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Last day: back stadium bid

10 August 2016

Send your submission to the Mayor about new stadium

Fourteen former Wimbledon players and managers have signed an open letter backing London Mayor Sadiq Khan’s proposal to return the planning decision on the new stadium plans to Merton Council.

Today is the final chance for you to join them in supporting our stadium bid.

  http://bringthedonshome.org/extra-time/Fans can make a submission online via   .

Managerial legends Dave Bassett, who took the original Wimbledon FC into the First Division, and Bobby Gould, who brought the FA Cup back to SW19, said: “We were dismayed when the former Mayor of London called in the club’s planning application for a new stadium in Wimbledon and so we welcome the Mayor’s suggestion to return the decision to Merton Council following a short consultation.”

They were joined as signatories in the letter by former players Dave Beasant, Terry Gibson, Wally Downes, Dickie Guy, Ian Cooke, Kevin Gage, John Scales, Neil Sullivan, Jason Euell, Chris Perry and Vinnie Jones.

The group concluded: “We believe that the return of AFC Wimbledon to a stadium in Plough Lane will restore the club’s long and proud football history in the borough of Merton, be a catalyst for the regeneration of the local area, and enable them to build on their already impressive community work. In short, it is time the Dons came home to Plough Lane.”

Another former Crazy Gang era playing star agreed with former team-mates and called on fans to leave the Mayor and the GLA in no doubt about the widespread support for the proposal. Current AFC Wimbledon manager Neal Ardley made 245 appearances for Wimbledon FC before returning to lead the reborn club into League One via the play-offs at Wembley last May.

Ardley said: “It would be brilliant to start our first season back in the third tier with some good news off the pitch. This latest consultation could be the final stage of the process, so I hope all our fans are writing to the GLA in support of returning the decision about the ground to Merton Council.”

Club chief executive, Erik Samuelson, added: “Our updated advice is for everyone who backs our stadium proposal to write to the GLA in support of the Mayor’s proposal to return the authority for the planning decision to Merton.

“We know that our fanbase and a lot of supporters of other clubs have been brilliant in their efforts in every stage of the planning process so far, but we need their help for one final time.”

The consultation process runs until 10 August (today) as the GLA consider whether to return the authority for the planning decision to Merton Council. Sadiq Khan has indicated he is considering overturning his predecessor Boris Johnson’s decision to ‘call in’ the application, which was taken against the explicit advice of the GLA’s own planning officers.

We would also like to thank various celebrities and sports people for backing the campaign. Michael Vaughan, Mark Wood, Alec Stewart, Brian Moore, John Green and Mumford & Sons, to name a few, have all publicly backed the #BringTheDonsHome campaign on Twitter.


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