“An important first step!” Boston United to submit new ground plans in ‘January 2014’

David Newton will submit new ground plans early next year.
David Newton will submit new ground plans early next year.

Boston United are aiming to submit an application for planning permission for a new ground at the start of next year.

Chairman David Newton has confirmed that he wants to put his plans to Boston Borough Council in either January or February.

It is believed that this is the first time Newton has given a timescale with regards to relocation, and he describes the move as an ‘important first step’.

“We will look to go to public consultation around September/October time, with the aim of submitting an application around January/February 2014,” Newton wrote in his pre-season programme notes.

The Pilgrims have five years remaining on their lease at York Street, with site owners the Malkinson family looking to sell the land and unwilling to extend the deal.

However, with the club paying a reported £70,000 annual rent, Newton has already said it would be financially beneficial for United to look elsewhere.

The chairman wants to build a new ground on a site further from the town centre, and plans to help finance the construction by sharing the site with a ‘commercial partner’.

The Pilgrims have been looking to move on for the past four years and previously agreed to go into partnership with a well-known hotel company.

However, financial problems saw the firm - which wasn’t named - pull out.

Newton added: “With the poor economic conditions, it has been difficult to move things forward as quickly as we would have hoped, hence the lack of information being forthcoming.

“We are now at the point where we have an overall project that is viable, but the finance to actually deliver the project will be difficult to secure in the current climate.

“The cost of a planning application is very high.

“However, we have taken the decision to press ahead with an application as we believe that once permission is granted, the project will gain momentum and it is hoped that other commercial partners will then commit, with the neccessary finance then following.

“We also need actual planning permission before bids can be made to various funding bodies.”

Newton, the founder and managing director of Chestnut Homes, is no stranger to the world of development.

His company has previously built housing estates in the area and own many yet-to-be-developed areas of land in and around Boston.

But even that advantage doesn’t mean a new stadium can be put together swiftly.

“This is a very lengthy process and we have consultants working on the various issues that have to be addressed along the way,” Newton added.

Newton also promised to let the supporters have their say on the new stadium.

He added: “We have a few loose ends to tie up, but will give further details as soon as we can.

“We will also engage with the fanbase to try to ensure as many views as possible are taken on board during the design process of the stadium.

“We are still a long way off delivering the project, but this is an important first step.”

Boston United have played on their current York Street site - known as the Jakemans Stadium - since their inception in 1933.