Developers Meadow Residential hoping to bring new planning applications for homes on Dulwich Hamlet ground Champion Hill

The landlords of one of the country’s fastest-growing non-league clubs hope to build flats on its ground after an agreement to allow football to return.
Meadow Residential hope to revive a scheme to move Dulwich Hamlet Football Club a few yards onto a next-door astroturf pitch and create scores of homes on the site.
The developer says it has also agreed to give Hamlet £50,000 to ease its current financial situation.
Meadow and Southwark council had fallen out over the town hall’s slow processing of the developer’s 151-flat application for the Champion Hill site, pictured in February
When Southwark threatened to issue a compulsory purchase to seize the land, Meadow retaliated with an even bigger scheme – this time with more than 220 apartments.
Construction on the site will depend on whether the two parties can agree on the density of the scheme and how many storeys should be allowed on the site, where the highest buildings nearby are mostly three floors.
A statement from Meadow Residential said: “We are delighted to have found a way forward which could secure the return of Dulwich Hamlet to Champion Hill.
“We look forward to working with the club to secure permission for a new stadium which will help secure Dulwich’s long-term success.
“We welcome the fresh approach from Southwark and look forward to working with the club and its supporters to securing a new stadium for Dulwich.
“The intervention of MPs Harriet Harman and Helen Hayes was very helpful and we appreciated the key role played by sports minister Tracey Crouch in securing this agreement.”
The crucial steps to this new agreement came from Hamlet director Ben Clasper, Harman and Hayes, who managed to bring all the parties together for four hours to thrash out a deal in Crouch’s office yesterday.
The stumbling blocks they overcame were Southwark agreeing to return the lease of the astroturf pitch on Greendale Playing Fields to Hamlet, so that site could later be developed for part of a new stadium; and Southwark withdrawing the threat of seizing the existing stadium site with a compulsory purchase order.
Meadow has also agreed only to include the astroturf in its scheme, thus not infringing on the Metropolitan Open Land part of Greendale Playing Fields.
Another important step was in July when Meadow wrote of the thousands of pounds of debt Hamlet supposedly owed to the developers. The firm has also stated it will allow the club to keep bar and gate receipts – which should rocket once Gavin Rose’s team returns home on December 1 for what promises to be a massive celebration for the game against Torquay United.
* Note: This piece was adjusted on October 26 to specify Meadow saying they have given, not loaned, £50,000 to Dulwich Hamlet.

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