With more rumours swirling around about the York Community Stadium, we have an update on progress.
It was hoped that a televised Super League & Championship rugby league double header would take place at the new stadium on 22 March.
Featuring York City Knights v Featherstone Rovers and Toronto Wolfpack v Wakefield Trinity, the games – screened on Sky Sports – will now be played at Bootham Crescent.
That is because community stadium operators GLL and builders Buckingham have not yet scheduled the test events required to allow it to open to the public.
In a message to fans, York City Knights said: “We share your disappointment and frustration at this outcome, but rest assured that we will work as hard as possible to make this event a success, and showcase our fantastic city to the world.”
The good news is there are no major problems with the infrastructure. A spokesperson for GLL told YorkMix:
GLL understands the frustrations felt and are keen to get the York Community Stadium and Leisure Complex open as soon as possible.
The final stages are always the most frustrating days of any complex construction project.
There are no structural issues with the scheme – the completed work will be of the required high standard and we’re working hard to put in the finishing touches and get all the right certification before a game can be played.
Despite poor weather, progress continues to be made towards completion and we shall be providing further details on the timing of the test events and the stadium opening date once confirmed.
He said the completed stadium and leisure centre will be a beacon for York and the city’s football and rugby clubs “and GLL are totally committed to delivering and operating these first class facilities for York”.
City of York Council is also frustrated.
Ian Floyd, interim head of paid service, said: “We share everyone’s frustrations at this news, and are disappointed that GLL and Buckingham have not made sufficient progress to hold the required test events to enable the planned matches on 22 March.
“We have stressed to GLL the need for this matter to be concluded as quickly as possible.
“In the meantime, we continue to work with all our partners to make a success of what will be a fantastic place to support our clubs and a real asset for the community.”
Questions and answers
We asked a series of questions based on reports that have been circulating about problems at the stadium. Our thanks to GLL for answering them in full.