Wednesday, April 20, 2011
The Ronald Johnson playing fields were donated to the people of Moston in 1910 by the family who owned the nearby wire works.
Apart from a spell during and after World War Two when they were used to host prefabricated homes for those whose houses had been bombed, they have been used for football and cricket ever since.
The proposed stadium on the site replaces FC United's original plans to build a stadium at Ten Acres Lane in Newton Heath which collapsed when the council withdrew £600,000 funding.
Town hall bosses blamed that withdrawal on government cuts.
However, a draft proposal for the new site shows that the council will spend £750,000 if the plans get the go-ahead - money which was earmarked for improvements to the Moston site in 2009. It includes £200,000 to be spent on feasibility plans and business studies.
That disclosure will no doubt add fuel to claims - denied by the council - that it pulled the plug on Ten Acres Lane to avoid upsetting Manchester City, who are set to pump millions into the area as part of a huge regeneration scheme.
FC United, which is run by fans, has always wanted to build a new home in Manchester and looked set for Ten Acres – symbolically close to where Manchester United were born.
It is understood that plans for Moston will be similar to those that were drawn up for Newton Heath – a stadium with a capacity of 5,000 with around 500-600 seats.
The plans would include an astro-turf pitch and a club house but there would be no sports centre.