Dulwich Hamlet have announced that they are to finally return to Champion Hill after reaching an agreement and the conclusion of successful talks between the club, Southwark Council and Meadow Partners.
The National League South side, who were forced out of the ground back in March, have said they expect the work required to prepare the ground to take 4-6 weeks and will announce the date of the first home fixture in the near future.
To play the rest of the 2017/18 and the 2018/19 home matches, they have been ground-sharing with Tooting & Mitcham United.
Dulwich Hamlet Football Club and Dulwich Hamlet Supporters’ Trust announce the club’s return to Champion Hill
— Dulwich Hamlet FC (@DulwichHamletFC) October 23, 2018
The club statement read: “DHFC has approached Southwark Council to ask for support to secure the long term financial security of the club and facilitate its return to Champion Hill.
DHFC has requested a new lease from the council on the AstroTurf pitch.
This new lease, to be granted by the Council, would be coterminous with an 18-month lease, to be granted to DHFC by Meadow, on the Champion Hill site. Both leases include a 1 year rolling extension.
The new lease of Greendale would allow DHFC to use the AstroTurf pitch for all its sporting requirements including any match day use and such other community and sporting uses as DHFC may undertake from time to time.
DHFC has agreed to meet the Council’s aspiration for investment into the improved sporting facilities on that site for the benefit of both the club and the wider community.
Meadow has agreed to support the club’s return to Champion Hill on this basis. In recognition of this, the Council has agreed not to progress activity on a compulsory purchase order in relation to the Champion Hill site for the duration of DHFC’s lease at Champion Hill, so long as it is on fair and reasonable terms, including allowing the club to retain match day income, bar-takings and catering proceeds.”
Dulwich’s campaign to return home was backed by Sadiq Khan and it was reported that former Manchester United defender Rio Ferdinand made an offer close to £10m to buy Champion Hill.
They recently hosted a friendly with Premier League side Crystal Palace to raise much-needed funds.
After the news was announced, the football world and many football clubs took to praise and congratulate the club – check out those tweets on the next page.
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