Clyde could be back in town

Club C con­firm they are look­ing at Cuningar site

Rutherglen Reformer - - Front Page - Dou­glas Dickie

Two groups are work­ing on plans to bring Clyde back to Ruther­glen 30 years af­ter the club left the town, the Re­former can ex­clu­sively re­veal.

The cur­rent board have made an ap­proach to Clyde Gateway to in­ves­ti­gate the pos­si­bil­ity of build­ing a new sta­dium on Cuningar Loop.

It is un­der­stood the move came af­ter a ri­val group also ap­proached the ur­ban re­gen­er­a­tion com­pany about the Cuningar Loop site.

Clyde made their ap­proach pub­lic on Fri­day night af­ter be­ing con­tacted by the Re­former.

Both plans are be­lieved to be at an early stage.

The group work­ing in­de­pen­dently of the club is made up of for­mer of­fi­cials and play­ers con­cerned about the fu­ture of the Bully Wee.

A spokesper­son for Clyde Gateway said: “We have re­ceived ap­proaches from two par­ties as­so­ci­ated with Clyde Foot­ball Club and we have pro­vided them with some rel­e­vant, tech­ni­cal in­for­ma­tion about po­ten­tial sites.

“We are wait­ing for them to come back to us as we would with any po­ten­tial in­vestor.”

In a state­ment on their web­site on Fri­day night, Clyde con­firmed their board had made an ap­proach.

They said: “We can con­firm that we have en­gaged in ex­ploratory talks with Clyde Gateway, the own­ers of Cuningar Loop, about the build­ing of a pur­pose built sta­dium de­signed for ex­ten­sive com­mu­nity use.

“We have a long way to go here as the site is not with­out its is­sues and hav­ing the right part­ners is es­sen­tial when deal­ing with a ma­jor site that is con­tam­i­nated and re­quires re­me­di­a­tion and sub­se­quent con­struc­tion.

“The club, through its dis­cus­sions with Clyde Gateway, has been able to bring to­gether an ex­ten­sive port­fo­lio of ap­pro­pri­ate light in­fra­struc­ture sta­dium draw­ings, suited to the land avail­able. If the project plan is suc­cess­ful it has the po­ten­tial to pro­vide the op­por­tu­nity for an in­de­pen­dent fu­ture for the club.”

De­spite the move, the state­ment said re­main­ing at Broad­wood was a re­al­is­tic op­tion af­ter a change in man­age­ment at North La­nark­shire Leisure, who own the ground, led to a thaw in re­la­tions with the club.

It was also re­vealed two other sites were be­ing looked at, one of which is “an ex­ist­ing sta­dium that has no cur­rent se­nior or ju­nior ac­tiv­ity,” although this is un­likely to mean a po­ten­tial re­turn to Shaw­field.

South La­nark­shire Coun­cil leader Ed­die McAvoy told the Re­former he would wel­come any moves to bring the club home.

He said: “We will do what­ever we can to bring them back.

“If Clyde can come up with a busi­ness plan and a site we will sup­port them fully.”

The Cuningar Loop site is to the south of the wood­land park which opened ear­lier this year. The land is owned by Clyde Gateway.

A pre­vi­ous plan to turn it into a zoo at­trac­tion fell through.

The Re­former un­der­stands the site would re­quire sig­nif­i­cant work be­fore it could sup­port a heavy struc­ture such as a foot­ball sta­dium.

Clyde have been in ex­ile from their spir­i­tual home for the past 30 years hav­ing left Shaw­field in 1986.

Af­ter spells in Partick and Hamil­ton, they even­tu­ally set­tled in Cum­ber­nauld.

Last month, for­mer Scot­land boss Craig Brown, who was man­ager for Clyde’s last sea­son at Shaw­field, told the Re­former it would be “too good to be true” if the club re­turned the Royal Burgh.

A pre­vi­ous pro­posal to ground­share with Ruther­glen Glen­cairn fell through while op­tions to go into part­ner­ship with East Kil­bride This­tle were also ex­plored.

Only last year Clyde said they hoped to be ground­shar­ing with Shet­tle­ston Ju­niors by the start of this sea­son but Clyde con­firmed last week that was no longer as op­tion.

Old home Clyde play in their last match at Shaw­field against Al­loa in 1986, but the cur­rent team (in­set) could be set for a re­turn to the Burgh

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