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School open to footy club stadium bid
8:00am Saturday 9th March 2013 in News
TREETOPS School has said it supports a football club’s bid to return to the town.
Grays Athletic announced last week it is in discussions with the school over a possible move back to the town after three years away.
In a statement, the school said working with one of the borough’s football clubs can only be a good thing if it aims to improve the lives of its young people.
The school, which is for children between the ages of three and 19 with moderate learning difficulties, also said that while discussions at the moment are speculative, they will consult fully with Thurrock Council and residents.
The statement said: “Treetops School has had informal talks with senior individuals at Thurrock Council and others regarding the potential development of sport and leisure facilities at the school.
“Treetops has a long-published ambition to benefit both the whole of Thurrock’s special needs community and the local neighbourhood by providing appropriate and top class sporting facilities, such as those drawn up and approved in the original planning application for our new Special Needs Schools campus.
“There has been speculation about Grays Athletic Football Club building a new ground on land currently used by the school.
“While we have had no meetings with Grays Athletic, we are happy to publicly say we support the idea of Grays Athletic having a ground in the Grays area.”
The football club’s chief executive Andy Swallow told the Gazette last week that any stadium would be small, with access from Stanford Road. He insisted the club would support the school in developing facilities, like a gym.
The school’s statement added: “We also believe that instances when a town’s football club and schools such as ours, work together as part of the same community, can only be a good thing.
“If by working together, we can improve the lives of the young people we support and, at the same time, benefit the community, we are happy to explore all possibilities.”