Field of our dreams - hopes new use for Garfits Lane will improve facility

Garfits Lane playing field. Lee Vacey EMN-170910-103055001
Garfits Lane playing field. Lee Vacey EMN-170910-103055001

The manager of a local football club has said the use of the playing field his side calls home by Boston United ‘can only help the site’.

Lee Vacey, manager of Railway Athletic, which trains on Garfits Lane, in Boston, said he hoped the licence of the site – which will see it used by United’s community teams – may bring some ‘much-needed investment’.

Mr Vacey said: “I’ve had a lot of chats with the people who run Boston in the Community, I think it can only help the site.

“The changing rooms are currently very unloved, leaking ceilings etc and I feel that with BUFC on board they may look after this better.

“Also, because it has youth teams now, not just a local league side, it may get some much needed investment.

“I am already aware the pitches are going to be improved and they do need some investment.

“In my opinion it’s a local park and we should be supporting its use, especially for youth teams etc.

“It originally had lottery investment so should be used, which is why it’s a shame that up until now it’s a little unloved.

“Until we formed Railway Athletic it wasn’t used for local league football, so we’re also hoping we’re the start of further use”

Developers Chestnut Homes confirmed the new use of Garfits Lane for their community football teams, but said it had ‘nothing to do with The Quadrant plans’.

The news was revealed following a Boston Borough Council meeting last week according to a caller to The Standard – a council spokesman confirmed the issue had been discussed outside of official proceedings, but would not go into further details.

Following the story’s publication, the council did, however, clarify the arrangement was a licence not a lease.

A spokesman said: “A lease transfers a legal interest in land through a contractual agreement between a landlord and tenant (and includes exclusive possession). We are not using leases for these arrangements,

“We use a licence which does not transfer any legal interest in land but gives access to occupy/use the property for specified periods of time and use.”

They have also clarified that the licence was for three-years at a cost of £1,500 per year, not £15,000 for one year as was originally reported by MP for Boston and Skegness Matt Warman.

Managing Director of Chestnut Homes and chairman of Boston United David Newton has also confirmed the arrangements.

He said: “After lengthy negotiations with Boston Borough Council, we can confirm that Boston United’s Community Foundation will be utilising the football pitches at Garfit’s Lane Playing Fields for their community football teams.

“Other teams and the public who use the site will still be able to do so. The licence arrangements will ensure that this community facility is put to really good use.”

He said there would be no changes to public access and that Chestnut Homes would be responsible for the facilities upkeep.

The reports sparked concerns over the future building of the new Boston United Community Stadium.

However, a spokesman for Chestnut Homes said the news ‘has nothing to do with The Quadrant and the New Stadium’.

l Please note, a version of this story in The Standard earlier stated that MP Matt Warman had confirmed an arrangement for one year and for £15,000. Although this was correct, the clarification from the council yesterday (Tuesday) was that it was for £1,500 and for three years. Although last minute edits were made to the story the final version of the story did not appear within the paper. We apologise for any confusion.