Ex-Pompey owner pays council over axed training site

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FORMER Pompey owner Sacha Gaydamak’s firm has paid more than £200,000 to Gosport Borough Council over the club’s axed training ground.

The money comes from a deal made in 2008 over Portsmouth Football Club’s plans to build a multi-million pound training ground at Cherque Farm in Lee-on-the-Solent.

Council bosses won a legal challenge last year after the plans were abandoned and the company was ordered to pay the council £330,000 within 18 months

Now The News can reveal Miland Development 2004 has two payments left to make of around £50,000 each.

Meanwhile, people are calling on the council to plough the money back into developing the Alver Valley.

The leader of Gosport Borough Council, Councillor Mark Hook, said: ‘We’re delighted we’re getting the money back. Sacha has been true to his word.

‘They are making their payments and we’re not having any problems.

‘We are looking closely at the Alver Valley and there is a lot of money that needs to be spent there so some of the money will be used there.’

Four years ago Gosport Borough Council gave the green light for Pompey to build a new training ground at Lee-on-the-Solent.

But the deal meant the council had to pay back £330,000 in cash to Persimmon Homes, the builders behind the Cherque Farm development.

The builders had given the cash as part of a legal agreement for them to pay for new leisure facilities in the area.

To make sure the council could recover its money if the training ground plans were abandoned, it signed an indemnity agreement with Miland Development 2004.

And with the training ground proposals long buried, the council was forced to take legal action in July last year.

Richard Mackay, the chairman of the Lee-on-the-Solent Residents’ Association, said: ‘It’s nice to know the money is coming back.

‘I’d certainly like to see it go back to provide sports and leisure facilities in the Alver Valley. Small improvements are going quite nicely as far as opening up access.

‘We could do with more sports facilities because the playing fields are very busy at the recreation ground.’