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Council's Search Begins

By: Rob Sedgwick
Date: 08/08/2000

Council's Search Begins

News from 28th July 2000

New ground

The council on Thursday night voted by 24 to 3, with one abstention, to appoint consultants to review the availability and suitability of sites for the relocation of Grimsby Town football club and the associated retail development.
Several North East Lincolnshire councillors who has voted against the move to building a new stadium at Great Coates were amongst the most vocal supporters of the search for an alternative site.

The motion was proposed by Coun Alec Wallace, and seconded by Steve Norton (Lab, Grimsby), who

originally opposed the plan for the stadium to be built inside his Great Coates ward.

Coun Norton said: "I doubt if there is anyone here tonight who does not support the initiative to assist GTFC in their quest for a new ground.

"I do and have always done so. It's most unfortunate that the events of the past two weeks have not reflected the spirit and purpose of the decision taken at the last meeting."

Coun Norton went on the list the benefits of the proposed scheme. The benefits he listed included attracting a multi-million pound investment at no cost to the council, and creating new jobs. The project would act, he said, as a catalyst to attract further inward investment and inspire renewed confidence in the local economy.

"Let's go forward with an aggressive timetable so we can consider the options, make a decision and allow this development to proceed within its original timetable," he added.

Bill Parkinson (Con, Cleethorpes) also backed the scheme, claiming Grimsby generated more publicity around the country by having a First Division club than by anything else.

Liberal Democrat leader Coun Andrew De Freitas said he was worried about the proposal because of its mention of the word retail, since he had consistently opposed out of town shopping centres.

Suggesting the council's planning officers compile a review rather than appoint an external consultant, he did not oppose an urban relocation.

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