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Louis

Public Inquiry Now Over

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Closing submissions:

 

Applicants

 

Knowsley Council - link

Tesco/Everton - not up yet

 

Opponents

 

KEIOC - link

KRAG - link

Kirkby Traders - link

Liverpool Council - link

Other Councils - link

 

Decision expected in June! It looks like a dead duck to me despite the latest statement from the club:

 

Kirkby Move Still On For 2011

 

Everton remain confident a new stadium in Kirkby can be ready for the start of the 2011/2012 season.

 

That is the message from Chief Executive Robert Elstone following news the report into the Kirkby Inquiry, which closed today after 36 days of evidence, is unlikely to be presented to the Secretary of State until June.

 

That means a final decision on whether the Destination Kirkby project can go ahead will not be forthcoming until the eve of the 2009/10 Premier League season. A final decision had been expected later in the Spring.

 

However, Mr Elstone believes that, despite the delay, a new stadium can be completed in time for the start of the 2011/12 season.

 

He told evertonfc.com: "We're very happy with the way the inquiry went and feel we were represented very well. I was impressed with the work done by the other members of the partnership.

 

"We answered some tough questions in impressive fashion and, in the course of doing that, were able to put right some misconceptions that had emerged. Throughout this process we have been keen to stress there is an urgent need to move and also a unique opportunity in the sense that Kirkby is here and now - that is something which makes this project so special not just for Everton but also for the people of Kirkby.

 

"On that basis, and with the news today it may well be June before the inspector can finalise the report, we have to be certain we can hit the ground running to achieve a 2011 start date for the completed stadium.

 

"That means we will continue to push on with the project development so Everton can fulfill our side of the bargain as part of the partnership. We will be discussing in more detail the timetable with our partners with a view to seeing if there is any way the decision can be accelerated.

 

"But I am confident that the powers that be are aware of how important timing is to the overall project."

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What's the deal here? Why were there no replies in over a day?

 

Have people just written the Kirkby stadium off as a no-go zone and block out any stadium news?

 

The counsel for Sefton, St Helens and West Lancashire said this about the proposal:

 

It is rare indeed to be confronted by a proposal that fails every test that it should properly be measured against. That is even before any weight is attached to the local issues of detrimental impact on amenity. This indicates that the proposal is so fundamentally misconceived that on any weighing of the issues the scales must come down conclusively against the proposal.

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What's the deal here? Why were there no replies in over a day?

 

Think everyone's had their say Louis, we pretty much know (among regular members) where we all stand.

 

You've put a lot of time and energy into the process but for the rest of us it's now about politics.

 

I'm sure once the decision is announced there'll be a lot of debate but currently it's out of everyone's hands.

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Ah, so there has been a plan B all along :rolleyes:

 

Robert Elstone recently said - "Plan B would be to re-evaluate what we have at Goodison and make largely cosmetic changes for very marginal gains."

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What's the deal here? Why were there no replies in over a day?

 

Have people just written the Kirkby stadium off as a no-go zone and block out any stadium news?

 

The counsel for Sefton, St Helens and West Lancashire said this about the proposal:

 

Louis, you know what will happen lots or arguements then lots of off topic discussion.

If it doesn't go ahead then I hope Kirkby continues to rot - in a way there have shot themselves in the foot. How else is the area going to get any investment for improvement?

 

Oh and on LCC comments, this one pisses me off:

© The issue is not whether it would be desirable for Everton Football Club to have a new stadium (another apparent “good thing”) but whether the Club’s current ambition, driven by their present financial model and ownership, justifies public support for a proposal that is so at odds with the regional and local planning framework.

 

Translates to "Liverpool FC is our cash cow".

You can hear the desperation in some LCC comments that they don't want to loose Everton FC but at the same time they won't bend over backwards for us. **Anticipates the usual LCC are not that bad comments**

 

Did I read KEIOC comments...no. (That's no suprise though).

 

Let the arguments begin...

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"Relevant" section of Everton barrister's summary...

 

1. The need for the club to move is an important component of the regenerative impetus. It has been in existence since 1878 and whatever the disagreements at the inquiry it is clear from such as Mr Elstone, KEIOC and others, that it is a proud club. It has had many years of success and has played the most games in the highest divisions of English football. It is a club which historically has been prepared to adapt and grasp modernity. It was host to World Cup games at Goodison Park 43 years ago because they had up to date facilities - a description which cannot be applied now.

 

2. It is a truism that a football club like any other business is not isolated from modern commercial pressures. EFC and its business at Goodison Park, in simple economic terms, depend on adequacy of ‘production goods' in the team and the stadium which will drive the success or otherwise of the club. Success is judged by what is achieved on the pitch and whether a sufficient number of spectators have an experience which is good enough to make them return, and also to attract others. If neither is achieved the club will atrophy over time and that is a course none seriously can wish. There is concern over the cycle of decline. Lack of investment or opportunity to invest means that the club will reduce its effectiveness.

 

3. Combined with that is the general planning approach that it is desirable that a recreational experience which is enjoyed by large numbers of the public should be located, presented and managed in a manner which is adequate and sustainable. That is not unique to EFC but has prevailed to allow Liverpool FC to plan a move into a new stadium in historic Stanley Park. The advantages overwhelmed the disadvantages in the public interest. Other clubs have undertaken recent moves elsewhere in the country.

 

4. Whenever any club is to move it will be beset by financial issues of affordability. Football clubs perhaps have a different business model to other commerce. Many boards are composed of enthusiasts who are prepared to put up their money to fund the club in one form or another with little or no material return and who are prepared to accept that close involvement with the hoped for success of their passion is dividend enough.

 

5. Somehow that has been the currency of many clubs for many years and EFC is no exception historically and currently. Some clubs have been sold to highly affluent investors from overseas. They are a finite band particularly, it is reasonable to assume, in the current financial market. They are not necessarily a panacea for resolving money problems since they too have to raise money and service the debt. Nevertheless as Mr Elstone told, since Mr Kenwright became Chairman in 2004 the club, like many, has been for sale. Nobody has been appointed to sell the club and to the knowledge of the CEO there is no buyer for the club.

6. The decision should be taken on the basis that the club's financial structure will continue as it is currently - unable to fund a move to a new stadium or indeed a rebuild of a current stadium without subsidy from another source.

7. Thereafter it is a specious suggestion that EFC should stay where they are or that they are trying to steal a march on their competitors by constructing a stadium they cannot afford. That is Luddite business planning of ‘do nothing and it will be alright'. On the contrary, as above, EFC are investing in the future like any business by raising finance for a stadium which will provide one of the best customer experiences in the country (and indeed as good as Wembley if not better). The new stadium will serve the existing season ticket holders given that 75% of the current holders live within 12 miles which is 1% more than for Goodison Park.

 

8. Perhaps the inconsistency of the opposition approach at the inquiry is typical of the general position on football clubs and football stadia. Everyone is an expert. Like all self - appointed experts they cannot agree. Some suggest a smaller stadium and some a larger. Some accede to a move, others do not. Whatever, the conclusion is invited that Goodison Park is inadequate. That has not appeared to be controversial.

 

9. Mr Skempton for KEIOC told Mr Keirle that GP is a "horrible experience for non football fans" and he suggested that revealed ‘a gender imbalance' which should be addressed. Mr Skempton's views are on behalf of KEIOC but an objective view can corroborate it to some extent when the following indicative characteristics are addressed:

i. Lack of capacity and opportunity for expansion;

ii. Spectator viewing experience with 53% of the stadium having obstructed views;

iii. Corporate facilities well below those of competitor clubs; and

iv. Concourse facilities constrained and underprovided.

 

10. That is confirmed by the Premier League Fans Survey which make gloomy reading for the club since it is only in the category of quality and range of food and drink that the club is removed from around the bottom of the league and that must be because they are not dependent on the stadium but the skill of the staff.

 

11. The decision has been taken to move and EFC have been looking for more than 10 years during which nothing has matured into a solution and the Goodison Park stadium conditions have got worse, particularly in comparison with its peers. The decision was not taken without the approbation of supporters and shareholders. There were three ballots and an EGM to address the issue. All concluded in favour of a move. Mr Elstone described a unique set of circumstances which will enable EFC to provide a new stadium which is affordable and deliverable.

 

12. The search was explained by Mr Potts, and the DPP work corroborated it by looking even wider to satisfy the requirements of environmental assessment. No site is seriously suggested by those trawls. The following conclusions are invited:

i. The site must be big enough to do the job of accommodating a stadium for 50,000 spectators with the possibility of 60,000 to modern standards of concourse and approaches;

ii. There is no site in Liverpool City as has been shown by the Council being satisfied by LFC on three occasions, including 2008, that there was no alternative to Stanley Park;

iii. No site out with the City is seriously proffered before the inquiry;

iv. PPS 17 requires that a stadium should be close to transportation facilities;

v. It is not an issue ultimately for decision whether it is right for EFC to move. None can require them to stay. The decision is whether or not the location is appropriate for a new stadium; and

vi. EFC must be in a position to afford the stadium. Mr Elstone revealedhow they think they can proceed and what they can afford. It is cautious and not excessive. At £130m it is substantially less ambitious than Liverpool FC's budget of £350m of which Mr Burchnall told he had never seen a financial appraisal.

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The Cost to Everton for this stadium is rising every time someone from GP makes a statement. :blink:

 

It started off at £50 million, the last i heard it had gone up to £78 million, and now Elstone says it will cost 130 million ffs.

 

I'm sure they can re-develop GP for that amount.

 

 

"its the deal of the century bones, but not as we know it". ;)

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To be honest there are a few errors in the Tesco/EFC QC's closing statement. They've been reported to the case officer.

 

Most obvious examples are about the club being for sale (http://www.liverpoolecho.co.uk/everton-fc/...00252-22030290/)is what Trevor Skempton is alleged to have said, it was the other way around, that is what Mr Keirle told Trevor Skempton.

 

Robert Elstone repeated some of the QC's claims on the official site today.

 

Bill, it's apparently still £78m (£130m is 'value' with the £52m subsidy)

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But Tesco came out and said that EFC would'nt receive any money, the £52 million was what it cost Tesco to purchase the land. ??? or am i missing something here. :huh:

 

If anybody thinks we can get a new purpose built stadium for the money thats being quoted, they are in for a mighty shock.

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But Tesco came out and said that EFC would'nt receive any money, the £52 million was what it cost Tesco to purchase the land. ??? or am i missing something here. :huh:

 

The truth is that no one knows for certain, the public inquiry was left in the dark over the funding.

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if it goes a head with out the authorities knowing where the money is coming from would be very strange.

whether the stadium costs 78m or 130m, that is not enough for a world class stadium, to be honest, that prob wouldnt even get you an average one in this day and age.

eastlands opened in 2002, back then it cost £110m, holding less than 50,000. seven years later, what can £130m do?

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if it goes a head with out the authorities knowing where the money is coming from would be very strange.

whether the stadium costs 78m or 130m, that is not enough for a world class stadium, to be honest, that prob wouldnt even get you an average one in this day and age.

eastlands opened in 2002, back then it cost £110m, holding less than 50,000. seven years later, what can £130m do?

 

No it wouldn't. Liverpool's Stanley Park application was granted without a full financial assessment for funding the project.

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