Crunch time for football in the town
Camrose Planning Applications set for Decision
Rafi Razzak’s Basron Developments’ controversial planning applications come before the council for decision on Wednesday 23 September. The two separate applications cover 85 flats and a 70 room care home.
The bad news for supporters of the town’s community football club and other opponents of the plan is that the independent planning officer recommendation is to approve the proposals subject to ‘legal agreement’.
This refers to a section 106 agreement whereby to achieve planning approval Basron must agree to meeting the Camrose replacement cost of equivalent or
The understandable fear of the community is that Basron will be offered a cut price deal, falling well short of true like for like spend on providing a brand new site (land acquisition, floodlights, necessary structures, car parking etc.)
Terry Brown, community club chairman, said ‘We shall be opposing in principle the loss of an iconic Stadium and community hub and building plans that do nothing for South Ham and will lead to a road through the Camrose.’
Brown continues “It would be scandalous if approval was granted with Basron required to pay under the odds. Such an approach would put Mr Razzak on the wrong side of history and be an invitation to others to grab sports land for profit – it’s setting a precedent and this town cannot afford to have our name attached to it. We would hope that Mr Razzak would ensure the Club he continually claims to love is properly supported.’
With COVID-19 restrictions in place, the Development Control Committee (comprising borough councillors) will be held by Zoom, which fails to offer the opportunity for opponents to show their solidarity against the proposals. Up to five objectors will be given speaking rights, but with time on each application restricted a total of just 4 minutes for all objectors combined.
This is a big moment for the club and for the wider sporting community. This decision will impact generations of young people, communities and sport within the town.
History will be watching.