1. ITV Report

Stevenage call on local community to help them raise money needed to fund new stand

Stevenage are keen to redevelop their North Stand. Credit: ITV News Anglia

Stevenage have given fans the chance to help raise the money needed to finally build their long-awaited new North Stand.

The League Two club are inviting supporters and other members of the local community to invest in a 'mini-bond' scheme that should raise the extra £500,000 needed.

Anyone interested would earn interest every year and get their money back at the end, and it's hoped the new 1,600 all-seater stand would be up and running in time for the start of the 2018/19 season.

Stevenage have already secured a grant of £450,000 from the Football Foundation for the project, but still require more cash to finally make it happen.

The move has effectively been described as a loan from fans and investors to Stevenage FC.

Similar schemes have proved succesful in the past in cricket and rugby, but haven't been commonplace in football.

I want to do this together with the fans and the community, standing shoulder to shoulder for Stevenage.

Stevenage is a community club and it’s important we keep it that way; that’s why we’re offering fans and the local community the chance to invest in the Club, to help us grow but also get a benefit from their investment.

Doing it this way means there is a financial benefit to the people who invest as well as there being emotional reasons to support the Club they love. And in addition, fans will be able to enjoy the new stand with great facilities for all.

– Phil Wallace, Stevenage chairman