FOOTBALL

TIM HARRIS: We Have a Massive Problem

Gloucester City manager Tim Harris has sent out a plea to Gloucester Rugby’s CEO Stephen Vaughan to discuss a potential ground share at Kingsholm.

The Tigers, who have been without a ground for almost a decade since the 2007 floods in Gloucester destroyed their Meadow Park Stadium, are unlikely to continue playing at Cheltenham Town’s Whaddon Road next season.

Now staring homelessness in the face and in need of some sort of deal before March to satisfy National League North bosses, Harris is looking to Premiership Rugby Union side Gloucester Rugby for help.

“My side of it is quite clear, we have a massive problem, it’s highly unlikely that we will be able to play at Whaddon Road and we need to find a ground.

“I have spoken to Stephen Vaughan and hopefully I’ll have a coffee with him this week, it’s not looking a possibility [the ground-share] but you never know.

“I’m just trying to play on the fact that we are very much part of Gloucester as a city, as a football club we’ve done tremendously well, it’ll be ten years next year in exile, can we work something out? I don’t know”.

Harris, who spent several years with current Sky Bet League Two side Newport County, has vast experience of ground sharing having worked as Director of Football with the South Wales side.

During his time, County moved from Spytty Park to Rodney Parade, the home of two rugby clubs.

“In terms of rugby clubs and football clubs sharing grounds it happens all over the country, I had an experience when I was at Newport and we moved to Rodney Parade where Newport Gwent Dragons play and whilst that pitch has taken a bit of a hammering, people need to understand that there are  three teams playing on it.

“One week Newport Gwent Dragons played on a Friday night, Newport County played in the Football League on a Saturday and Newport Rugby played on the Sunday so there were three games in one weekend on it”.

Gloucester City have played home matches at Cirencester’s Corinium Stadium, Forest Green Rovers’ New Lawn and Cheltenham Town’s Whaddon Road, but now are desperate for a return to the city of Gloucester.

“What I’m saying is look at the history and the heritage of the city of Gloucester and I know they are a Premiership Rugby club and I understand that it’s a big ground and it’s a sixteen and a half thousand capacity, but what I’m saying is look, Gloucester Rugby is a big tradition of their city but is there any way you can help us.

“We’ve got to explore every opportunity and if we could move back to the city and play at Kingsholm for a season then I think it would be fantastic for the city and show the heritage that we are right behind the football club, but we don’t know if it’ll be possible at this stage”.

Without the help of Gloucester Rugby, the Tigers may be forced further afield with the likes of Evesham United being one name linked with a potential share.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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