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Today Hastings United Football Club sent an open letter to Jane Hartnell, the Chief Executive of Hastings Borough Council

Dear Jane

I am writing on behalf of the Club and the thousands of local fans to ask that the proposal for the development of new sports facilities at Tilekin be resolved without any further delay. Despite previous assurances that the Report requested at the Council meeting in May had been prepared, yet again the matter has been deferred following the cancellation of the May Cabinet meeting.

The Council resolution of 15th December 2022 at Minute 293, requested that a Report be presented to Cabinet ‘at the earliest opportunity’, in respect of the Tilekiln Project. The Club having accepted the Officer’s comments that Budget and other legalities needed to take precedence, noted that there were grounds for a slight delay. However, the continued delay is now unacceptable and especially as no explanation has been offered or update provided. The schedule of Council meetings to be agreed at the Council’s Annual meeting in May would appear to indicate that the next Full Council meeting will be 19th July; this being the next meeting that any Report and/or recommendation would be forwarded from the Cabinet meeting due to be held on 5th June should the Report be presented then.

The Club requests that an assurance is now given that the Report will be available and presented to Cabinet on 5th June. The Club also requests that, in accordance with Part 4 of the Council Constitution (Rules of Procedure) an Extraordinary Council meeting be convened a week after the Cabinet meeting of 5th June to enable Council to consider any Report or Resolution from Cabinet regarding the Tilekiln Project. If this cannot be agreed, then the Club will seek to obtain the support of 5 Councillors to invoke the request for an Extraordinary Council meeting.

Finally, I would submit that this matter how now been delayed for longer than is necessary and that the Club, the Club’s Fans and the wider community deserve a resolution to this matter urgently. The Tilekiln Project presents the town of Hastings with a unique opportunity to provide a major sporting facility not just for Hastings United Football Club but the whole football community as well as other sporting interests.

This letter is being submitted as an Open Letter to the Council and will be released to Fans and the general public through the Club website and other social media outlets in addition to the local press.