Champion Hill: Proposed Ground Redevelopment

Discussion in 'Dulwich Hamlet FC' started by Fingers, Aug 26, 2015.

  1. BrandNewGuy

    BrandNewGuy Well-Known Member

    Liam's programme notes yesterday contained an update about Champion Hill:
    "... I am pleased to confirm that Meadow have agreed to meet with the club's Directors in September. I am also verbally advised, and have been promised a letter, that all the money owed to them shown in our accounts has been written off..."
    "... the club is a victim of a stand-off between the council and Meadow, both of whom don't want to blink. They can't even seem to agree that they want arbitration."

    I'm not sure about this last point. I appreciate that Liam will know a lot more about the situation than those of us 'on the outside', but it seems to me that there's not much that the council can currently do with regard to Meadow, apart from looking to pursue potential compulsory purchase. The situation is that Meadow withdrew their planning appeals (for the planning application and the overturning of the covenants) and ceded the lease on Green Dale back to the council. So as far as the council is concerned, what have they currently got to talk about with Meadow? There was that artist's impression thing from Meadow the other month which went along with a promise of a new planning application, but before that happens, the council have got nothing to go on, as it were. A 'pre-planning application letter' is about as useless as a 'memorandum of understanding' as far as I'm concerned...
    Of course, I expect the council to be active in talking to the club about what it can do to help, but that doesn't directly relate to the 'stand-off' with Meadow.
    As fans, is there anything we can do to help try to get matters resolved?
    Dirty South likes this.
  2. Pink Panther

    Pink Panther Well-Known Member

    Maybe he's just being diplomatic in not apportioning the blame entirely to Meadow? There's no point right now in the club doing or saying anything that might complicate the formal writing off of the alleged debt or jeopardise the possibility of getting back to Champion Hill without having to wait for a CPO.

    Meadow seem to have a Trump-like combination of bullying aggression and reacting with petulance and spite to anyone who dares to criticise or stand up to them. Dealing with them seems a bit like having to outwit a difficult child by saying or doing the things that will achieve the desired result rather than just following your instincts and saying what you really think.
    BrandNewGuy and editor like this.
  3. Pink Panther

    Pink Panther Well-Known Member

    Just to add to my previous post, reading between the lines, I suspect Meadow realise they've backed themselves into a corner, seriously pissed off a lot of people as well as turning the neutrals against them, that their name is mud, and are now willing to compromise in order to manoeuvre their way out as long as they don't lose too much face.

    Of course they won't have the humility to come clean, hold their hands up, and admit that. I personally will always regard them with utter contempt, as will most of our supporters I'm sure. However, as long as we don't stick the boot into them I suspect it may be possible to find a way of getting back to Champion Hill within months rather than years. Maybe that will entail a housing development on the car park in conjunction with Meadow? My first instinct is to tell them to go to hell and stick it out at Mitcham for as long as it takes, but if we have to massage their ego a little to get back home sooner ....

    None of this is based on conversion with anyone within the club, it's pure conjecture from digesting what has been put into the public domain.
  4. BrandNewGuy

    BrandNewGuy Well-Known Member

    That's exactly what I've felt since their plans fell apart. Meadow needs an 'exit strategy' that sees them not losing face — they are ruthless people who rely on reputation and front. Having said which, they could have taken the offer involving Rio and made themselves a tidy profit, if what was publicised was approximately the case. My feeling also is that they gambled on the club going under very soon after being evicted. That hasn't happened and, fingers crossed, with the new investor money coming through and the generosity of our fellow clubs, it won't happen. And a stand-off is the last thing they needed.
  5. Monkeygrinder's Organ

    Monkeygrinder's Organ Dodgy geezer swilling vapid lager

    All sensible points above.

    I think one thing that is worth thinking about is what our response will be in the event Meadow come back with some sort of revised plan still combining a ground at Champion Hill and flats. If that is their thinking then they will definitely try and leverage fans support - do we wait and see the details or do we think they've totally lost any credibility now? I'd find it hard to support anything they put forward tbh whatever they promised.
  6. Lucy Fur

    Lucy Fur Well-Known Member

    Would that be a Committee decision? Indeed would there be any attempt to canvas supporters votes. I would find it nigh on impossible to trust anything meadows has to offer in the future, but I'm not sure if my opinion will actually count for anything.
  7. iamwithnail

    iamwithnail Well-Known Member

    Vehemently against working with or supporting anything meadows does, unless it's walking away and giving us the ground back. Once a basket of snakes, always a basket of snakes.
    Last edited: Aug 14, 2018
    HELVETICVS, clog, Jimbob73 and 4 others like this.
  8. Latahs

    Latahs Well-Known Member

    Indeed, I'm as keen as anyone to get back to CH but what's to stop an exact repeat of the nonsense with cleaners' bills, rent and bar takings etc. etc. - surely it'd be back to square one. That's in the short term, as the stadium offered in the new proposal was also well short of what we need.

    Given the last two games could we project exactly how sustainable are we at Tooting? Could we lose say 5%, 10% or 15% of gate takings- based on the previous seasons- and still be sustainable? and over what period?
    iamwithnail and blueheaven like this.
  9. BrandNewGuy

    BrandNewGuy Well-Known Member

    Quite apart from losing all credibility with the club, DHST and the fans, they no longer have any say over Green Dale, which is back in the council's control. So all they can do – as they did in that 'pre-planning' letter they wrote recently – is suggest that the council might like to put the stadium there. Which is not going to happen as it was the main reason for the failure of the original planning application.

    All that this new 'proposal' does compared to the previous planning application is increase the number of 'affordable' units, by increasing the size of the development and reducing the size of the units. But it still doesn't address the covenants which protect the current pitch site from being used for anything other than sport and recreation. Nor will it address the question of 'massing' which the council also objected to in terms of the development's sheer size. So their latest suggestions offer absolutely nothing to the council, the club or the local area. I can only think they're going down this path just to string everything out as long as possible.
    Radical-Cliff likes this.
  10. liamdhfc

    liamdhfc Well-Known Member

    I think it is fair to say that without significant investment from outside that we are not sustainable in The National League at Tooting.
    Radical-Cliff likes this.
  11. blueheaven

    blueheaven Well-Known Member

    I've been thinking this too - if Meadow and the club meet in September and, hypothetically, Meadow say they're willing to let the club come back and play at Champion Hill, is that really an offer the club could accept without a huge amount of suspicion? We could so easily end up back in the situation with Meadow inventing debts etc. And again it would only take another falling out for them to close the gates on us once again. To me it seems inconceivable that the club could possibly go back to CH for as long as Meadow are still there - the club would be existing with a noose around its neck that Meadow could tighten at any time it chooses.

    What I'd like to know is:
    - Why has the Government's promise of mediation not happened, and what can we do as fans to make this happen?
    - Given that the council's offer to Meadow was quite some time ago now, and Meadow continues to ignore it, why has the council not put the wheels in motion for a CPO?

    One thing I'm sure of is that, as a fan, there is absolutely zero chance I will ever support any proposal Meadow come forward with. They cannot be trusted under any circumstances.
    Lucy Fur likes this.
  12. Pink Panther

    Pink Panther Well-Known Member

    It would certainly need some very watertight legally binding guarantees regarding our security of tenure and right to manage our own matchday arrangements, i.e. Meadow run the bars and we manage everything else. We can't have them calling all the shots and moving the goalposts every other week like they did before.

    I think we'd all like some more clarity on this front.

    I will certainly never support any further Meadow proposal that involves demolishing the current ground. If there's a chance of coming to an arrangement to develop the car park as per Southwark Council's CPO proposal and Meadow sell the freehold to the Council or whatever as part of that, great, but I won't be signing any petitions or writing letters of support as I and many other supporters did at the outset of the Hadley/Meadow era.

    At the end of the day I want us back at Champion Hill ASAP, but it has to be on terms that are favourable and beneficial to our club without leaving us in limbo again.

    Meadow OUT.
  13. editor

    editor Forked with electrons

    I refused to sign any petitions or write any letters of support for Meadow because I know what property developers are like. They'll say anything to fill their fat pockets with more cash.
    HELVETICVS, clog, DanBrown and 2 others like this.
  14. Pink Panther

    Pink Panther Well-Known Member

    I was always sceptical about Meadow's pitch that the club couldn't survive financially in the current ground and it was essential to have the proposed new one. I somewhat half-heartedly lent support on an "ends justify the means" basis and now feel like I've been well and truly "had". I won't make the same mistake again.

    It's not the flawed design, lack of reinvestment under previous regimes and large overheads of the current ground that are the problem. It's the bastards who've used the club and lied to us for the last four years who are the problem. With a secure lease and the freehold in the hands of responsible people who don't have an ulterior motive I'm sure we would be fine.
  15. Dulwich Mishi

    Dulwich Mishi Old Skool Terrace Dinosaur-embracing the new-veau!

    Get anything in writing and legally binding this time.... There was no agreement in writing regarding them having options on shares, the only signed thing, I think, was the Trust's Memoradum of Understanding, or whatever it was called, as fas as I'm aware.
    The Club (as in Limited Company) are much more savvy this time, and have top notch legal representation, which has forced Meadow to back down on a number of things, so I think things will be much more in the club's favour when they finally get sorted.
  16. pitchfork

    pitchfork Well-Known Member

  17. Pink Panther

    Pink Panther Well-Known Member

    How sadly ironic that this should occur only a six-hit from where the Hamlet have been forced to play.

    Incidentally Burnett Wedlake Bullock was the father of Bunny Bullock, a Hamlet player in the 1950s. Burn Bullock was probably a sort of Mitcham CC equivalent to our own Edgar Kail in the 1920s, although he just played a few games for Surrey as opposed to winning a few England caps
  18. BrandNewGuy

    BrandNewGuy Well-Known Member

    Someone's just posted on the East Dulwich Forum that the pitch at Champion Hill is being mowed. No idea if there's any significance to this.
    Dirty South likes this.
  19. EDC

    EDC A Slightly Less Invisible Cyber Fan These Days

    Getting the hay ready before it’s too late?
    darryl, Cyclodunc, Nivag and 2 others like this.
  20. pitchfork

    pitchfork Well-Known Member

    Right what is going on? We’ve had the protesting, support from government, local and national and now what?

    It feels like it is just drifting, no word from Southwark, Meadow or the Sports Minister.

    When is the meeting taking place between the club and Meadow and what is the agenda for that meeting?
  21. editor

    editor Forked with electrons

    This is exactly what those prize cunts Meadow want. We need to organise something to ramp up the pressure. Even a big photogenic banner at the next home games would help.
  22. alcopop

    alcopop Banned Banned

    How about a chant?
  23. Lucy Fur

    Lucy Fur Well-Known Member

    got any suggestions?
  24. editor

    editor Forked with electrons

    Troll this forum at your peril.
    B.I.G likes this.
  25. B.I.G

    B.I.G Well-Known Member

    Talking of chants - whoever started the chant at half time in the playoff final should be very pleased with themselves. A very emphatic denouncement of Meadow.
  26. alcopop

    alcopop Banned Banned

    Hey hey
    Ho ho
    Meadow has got to go


    How’s that?
  27. editor

    editor Forked with electrons

    I've got a better one:

    Hey Trollin' Chuck
    Off you fuck.

    *poster now banned from this thread
    Lucy Fur and Pink Panther like this.
  28. Cyclodunc

    Cyclodunc Where's the slam tent, mate?

    what for?
  29. B.I.G

    B.I.G Well-Known Member

    Being a prick interloper that isn’t interested in DHFC.
    editor and Pink Panther like this.
  30. Matt The Cab

    Matt The Cab Live it like you love it

    Careful, you've be warned about your behaviour & and abusive language before :hmm:

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