing which if like the majority of social housing roach vale will mean more noise and trouble. angryman!!!
  • Score: 0

12:10pm Fri 8 Feb 13

Gas Rec says...

Boris we will be left a pitch to play on there's 2 gas teams and 2 Sunday teams and two childrens teams train there to and will continue to do so with this proposal. If this doesn't happen what's the alternative for Gas Rec no one is gonna come along and offer any where near this. It would end up in a lot worse state than it is we cut grass maintain building cut all the weeds at edges all at our expense it costs a lot of money before we even kick a ball. The owners could sell the land and the new owners could tell the football club to clear off. If it weren't for our chairmans great relationship with the owners we'd been out along time ago
Boris we will be left a pitch to play on there's 2 gas teams and 2 Sunday teams and two childrens teams train there to and will continue to do so with this proposal. If this doesn't happen what's the alternative for Gas Rec no one is gonna come along and offer any where near this. It would end up in a lot worse state than it is we cut grass maintain building cut all the weeds at edges all at our expense it costs a lot of money before we even kick a ball. The owners could sell the land and the new owners could tell the football club to clear off. If it weren't for our chairmans great relationship with the owners we'd been out along time ago Gas Rec
  • Score: 0

5:15pm Fri 8 Feb 13

U.T.G EDD says...

It is my opinion that this plan is the only way to tidy this piece of land up! The developers are actually only looking to build on about a third of this land and will donate the larger portion of it to colchester community! Leaving gas recreation with a football pitch and a training facility for everybody to take advantage of! Also the plan would generate finances to refurbish the site and make it safer and aesthetically better for all! I don't see colchester council finding the money to do Any of this! ( We have been asking them for over a decade to no avail!)The school would benefit too as will the local children as the plan includes a play area! Bring it on I say!!
It is my opinion that this plan is the only way to tidy this piece of land up! The developers are actually only looking to build on about a third of this land and will donate the larger portion of it to colchester community! Leaving gas recreation with a football pitch and a training facility for everybody to take advantage of! Also the plan would generate finances to refurbish the site and make it safer and aesthetically better for all! I don't see colchester council finding the money to do Any of this! ( We have been asking them for over a decade to no avail!)The school would benefit too as will the local children as the plan includes a play area! Bring it on I say!! U.T.G EDD
  • Score: 0

5:31pm Fri 8 Feb 13

U.T.G EDD says...

Oh and boris, I think you will find the Trojans were stupid to accept their gift!
And of course were at war with the Greeks! We aren't!! We are realists! Just trying to keep our facility open for the public to enjoy! If we leave this site I think you will end up with a nuisance piece of "public open space" that would be used and abused by all and sundry, we had gypsies move in there last year when we were there!!!! And had to wait for them to leave on their own accord as the authorities could do nothing!!!!! So be careful what you wish for Boris!
Oh and boris, I think you will find the Trojans were stupid to accept their gift! And of course were at war with the Greeks! We aren't!! We are realists! Just trying to keep our facility open for the public to enjoy! If we leave this site I think you will end up with a nuisance piece of "public open space" that would be used and abused by all and sundry, we had gypsies move in there last year when we were there!!!! And had to wait for them to leave on their own accord as the authorities could do nothing!!!!! So be careful what you wish for Boris! U.T.G EDD
  • Score: 0

1:59am Sat 9 Feb 13

Boris says...

Gas Rec wrote:
Boris we will be left a pitch to play on there's 2 gas teams and 2 Sunday teams and two childrens teams train there to and will continue to do so with this proposal. If this doesn't happen what's the alternative for Gas Rec no one is gonna come along and offer any where near this. It would end up in a lot worse state than it is we cut grass maintain building cut all the weeds at edges all at our expense it costs a lot of money before we even kick a ball. The owners could sell the land and the new owners could tell the football club to clear off. If it weren't for our chairmans great relationship with the owners we'd been out along time ago
If you are left with only one pitch, will it stand up to all the wear and tear from your various teams?
If planning permission for the development is refused, that will limit the value of the land. The Council could buy it and then rent it out to Gas Rec - but as UTG says, they haven't got the money for that (they have even talked about selling off part of an existing sports ground). So, what about clubbing together to buy it yourselves?
[quote][p][bold]Gas Rec[/bold] wrote: Boris we will be left a pitch to play on there's 2 gas teams and 2 Sunday teams and two childrens teams train there to and will continue to do so with this proposal. If this doesn't happen what's the alternative for Gas Rec no one is gonna come along and offer any where near this. It would end up in a lot worse state than it is we cut grass maintain building cut all the weeds at edges all at our expense it costs a lot of money before we even kick a ball. The owners could sell the land and the new owners could tell the football club to clear off. If it weren't for our chairmans great relationship with the owners we'd been out along time ago[/p][/quote]If you are left with only one pitch, will it stand up to all the wear and tear from your various teams? If planning permission for the development is refused, that will limit the value of the land. The Council could buy it and then rent it out to Gas Rec - but as UTG says, they haven't got the money for that (they have even talked about selling off part of an existing sports ground). So, what about clubbing together to buy it yourselves? Boris
  • Score: 0

11:09am Sat 9 Feb 13

Gas Rec says...

We ask all the kids that go over play on bottom pitch keep off main we put signs up they ignore already this morning the kids have messed up the pitch the quicker they build the better and fence us in we willl put CCTV up to. Never even seen a councillor up the club unless to moan about something to get there picture in the paper. Unfortunately you have to look after number 1 and that's what us a club are gonna do we're sick of working hard up there and people who shouldn't even be on there causing a nuisance to us
UTG !!
We ask all the kids that go over play on bottom pitch keep off main we put signs up they ignore already this morning the kids have messed up the pitch the quicker they build the better and fence us in we willl put CCTV up to. Never even seen a councillor up the club unless to moan about something to get there picture in the paper. Unfortunately you have to look after number 1 and that's what us a club are gonna do we're sick of working hard up there and people who shouldn't even be on there causing a nuisance to us UTG !! Gas Rec
  • Score: 0

11:24am Sat 9 Feb 13

U.T.G EDD says...

Clubbing together to buy the club isn't an option Boris first of all its not For sale, also this is not an investment opportunity! Facilities like this should never really make a profit any revenue should be ploughed back in to maintain the site! Nobody in their right mind would stump up the money to buy this without a return!! That's why the " concept plan" in my opinion is the only way! We have tried all other avenues!
Clubbing together to buy the club isn't an option Boris first of all its not For sale, also this is not an investment opportunity! Facilities like this should never really make a profit any revenue should be ploughed back in to maintain the site! Nobody in their right mind would stump up the money to buy this without a return!! That's why the " concept plan" in my opinion is the only way! We have tried all other avenues! U.T.G EDD
  • Score: 0

1:18pm Sun 10 Feb 13

angryman!!! says...

the other problem is what message does this send out, out of town developer buys land with no planning permission in an already heavily developed area then says I will build nearly 50 homes make a fortune, or I will leave it for the gypsies.
if there is any development it should be a lot smaller, same amount of space, but not cheap and nasty and overcrowded like most new estates in Colchester.
Offer the owner the going rate for a field and hand half to the gas and the half extended into welshwood.
the other problem is what message does this send out, out of town developer buys land with no planning permission in an already heavily developed area then says I will build nearly 50 homes make a fortune, or I will leave it for the gypsies. if there is any development it should be a lot smaller, same amount of space, but not cheap and nasty and overcrowded like most new estates in Colchester. Offer the owner the going rate for a field and hand half to the gas and the half extended into welshwood. angryman!!!
  • Score: 0

12:57am Mon 11 Feb 13

Boris says...

U.T.G EDD wrote:
Clubbing together to buy the club isn't an option Boris first of all its not For sale, also this is not an investment opportunity! Facilities like this should never really make a profit any revenue should be ploughed back in to maintain the site! Nobody in their right mind would stump up the money to buy this without a return!! That's why the " concept plan" in my opinion is the only way! We have tried all other avenues!
I wasn't suggesting any of you would make a profit. I only suggested you might want to put some money into keeping what you have. Once the owners know there is no chance of developing the land, why wouldn't they sell?
Think of those people who club together to buy their neighbourhood pub that would otherwise close. They don't expect to make any money out of it, but the pub is theirs. In the same way, the football ground would be yours. But if there are not enough of you that are interested, then I have no further suggestion to make.
[quote][p][bold]U.T.G EDD[/bold] wrote: Clubbing together to buy the club isn't an option Boris first of all its not For sale, also this is not an investment opportunity! Facilities like this should never really make a profit any revenue should be ploughed back in to maintain the site! Nobody in their right mind would stump up the money to buy this without a return!! That's why the " concept plan" in my opinion is the only way! We have tried all other avenues![/p][/quote]I wasn't suggesting any of you would make a profit. I only suggested you might want to put some money into keeping what you have. Once the owners know there is no chance of developing the land, why wouldn't they sell? Think of those people who club together to buy their neighbourhood pub that would otherwise close. They don't expect to make any money out of it, but the pub is theirs. In the same way, the football ground would be yours. But if there are not enough of you that are interested, then I have no further suggestion to make. Boris
  • Score: 0

10:02am Mon 11 Feb 13

wellnow says...

Seems like there is no planning for area other than leave it to deteriorate.the greeks did at least start the games we know as olympic. Not much football played then.
Seems like there is no planning for area other than leave it to deteriorate.the greeks did at least start the games we know as olympic. Not much football played then. wellnow
  • Score: 0

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