Sports clubs to be ousted by shooting events

PUBLISHED: 16:02 04 March 2010 | UPDATED: 17:39 25 August 2010

PLANS to stage Olympic shooting events will result in scores of teams being evicted from their sports fields for up to two seasons.

PLANS to stage Olympic shooting events will result in scores of teams being evicted from their sports fields for up to two seasons.

Sport England has demanded that 12 clubs, each containing several squads, be given an alternative venue after Greenwich council gave a green light for 2012 Olympic shooting events on Woolwich Common.

Teams using three adult football pitches, two junior football pitches, one rugby pitch and one cricket pitch will have to find somewhere else or face losing their fixtures when site works start in summer 2011.

The Royal Artillery Barracks was chosen for the Olympic and Paralympic rifle, pistol, and trap and skeet shooting events and the Paralympic archery competition.

Extensive temporary works are needed to enable Olympic events to be staged in 2012.

Sport England said in its submission to the council that it did not want to see community sports teams adversely affected by having to make way "in favour of elite competitive sport."

It said: "In respect of protection of community sport we have concerns that a number

of teams using the site will be effectively evicted from the site for an, as yet,

undefined time.

"The development and site preparations will particularly impact those teams and sports that have summer seasons, cricket and rugby."

Of the 12 clubs affected, five are football, three are rugby and four are cricket clubs.

Planning approval was conditional on full restoration of the site once the Games are over with significant improvements including tree planting, landscaping, new footpaths and cycle lanes.

Leader of Greenwich council, Chris Roberts, said: "We will ensure that all possible measures will be taken to minimise any disruption to residents during both the preparation works and Games-time and will keep local people fully-informed of what is planned for the site.

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