- Oct 7, 2003
It's generally accepted we keep losing managers because we have no stadium. But there is another aspect to the loss of the Goldstone that has still not been examined closely enough. It is hidden away in the files of the now superseded Hove Council Planning and Development Committee, who approved the planning application that allowed Chartwell to acquire the ground. One would expect to discover here a tale of sweeteners being paid to Tory councillors in cahoots with their chums in the property business. But, in this case, a quite different story emerges. The minutes of the meetings of this committee reveal there were in fact three attempts to obtain planning permission on the Goldstone Ground, and surprisingly they all predate Archer's chairmanship of the club and Belotti's appointment as Chief Executive. It appears that, from 1992 onwards, before Archer's and Belotti's involvement, another faction of 'Albion supporters' inside Hove Council were pressing for retail planning permission to be granted in order to raise the value of the ground, and thus reassure the club's creditors. Who were these supporters ?