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Hitchin Town launch crowdfunder to save ground

This is a story from the FSF archive – the FSF and SD merged to become the FSA in 2019.

One of the oldest non-league clubs around, Hitchin Town FC, are looking for supporters from across the country to back their crowdfunding drive.

The club has emerged from a long legal battle with its land owners who wanted to sell Top Field to developers aiming to build a supermarket on the site. Now with a 25 year lease in place, the club is looking to raise funds to refurbish its facilities and as it says: “rebuild  a sustainable community non-league football club for future generations of our town.”

Founded in 1928, Hitchin Town has heritage going back to the defunct Hitchin Football Club from 1865, have been at Top Field ever since, and are celebrating their 150th anniversary this year.

Club secretary Roy Izzard said: “The landowners wanted to force us out from our Top Field stadium and replace our ground with a supermarket development.

“We hope you all realise the importance of grassroots football to the community and we hope you will donate from as little as £1.

“The club’s finances were hit hard by the legal expenses, now we’re battling for our very survival.”

Before Christmas, more than 1,000 supporters turned out for a protest march to demonstrate against the actions of the landowners and having secured their lease the club is looking to move forward. 

Hitchin Town hope supporters from across the country will back their Crowdfunder so that they can bring Top Field stadium up to a “21st century” standard.

The club are aiming to raise £50,000 in its first crowdfunding drive, but estimates the total cost of rebuiling Top Field at £2m – £250,000 per main stand, £200-500,000 for a new pitch with the remainder on floodlighting, the clubhouse and changing rooms. 

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Funding partners

  • The Football Association
  • Premier Leage Fans Fund

Partners

  • Gamble Aware
  • Co-operatives UK
  • FSE
  • Kick It Out
  • Level Playing Field
  • Living Wage Foundation
  • SD Europe