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AFC Wimbledon needs £11m for Buckingham to complete stadium

27 November 2019 | By Neil Gerrard

Earthworks on Plough Lane stadium got underway in May this year (Image: AFC Wimbledon)

Wimbledon AFC has warned that it faces a shortfall of £11m needed to pay contractor Buckingham Group to complete its Plough Lane stadium.

In an announcement to supporters, the fans-owned club said it would debate options over its financing in a special meeting on 9 December.

It said: “As most of you have seen, our stadium is already taking shape. While we are totally committed to completing the project, we are also about to reach a point of no return. Our constructors need a financial commitment from us by January to enable them to complete the final phases and instruct their own sub-contractors.

“As it stands at the moment, we are unable to make that commitment. Because of unforeseen planning delays and increased building costs, we will need to raise a further £11million to complete the stadium as we all want it to be, with income-generating conference and banqueting facilities, an additional 5000 covered seats through semi-permanent stands and a showpiece fans’ zone.”

The League One club will now have to decide whether it borrows all of the money it needs and shoulder itself with costly repayments, changes the scope of the project and builds only the main west stand and abandons three others as well as conference and banqueting facilities, a shop and hospitality facilities, or accepts offers of investment from private investors.

Earthworks for the 9,000-capacity stadium, which the club hopes eventually to be able to expand to 20,000 by connecting all four corners between stands, began in May this year. In July, the club predicted that the overall cost of the project would be £30m. The main west stand will have four tiers, media facilities, and 12 executive boxes as well as additional facilities but in its most recent statement the club warned that if it built only what it could afford, the stand would just be a “basic shell”.

Buckingham Group has been contacted for comment.

Comments

As a Brighton fan I wish AFCWimbledon all the best and look forward to visiting your new ground when complete until then can I suggest the supporters get the buckets out to all the grounds all the clubs I am sure we can help make a dent in the £11 million

Colin, 4 December 2019

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