MOVES to pre-empt potential changes to the rules regulating football grounds have been put on hold in Holbeach.
Holbeach United has made a request to Holbeach Parish Council for permission to build a hardstanding area around the pitch at Carter’s Park to prevent a repeat of last summer’s ground problems.
However, councillors are not prepared to let the Tigers make any changes to Carter’s Park at the moment.
They say the changes may not be necessary and, if put in place, will mean no cricket club will be able to play at the park in the future.
Coun Carol Johnson said: “They want to pre-empt a move by the Football Association and put a hardstanding area along the cricket field boundary, which at the minute is temporary fencing.”
Holbeach were demoted from the UCL Premier Division last summer after the ground was deemed to be in breach of the required Grade F standard.
The club did not have a hardstanding – a one-metre strip of concrete – from the grandstand to the corner of the pitch and behind the goal.
Work to build the required upgrades was completed in June and the club now has hardstanding on two sides of the pitch.
The Tigers were later reinstated to the league when rivals Stotfold were accepted into the Spartan South Midlands League.
“Although there is no cricket club, Carter’s Park is designed for one. If we put a hardstanding down it wipes out the cricket club,” said Coun Peter Savory. “We should be encouraging all sports.”
Coun Isobel Hutchinson said the club should wait and see what the FA request.
She said: “If they have not been asked to do it by the FA, then we should write back saying that we are not happy about the situation at this stage.
“If they are certain that they need it, then we will discuss it again.
“If we allow them to put it down and it is not needed it will cost them more to put it down and take it up again, which is ridiculous.”