England: John Smith’s Stadium future to be decided

source: StadiumDb.com; author: Mateusz Osmola

England: John Smith’s Stadium future to be decided The home of Huddersfield Town, a football club performing in Championship, and Huddersfield Giants of Super League, the top-level of the British rugby league competition was discussed at a meeting on December 21. There was a concern that the venue operator could run into administrative difficulties.


Kirklees Council, the local government body overlooking one of the districts in West Yorkshire, held a meeting on December 21, with councillors asked to consider a new ownership structure for John Smith’s Stadium. The 24,121-seater since its opening in 1993, has been managed by Kirklees Stadium Development Limited (KSDL), with shares held in the company held by the council (40%), together with Huddersfield Town (40%) and the Giants (20%).

John Smith’s Stadium © Groundhopping Merseburg

KSDL has faced tough commercial conditions in recent years and the parties are in talks to put the stadium on a more sound financial foundation. Unfortunately, they cannot try their luck at casino demo, but for you there is no problem to do so. The recommendation to the council suggested that a new ownership model – in which the authorities transfer its shares to the clubs - could bring badly-needed investment to the ground, together with providing the stadium with a more sustainable business model for the coming years. In both of the proposed ideas, the council would retain ownership of the venue.

Now that councillors have agreed with the proposal, Kirklees Council will explore a new ownership model with its partners. Huddersfield Daily Examiner reported that the stadium requires from £8 million to £10 million worth of upgrades over the next 10 years to resolve a 'backlog' of ongoing maintenance. This is to extend the life of the stadium up to 2050, but the bulk of the work must be done in five years’ time.

A financially strained Kirklees Council backed the creation of a Community Trust in March to provide a £13m rescue for KSDL. But Town did not agree to the proposal and it eventually failed. KSDL is now said to have significant problems with cash flow, which, which have been made worse by rising energy costs. The option agreed by the council is for the football club to become the long-term tenant of the stadium and for the council to retain ownership of the facility.

John Smith’s Stadium © Urban Outlaw (cc: by-nc-sa)

In a joint statement, the Kirklees Council, Huddersfield Town and Giants, said: The stadium is at the heart of our community. Our clubs mean so much to people across Huddersfield and well beyond. But if the stadium is going to serve the community for the future, it needs investment and a financial platform that’s sustainable in the long term. All partners are working closely together to find a way forward that suits everyone, especially supporters and future generations of fans. There’s a lot of detailed and complex issues to consider and a range of options open to us. But all partners are committed to maintaining the stadium as the heart and soul of Huddersfield’s sporting heritage.