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Statement from the FC United board re Cheadle re-arrangement

Statement from the FC United board re Cheadle re-arrangement

The late cancellation of our cup game away at Cheadle has clearly frustrated the club and its supporters therefore the Board would like to explain to it’s fans the ’timeline’ of events.

Club representatives visited Cheadle’s ground a number of weeks ago when we raised a number of safety concerns with Cheadle about hosting the match there and suggested that an alternative venue be found. The owners of Stockport County’s ground were consulted but as Sale Sharks had a game on the Friday our match would have to be played on the Sunday and even then the cost was considered to be too expensive.

FC United officials were told that Cheadle had consulted with the safety authorities and the Stockport police and informed them of the arrangements that had been put in place. We were told that both the police and the safety authorities were happy for the game to go ahead but that the capacity was to be limited to 2000 with the match being be all ticket and Cheadle arranging the sale of all tickets themselves.

The idea of erecting a temporary stand was discussed, which would have allowed more supporters to gain access, but it was agreed that this would be too expensive.

At this stage the Board had no reason to doubt the game would go ahead as planned and did not wish to exert undue pressure on Cheadle, as it was after all their fixture and responsibility.

The Club were then informed on Friday 7th October at 1pm that the League itself had visited Cheadle the previous day and had established that safety officers had not signed the match off. It was on this basis the League insisted on it being played elsewhere.

FC United officials immediately entered discussions with Cheadle to try and find a suitable, alternative ground. Stockport County was again considered as was the possibility of moving the match to Gigg Lane. We made it clear that we required an agreed alternative by close of business that same afternoon so that we could inform our supporters. At approx 4.30pm Cheadle informed us we would be playing at Curzon Ashton on Monday 17th October.

This has clearly been a frustrating episode for the club and its supporters and the club has expressed its disquiet to Cheadle and the League. But we should also recognise that many teams at our level have never before experienced the logistical difficulties our large support brings. It is as new to them as it is to the rest of us. We have to some extent remain patient with other clubs as they strive to make the best of these situations. We will however be having further discussions with league officials to ensure that a proper risk assessment is made prior to venues and kick off times are announced.

All tickets previously sold for this fixture are valid, anyone who cannot make the revised date should write to Cheadle Town who will give a full refund.

It is recommended that your tickets are sent to Cheadle by recorded delivery and that you enclose a stamped self-addressed envelope.

FC United are aware that some supporters may have incurred travel costs connected with the original date. Any supporters who have incurred such costs that are not recoverable directly, should in the first instance write to FC United at 104 Ducie House, Ducie Street Manchester M1 2JW enclosing full details including copies of any receipts so that we can pursue reimbursement on your behalf.

FC United officials are due to meet with Cheadle Town and Curzon Ashton officials early next week after which we expect to be making a further announcement regarding extra tickets.

Details of Curzon Ashton’s ground can be found at:

http://www.curzon-ashton.co.uk/New%20Stadium/Tameside%20Stadium.htm

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First Posted ~ 10:43 Mon 10 Oct 2005
News ID ~ 105
Last Updated ~ 18:53 Tue 1 Mar 2011