‘Community club’ hopes to fill Badgers void

Who will take over Coronation Park?
Who will take over Coronation Park?

A new community football club is hoping to be chosen to take over Eastwood Town FC’s Coronation Park and bring the sport back to the town.

The similarly-named Eastwood Town Community Football Club has been founded by several people involved in the now liquidated Eastwood Town FC, with the plan to be up and running in time for the 2014-15 season.

That will all depend on whether Broxtowe Borough Council chooses the club to take over the tenancy of Coronation Park, with that particular decision set to take place over the coming days.

George Barnes, a former director of Eastwood Town FC who is involved in the creation of the new entity, says much of the framework is in place for the club to get started quickly, should it be chosen to move into Coronation Park.

He said: “Bids to take over the ground need to be with the Notts FA on Friday (6th) and they will then be taken to the council for consideration, who I think are quite keen for a swift resolution as the ground is getting into disrepair.

“We’ve had a good business plan put together and several people are on board who were involved with the old club.

“The council are keen for the ground to be taken on by a community club and not one that will be run by single benefactors as was the case for the last few years of Eastwood Town.

“The plans we have will mean nobody is paid, not even the bar staff. We’ll all be taking various courses that will mean we can run the bar and the catering and so on, and the players will have amateur status.”

Mr Barnes says the club has been offered a place in the Central Midlands League South Division, three levels below where Eastwood Town FC played last season. Local rivals Hucknall Town are among those currently in that division.

It is understood the club will be ready to play matches from August onwards, with coaching staff and players already being approached.

Mr Barnes added: “We’ll be having a meeting next Tuesday night where, if we’ve been successful, we’ll be deciding on the way forward and putting proper plans in place, including ways people can help out financially.

“We’re hoping to get a 10-15 year lease on the ground as we’ll need that in order to apply for various grants that will help us move forward.

“The ground still needs some work but that will get done in due course, and although we have to give a month’s notice to start the clubhouse up again I anticipate that should happen during July.”