Local opposition leader questions LCC investment in Finch Farm upgrades

11 July  9 Comments  [Jump to last]
Liverpool City Council's agreement to spend £4m on improvements to Everton's Halewood training complex has raised questions from Liberal Democrat opposition leader Richard Kemp.

Everton's well-publicised improvements to Finch Farm, which will include recuperation quarters for injured players, a new block for groundsmen and a mini-stadium where the U21 and Academy teams will play most of their home games, instead of at Southport, are underway, with completion expected in the coming months.

As owners of the land, LCC has committed to foot a £4m bill for the upgrades but there will be a 3% increase in the rent charged to the club which the council's cabinet and Mayor Joe Anderson see as a "fantastic deal" for Liverpool.

Kemp is sceptical, quoted by BBC Merseyside as saying: "The further investment into Finch Farm is an investment shrouded in mystery. "Why cannot the terms and conditions for this be made public?

"EFC now have a backer and more money – why cannot they finance it themselves?

"The Lib Dems have nothing against this development in principle, but these are the basic questions which are not mentioned in the report."

A council spokesman said in response: "This is a commercial arrangement which is an exceptionally good deal for council tax payers as we can reinvest the profits in delivering front-line services. "In the first two years, we have already made £400,000 that we would not otherwise have had. "The new investment will be paid back through additional rental income over the remaining term of the lease."

Quotes or other material sourced from BBC

Reader Comments (9)

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Ralph Basnett
1 Posted 11/07/2016 at 10:15:10
Actually a very good point!

I would have thought Everton would have bought this back off the council now that their finances are a lot better?

Mike Allison
2 Posted 11/07/2016 at 10:22:34
Owning Finch Farm makes money for the Council. They are profit making landlords. They're not using public money to do us a favour.

They could sell up and get a lump sum, but they see it as a long term revenue stream. The upgrades are simply them improving the value of their asset.

Dennis Stevens
3 Posted 11/07/2016 at 11:46:11
We'd still be at Anfield if it wasn't for the Liberals!
Colin Glassar
4 Posted 11/07/2016 at 12:06:45
I'd rather we just bought Finch Farm back from the council and owned it ourselves.
Nathan Rooney
5 Posted 11/07/2016 at 12:18:23
Spot on Mike!

Non-story this, saw the same crap all over social media, probably stirred up by our pinkie neighbours – methinks they are worried about the “new” Everton.

The council are putting up the rent they charge us, so what's the beef?

From Kemp's logic, and as we have a few bob, we should be doing the place up ourselves?!

Great stuff, Dicky, I'll try that with my tenant should the boiler pack up!

No wonder the Lib Dems are finished, with people like this cretin involved.

Paul English
6 Posted 11/07/2016 at 12:23:00
Richard Kemp, kopite. End of !!!!!!!
Nicholas Ryan
7 Posted 11/07/2016 at 19:41:28
Landlord improves property; tenant pays increased rent .... OMG.... what an earth-shattering, epoch-making idea. If only people had thought of that 400 years ago.... err ..... actually, they did!
Phil Gardner
8 Posted 12/07/2016 at 19:46:49
The same Richard Kemp who ignored the local community's concerns about the RS's new stadium being built in Stanley Park when he was heading the Housing Executive and fast tracked their application approval? How surprising....
Steve Smith
9 Posted 13/07/2016 at 15:17:14
Nathan #5 and Nicholas #7 are spot on, LCC are the landlords, we are just the leasee's on a very long lease that would probably guarantee the council above £10M in rent as well as whatever the purchase price would be maybe £18M? if Everton decide to buy it back. not a bad deal for LCC £11M profit ? if Everton decide to buy back now that is.
A lease (as opposed to a tenancy agreement) is a fixed term that usually has to be paid for the full term regardless of whether the leasee remains or not, barring bankruptcy of the leasee (unlikely in Everton's case I'm guessing).

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