Questions over council’s King’s Lynn football club link

Candidates for the Norfolk County Council Elections May 2013 ENGANL00120130426152949

Candidates for the Norfolk County Council Elections May 2013 ENGANL00120130426152949

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West Norfolk Council chiefs have rejected claims that they have provided financial support to King’s Lynn Town Football Club.

Questions have been raised over the relationship between the authority, which owns the Walks ground, and the club since it was bought by businessman Stephen Cleeve in June.

And during last Thursday’s full council meeting, Jo Rust accused the Conservative administration of having the wrong priorities.

She asked: “Why does the council choose to fund private profits rather than activities for disadvantaged young people at the Discovery Centre?”

But council leader Brian Long said: “Our arrangement is one of landlord and tenant.

“We have not spent monies on the club as a business, but have carried out maintenance under the terms of our lease.”

He said he did not know how much had been spent on maintenance of the Discovery Centre, but maintained there had not been any during Mr Cleeve’s ownership or that of his predecessor.

But Labour group leader John Collop said greater clarity was needed and called for an open meeting to discuss the issue.

He said: “There is concern about the football club and I think we as members should know more about what goes on with our money.

“I don’t know what we’ve done but it’s about time things were made a bit more open. You say you’ll keep us informed and you don’t.”

However, Elizabeth Nockolds, portfolio holder for culture, heritage and health, said: “I have nothing to report. We have not sponsored the football club, not at all.

“I’m quite happy to meet them but I have nothing I can inform them of.”

Andy Tyler also called for action to repair the car park at the ground, which he described as being in a “disgraceful” state.

The meeting was told that the area formed part of the club’s lease.