We have been asked by BBC Scotland’s The Nine to take part in a feature about the proposed new stadium development at Camperdown. In this we will be outlining the Trust’s position on ‘Nou Campy’ and, as such, I thought we should take the opportunity to share this with our members and the wider Dundee support.
Dee4Life has always been supportive of the stadium development in principle, however there are many outstanding questions that we believe the club needs to address.
The public meetings hosted by Dark Blue Property Holdings as part of the planning process provide an opportunity for the public to understand the implications of the development for the city, but our priority is the impact on Dundee Football Club.
Our concerns include:
- The prospect of Dens Park being sold before completion of the new stadium, depriving the club of a safety net
- The lack of clarity over ownership of the new stadium
- The lack of clarity on the prospect of interim groundsharing
- The apparent absence of a Plan B should the Camperdown project fall through
- Exposure of the club to risks associated with inflation and rising interest rates facing DBPH
Dee4Life, on behalf of all Dundee fans, are custodians of the ‘A-Shares’ which provide the support with additional rights, including protection against the club playing its home games away from Dens Park for any period exceeding one year. The Trust is committed to representing its members and the wider Dundee support to ensure their views are heard.
Therefore, we have written to John Nelms and Tim Keyes to ask that they, as owners of both DBPH and Dundee FC meet with representatives of supporters, shareholders and other stakeholders to discuss the specific impact the development will have on the club. The relationship between the club and DBPH, including expected lease terms with DBPH or any future owners and details of the risk/benefits for Dundee, is crucial.
We believe a new stadium could prove to be transformative for Dundee but there are examples of clubs who have found themselves in perilous situations because their own dream moves have turned sour. Our own club has twice been placed in administration because the ambitious plans of previous owners were not built on robust foundations. As a result, transparency and engagement are essential to ensure we do not make the same mistake again.
We welcome all views on this and other matters so please feel free to share your own opinions on the development with me, or any of my fellow Dee4Life directors.