Date: 13th May 2013 at 1:04pm
Written by:

OxVox, the independent Supporters` Trust of Oxford United, today heard that its bid to have The Kassam Stadium listed as a Community Asset under the Localism Act (2011) has been approved by Oxford City Council.

This means that in the event that the Stadium is to be sold, OxVox must be notified, and can exercise the right to a six month moratorium on any sale in order to put together a bid for the Stadium.

OxVox Chairman Mark Sennett said, “This is a significant moment for the supporters of Oxford United, and we`re delighted with the Council`s decision. This means United supporters will now never wake up one morning to read in the paper that the Stadium has been sold, with no recourse. The stadium is of huge local importance to the people of Oxfordshire, and the Club`s role is a source of huge community benefit and pride. Because of this listing, supporters and the Oxfordshire community will be able to play more of a role in its destiny.

“We have kept Oxford United FC fully informed of this application throughout, though the club has not been directly involved. We have already notified the club about the decision and they too understand the significance of the application being accepted.”

Tom Hall from Supporters Direct, the governing body for supporters` trusts, said

“There are still too many cases of football grounds being treated like any other asset, and this legislation gives us an opportunity to begin to change that assumption. OxVox`s application to list the Kassam Stadium is the first successful one involving a football ground.

“We`ve had significant interest since we started promoting this scheme amongst out member supporters` trusts, and both the Manchester United Supporters Trust and Spirit of Shankly are currently seeking listings for Old Trafford and Anfield, We hope that this successful application by OxVox, in many respects groundbreaking, encourages other supporters` trusts to do the same.”

Terry Winter OxVox and Oxford.Vitalfootball. ‘As a sports fan in Oxford I was saddened to learn plans were afoot for the Speedway/Greyhound stadium to be turned into extra housing. We started to explore options that the Oxfordshire Community would not lose another stadium in the area. The Kassam stadium has not just been a home for Oxford United football club but has been a real asset which many people have enjoyed.’