Mike Ashley’s attempt to make a quick extra few million from a St James Park land sale, has been called in by Newcastle Council’s Overview and Scrutiny committee.

If the land opposite the Gallowgate End is developed, then it will take away the only realistic way of expanding St. James Park for future generations.

The resentment towards Mike Ashley’s running of the club has caused thousands to stay away, whilst the standard of football has also been generally desperate, despite this over fifty thousand have filled the stadium on all but a few occasions.

(To feature like John, send in your articles for our website to [email protected] – all views are the author’s own etc etc)

This points clearly to the potential Newcastle United have to fill a much bigger stadium in the future, with even relative success on the pitch meaning United would easily fill a 60,000 seater stadium, the kind of capacity envisaged if the Gallowgate End was developed.

There have been preliminary proposals agreed for a potential 600 bed student development, although there has been no follow up planning application made as yet.

The Chronicle reports that the sale is set to make the council over £800,000 as well as teh millions that Mike Ashley would pocket.

Now though the sale decision will be discussed on Tuesday after the councillors on the ‘Overview and Scrutiny’ committee wrote to the council questioning the wisdom of the sale.

However, at the forefront of the Councillors’ thinking doesn’t appear to be worries about the impact of a sale on Newcastle United fans and the long-term health of the club.

With Councillor Greg Stone saying:

“We want to know what will this mean for the council and Nexus in terms of financial income and what alternatives are being considered for other developments?

“Surely high-spec office space seems more logical in that area and the bigger question, is that the council doesn’t have a policy on city centre student accommodation and there needs to be one.”

A council spokesman confirmed Tuesday’s crucial meeting:

“The decision to dispose of land near to St James Metro station, subject to planning permission, has been called in by the Overview and Scrutiny Committee. They will consider the issue next Tuesday.”

Let’s hope that the impact on the future health of Newcastle United is also taken into consideration by our elected representatives, if the ground is full to watch the current rubbish under the tyrant Mike Ashley, just how many would want to go if things were different?

At the same time the NUFC owner is trying to sell off United’s future for a relative pittance, numerous clubs are desperately trying to increase their stadium capacities to help ensure they can compete in the future and get as many fans in as possible.

Newcastle are the third biggest in terms of ground capacity in England at the moment, but Spurs, West Ham, Manchester City, Liverpool and Everton are just some of the clubs either planning, or in the middle of, expanding their stadiums or building brand new ones.

  • Paul Patterson

    It shouldn’t be allowed to happen- Simple as . .

  • BillyfromConsett

    Ashley wants mediocrity now and forever. IMO he’s not a fit and proper football person.

  • Bornunderabigbluestar

    Ashley wants money and is not bothered who he upsets in the process.

  • No Brainer

    This is really important john can you post links to councillors and wards so those they represent can make them aware we don’t this development unless consideration is given to possible future expansion.
    It’s the only to make them get off their backsides none are campaigning just now maybe they do not think we care.

  • Sickandtiredstill

    No Brainer Ashley takes no money out of the club, huh?

  • DownUnderMag

    A new stadium means financial investment that doesn’t mean an immediate profitable return, of course he isn’t interested in it.  As long as the TV money is there, more fans in the stadium just mean more people to voice disapproval, the TV money and player sales profit margin is all Ashley cares about.  The fans are a distant last place when it comes to consideration.

    The other thing is Ashley doesn’t really see a long term future for the club, he isn’t in this for the long haul so him selling land off for immediate profit is all he cares about.  The fact it limits the clubs expansion in the future doesn’t concern him because he won’t be around for it…

  • Greggy164

    No Brainer  Have you got doubts over Ashley Brains?

    Do you not trust Mike?

  • Morpeth mag

    This deal is probably all done and dusted,, but I still wrote to the council leader, expressing disapproval, the more people who send him emails the better, at the end of the day they are elected by newcastle fans and should be listening to there point of view,,,

  • PhilYare

    we should have never let it get this far, why people are still turning up to feed the monster i just don’t know

    yes it hurts to not go, it hurts to shut it out as its a way of life but the long term damage this man is inflicting on our great club is irreparable

  • No Brainer

    This seems a bit disingenuous, it now seems that it is the council who have been doing the pushing for this development to happen so they can get massive millions in rates from the buildings when developed. 
    It is expected that while the lease ashley has is worth about 5-10m the council get upwards 3m per year. 
    Now it seems all the posturing by the councillors is just smoke and mirrors to hide their responsibility.

  • No Brainer

    Morpeth mag Have a further look at this it is the council doing this to fill their own pockets did he write back to you.

  • Sickandtiredstill

    No Brainer  3 million a year? Where on earth did you dream that up from? Until Sep ’14 the land was leased to the Council for 82,400 a year.

  • No Brainer

    Sickandtiredstill No Brainer That’s what they expect to get from the developed land you numskull can you not even grasp that the business rates from a 24 storey office tower 700 rental properties and another building housing offices and a hotel would increase the ratable value of the land.

    I love you it’s like you set me up to embarrass you.

  • Sickandtiredstill

    No Brainer Sickandtiredstill You do plenty fine all on your own.

    The fact being, if Ashley wasn’t selling then it’s all a moot point. The club signed a 125 year lease on that land in 1998, so I guess he really really really needs that 5-10 million you suggest huh?

  • No Brainer

    No fella you need to read the lease which is open public at Newcastle civic centre. The land was leased on promise of development and has to be developed the reason for this is to increase the council coffers and nothing else.
    Open your mind for once plonker

  • Sickandtiredstill

    No Brainer Ok, prove it. You do a lot of talking so I’d be happy to stand corrected if you can provide the evidence you speak of.

    Then again, there was a plan for development wasn;t there. Fatty would rather gain money from the club than spend it once again.

  • No Brainer

    Sickandtiredstill No Brainer It was all over the front of yesterday’s Journal ya numpty you’re obviously not living in the region.

  • Sickandtiredstill

    No Brainer Sickandtiredstill Haha, aye ok, Columbo. Your reasoning makes as much sense as ever.

    Fact remains, Fatty has no intention of extending the ground and that’s why this is an issue.

    That seems to be something you believe should be fought against (?) according to your other posts on this subject.

    So, you want the right to extend to exist, but not for one of the worlds richest men and the Club owner to actually do that? A typical stance of yours, argue both sides.