Doncaster Mayor and elected buffoon Peter Davies is reportedly exploring the possibility of selling the Keepmoat Stadium. The Stadium, inclusive of the adjacent Athletics Stadium and Soccer Centre was funded by Doncaster Metropolitan Borough Council and has been the home of Doncaster Rovers since 1st January 2007.
The Stadium (or ‘The £32million Stadium’ as it is now unanimously referred to in the local press) has been running at an annual loss since it opened, although the amount of deficit has been reduced in the past twelve months. On the back of these improved projections DMBC voted in February to continue as the stadium’s guarantor until March 2010.
Calls for the Stadium to be sold off by the Council are nothing new. In early 2008 Liberal Democrats’ Paul Blissett put forward a motion for the sale of the Keepmoat Stadium and that failed by just a single vote. However, it must be said that, as with anything he rises, the Mayor’s own views are still unclear. Perhaps still rattled by his disastrous first day of office Radio Sheffield interview with Toby Foster Mayor Davies continues to speak a lot without actually committing himself to any firm actions or viewpoints.
Talking to the Doncaster Free Press Mayor Davies said “Certainly the future of the Keepmoat Stadium needs looking at – all options are open. One might be to talk to John Ryan and his fellow directors because securing Doncaster Rovers as a viable football team in the Championship, or higher, is important to the borough,” he meandered on; “Whatever we do with the stadium will be for the good of Doncaster and for the sporting teams of Doncaster. That is the critical thing.”
So in summary, Mr Davies wants to do things for the good of the Borough and its sporting teams, and as part of this he will look at the future of the Stadium. Call me pedantic, but that seems to be not so much news as Mr Davies picking out sections of his job description.
Davies comments to the Doncaster Star yesterday were even better; “I don’t want to express a firm opinion, but my general view is that the council should not be running entertainment venues of any sort. We need to look at the viability of the stadium, but I would not like to lay down a policy yet, as I don’t believe in making policy on the hoof.” He may not believe in it, but it was enough to get him elected despite having no confidence in his own opinions.
The Free Press’ coverage of this story went on to add that Mr Davies had continued to fulfil his pledge of saving Doncaster taxpayers money by removing the Council from the Local Government Association (LGA) and the Local Government Information Unit (LGIU). Apparently LGIU is an independent think-tank providing advice and training to councils. You can’t help but feel he moved a little too soon on that one.