Would be great if we were in a position to return somehow to our old ground, as Chelsea ladies pulling out.We need a sugar daddy,government funding or lottery funding or something but would be a real tonic for club to go back to where so many fond memories made by club.Even if we got someone in to ground share would take some of the expensive away if we were able to.Alot of maintenance costs would have been done by Chelsea so a large proportion would be already done and supporters I am 100% certain would help with painting etc.to make that happen.
Maybe Kingston Council would help with purchase as the always say the Club belongs to the Borough.
However it already probably sited for more apartments.
Oh for someone to come in and make dream come true for club to return.
Although the women's game has developed massively and
Chelsea ladies look to be insisting on plying their trade at Stamford bridge, I don't think CFC will be in a hurry to vacate, with so many teams and different levels to accomodate.
If they do sell the lease at KM, it will be up to RBK to determine
what happens to the site. Ubelievably, plans are ahead to squeeze a new secondary school on the site of the overflow car park. I can only imagine that this will be a stand alone high rise construction. The new school will undoubtedly use the athletics stadium as its sporting facility but, I wonder if part of KM is in its plans to give the new school more space and buildings for use.
Maybe the whole Kingsmeadow site might be re-developed to accomodate us with a smaller site alongside the new school and athletics stadium creating a large community based facility?
All depends on CFC and RBk I suppose?
As Jon has long argued, the key was - and remains - Ks making a concrete, credible, attractive proposal to be included rather than sending speculative emails with no details or openly saying it's not the club's priority.
I must admit that 3-4 years ago I had given up on this. Now I am, perhaps foolishly, daring to dream again.
Obviously since Chelsea moved to Kingsmeadow in 2017, things have changed dramatically.
First, Wimbledon no longer play there, so the ground is being used less than half as much as it was a few years ago.
Second, women's football has exploded. Wembley is full for England games and the FA Cup final. Arsenal sold out the Emirates for a CL game. Chelsea got 28,000 for a CL game. Women's sides are playing more regularly at their "men's" ground. I believe the plan is for Chelsea to play 6ish times at Stamford Bridge next season in all comps. They only have 11 league home games, and less than 20 overall including cups, so they won't be playing at Kingsmeadow THAT often.
Third, Todd Bohly has taken over and seems to think Kingsmeadow isn't really good enough. https://weaintgotnohistory.sbnation.com/chelsea-fc-women/2022/9/17/23358095/boehly-finding-facilities-not-acceptable-at-kingsmeadow-for-chelsea-fc-women. There was some talk, I believe in the Daily Mail, that Chelsea were interested in playing their women's games at Plough Lane. Which, in terms of capacity, probably makes sense.
It's worth pointing out that Chelsea's youth sides often play at Kingsmeadow, although I can't see that these games would make it worthwhile for them to own an entire ground simply for that.
As to how Kingstonian would end up there...well, that's the major question. Buying back Kingsmeadow? Probably impossible. Launching a 'hearts and minds' campaign through the media, effectively begging Chelsea to let a barely-used ground be shared by the non-league club that used to play there? Call me naive but I don't think it's impossible, especially for a Chelsea owner who needs good PR.
Once again, I'm annoyed with myself for even bothering to think about this. We're not the Kingstonian of the glory days of the 1990s. We're a step 3 (just) club with gates of 250ish.
But I would put money on the following two things:
(a) in 5 years' time, Chelsea Women will not play the majority of their games at Kingsmeadow
(b) in 5 years' time, if Kingstonian have a permanent place to play, it will be at an existing sports ground whose owners have departed rather than a new site. (I'd include Imber Court here...)
Pie in the sky, maybe. But I frankly have more faith in this miracle happening than I do in the board finding an empty site in the borough and building a new ground from scratch.
Edited by MC at 15:38:14 on 22nd May 2023
I frankly have more faith in this miracle happening than I do in the board finding an empty site in the borough and building a new ground from scratch.
We know that members of the Board and the Chair of the Supporters Club still read this forum. Please can someone give the supporters an assurance that Chelsea will actually be approached, to see if this miracle is possible?
Well you are beginning too see the advantages of playing out our lease with AFC ,as we should be leaving at the end of this month ,the last seven years had we stayed and there was no way we could have been gotten rid of other than the directors selling us out which they did ,Chelsea would have had to tolerate the KS if they had wanted the ground and seven years would have given us time to build a rapport with Chelsea and we may by now have been in a position to stay at k/m. You are right the board do not want any supporters.
2 people 1 person
Don't worry Rex, somebody will send an email to their reserve team's ex-physio in a few years time. Then post a news item asking for congratulations.
4 people 2 people
If there's a hearts and minds argument to make it's probably for them to allow us to rent there on similar terms to what we're being charged in Mitcham. That would be some good PR without inconveniencing them.
On a permanent option I don't think there's any chance at all that they're going to write off an £8m investment out of the goodness of their hearts. Their women may well stop playing their soon - a point it's very much worth us making any time we speak to local politicians - but they'll surely look to recoup their investment if they can (Brentford, Fulham, rugby, housing?) and if not just hang onto it for whatever other teams they still have there.
Edited by SDG (Ks) at 18:11:48 on 22nd May 2023
Brentford wont want or need it (they have the Jersey Road training ground, their B team play at the Gtech and their women's team have a ground that is suitable for its stature).
Fulham have Motspur Park for their women and youth teams and as far as I understand that remains adequate.
Not sure about other local sports entities but, if Chelsea look to cash in on their "asset" and no sporting entity is in a financial position to make an offer at that point in time, the likelihood is they sell to a property developer and the council grants planning to flip KM for housing as there will inevitably be value in to to them, both monetary and a percentage of social housing provision.
Call me cynical but I don't expect Chelsea's billionaire owners to cave to sentimentality or a charitable arrangement to not obtain maximum value for their asser under the pressure of a PR campaign, however much traction it gains... But here's to hoping and crossing fingers and toes to a return home.
I guess I was thinking that while what Brentford and Fulham have may be adequate for their women's teams at the moment, as the women's game grows - and if they decide to invest more considering the success of their men's teams - it might not be in the future.
As I say, if they decide to sell, they decide to sell it.
If they decide to keep it, and there's not much football being played there, we would be very daft not to make a case for it.
If they decide to sell it, it'll only be worth whatever anyone is prepared to pay for it. I'd like to suggest offers in the region of £440,000.
(An optimist writes: if the terms of the lease on the land say that it can be sold for housing, surely Khosla would have done exactly that?)
The terms do not ,otherwise Anderson and Winwright would have sold it .
The terms do not ,otherwise Anderson and Winwright would have sold it .
as things stand there’s no chance of that being sold for housing. it’s as protected as Lovelace is which means it’s never going to happen
that said, the protections offered to MOL and Green Belt and the like may not be as secure in the future, especially with a new government coming in under 2 years
Oh I don't think they would hand it over for the sake of it if they decide to leave entirely, that would be mad.
I meant more that if the Women's side has left and Chelsea's only use for it is the youth teams, then I think we could make a good case for them allowing us to rent there on similar terms to when we rented off Wombles. ("effectively begging Chelsea to let a barely-used ground be shared").
I'm also interested in the long-rumoured covenant about the use of that land. Initially we believed this to state something about 'the borough's senior team'. This turned out to be untrue, and at one point it was suggested the phrase was actually 'senior football'. Chelsea Women would qualify as senior football, Chelsea U19s or whatever would not.
Or perhaps the covenant didn't exist at all. I lost track!
Edited by MC at 18:57:09 on 22nd May 2023
The original lease just says football, therein lay the problem ,had the lease included "Kingstonian" all the problems would never have arisen.
There was no covenant,the word was football no mention of Kingstonian ,there in lay the fault.
I think in the end it never existed but yes, it would be nice if we could rent there again.