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Stadium where Jessica Ennis trains to close

The stadium where Olympic hero Jessica Ennis was discovered will be closed and demolished as a cost-cutting measure, councillors have decided.

The £29 million Don Valley Stadium in Sheffield - where Ennis still trains - is being sacrificed as part of Sheffield City Council's bid to save millions of pounds.

Jessica Ennis celebrating her Olympic Heptathlon gold at London 2012. Credit: David Davies/PA Wire

The councillors voted in favour of the measure as part of an overall budget plan that was approved after a five-hour meeting.

The Labour-run authority said it must find £50 million of savings next year after sweeping public spending cuts were announced by the Government

A general view of the Don Valley Stadium, Sheffield, South Yorkshire. Credit: Dave Higgens/PA Wire

It says the £700,000 it spent subsidising the facility in 2012/13 is unsustainable as the facility is running at a loss.

Ennis said yesterday after receiving her CBE at Buckingham Palace, "Having that iconic stadium in my home city is incredible, and to lose that would be such a shame for future athletes coming through".

Council: Stadium closure 'one of bigger options on table'

Recently, Sheffield City Council said of proposals to close Don Valley Stadium:

These are extraordinarily difficult times and we have said that we will have to look at tough budget options because of the devastating Government cuts to public spending and local government.

We have said all along that we have to consider all options and Don Valley Stadium is one of the bigger options on the table.

I want to make it clear that no decisions have been made and when we are in a position to confirm our spending decisions we will do so.

– Cllr Bryan Lodge, Cabinet Member for Finance and Resources

A decision on the future of the stadium will be made later today.


Council considers Don Valley stadium closure

Sheffield City Council is due to make a decision over the closure of Don Valley stadium today.

The council has said that it faces £50m in cuts as a result of government budget reductions and cannot afford to subsidise the stadium which cost £700,000 per year to run.

Councillors are considering a plan to demolish Don Valley and reopen the nearby Woodbourn athletics stadium.

Olympic champion Jessica Ennis was discovered at Don Valley stadium. Credit: Mike Egerton/EMPICS Sport

Olympic gold medallist Jessica Ennis has appealed for the stadium to remain open, saying its closure "would be a huge shame".

Ennis coach: Losing 'iconic' stadium would be a shame

Jessica Ennis' coach Toni Minichiello has joined the athlete in appealing against the closure of Sheffield's Don Valley stadium.

He told Sky News:

It is an iconic stadium and its a place that has inspired youngsters and none more so than Jessica Ennis.

It is a fantastic facility and it is an incredible shame to lose something like this from the sporting map.

Having taken the youngsters all the way through to Olympic gold you see that this actually can be done in Sheffield.

Why, if you can have one Jessica Ennis, can you not have two or three?

That opportunity all of a sudden looked to be there and now it's going to be taken away from a whole new generation of youngsters."

Ennis appeals against Don Valley Stadium closure

Olympic champion Jessica Ennis has made a last-ditch appeal to save the stadium where she was discovered as a teenager and still trains.

Councillors are expected to approve the closure of the Don Valley Stadium at a meeting later today.

Ennis said: "I've got some amazing memories, starting my athletic career there and having that iconic stadium in my home city is incredible.

Jessica Ennis after she received her Commander of the British Empire medal on Thursday.

"To lose that would be such a shame for future athletes coming through, so I hope that the right decision's made and we can find a way to keep it."

The Don Valley stadium in Sheffied was opened in 1991 Credit: Press Association

Olympic heroes arrive at Buckingham Palace

Olympic gold medallists Jessica Ennis, Nicola Adams and Greg Rutherford have arrived at Buckingham Palace to receive their honours.

London 2012 poster girl Jessica Ennis is collecting her CBE. Credit: ITV News
Nicola Adams (right), the first woman to win an Olympic gold boxing title, is receiving an MBE. Credit: ITV News
Long jumper Greg Rutherford (right) picks up his MBE. Credit: ITV News


Lord Mayor's parade attracts thousands in London

Thousands lined the streets of London for the annual Lord Mayor's show. Credit: ITV London

Thousands of people lined the streets of central London today to watch floats, carriages, performers - and Jessica Ennis - in the Lord Mayor's Show.

The annual parade marked the inauguration of the 685th Lord Mayor of the City of London, Alderman Roger Gifford, who was carried through the capital in a golden coach.

Olympic star Ennis to star in Lord Mayor's Show

Thousands of people are expected to line the streets of central London today to watch floats, carriages, performers - and Jessica Ennis - in the Lord Mayor's Show.

The annual parade marks the inauguration of the 685th Lord Mayor of the City of London, Alderman Roger Gifford, who will be carried through the capital in a golden coach.

Olympic gold medallist Jessica Ennis poses with the new Jaguar F-Type car as she announces her role in The Lord Mayor's Show last week. Credit: Anthony Devlin/PA Wire/Press Association Images

Joining him will be Olympic gold medallist Ennis who will have the pleasure of using a Jaguar F-Type sports car.

The car will take the athlete along the three-and-a-half mile route, which passes around Bank and Aldwych.

This year's show will showcase the talents of 6,500 people, 18 vintage cars, a tank and a steamroller among others.

Jess Ennis reveals London 2012 pressures in book

Jessica Ennis won gold in the heptathlon at London 2012 Credit: PA

Olympic gold medallist Jessica Ennis has revealed the extreme pressure of being the face of the London Olympics.

In her new book, Unbelievable, serialised in The Times, the heptathlete champion also described how she was bullied because of her size at school, and the "pure fear" she felt before the 800 metres, her final event at the Olympic Stadium.

Of the weeks and months building up to the Games, she wrote: "The pressure was huge. I would drive past five big posters of me on the way to training. It was still hard to take in.

"One night I was driving to a chip shop and was about to go in when I saw the huge Powerade ad hanging outside. There I was, supposedly sweating after a hard session, clad in Lycra and selling good health. I thought, 'God, I can't go in now', and drove on to Sainsbury's instead."

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