Local soccer leagues are set to oppose any sale of Turner’s Cross even if Cork City takeover goes through

Local soccer leagues are set to oppose any sale of Turner’s Cross even if Cork City takeover goes through
The Turner's Cross faithful at a Cork City game in glorious sunshine. Picture: Brian Lougheed

GROVEMORE LIMITED, Preston North End owner Trevor Hemmings’ company, are set to fail in their bid to purchase Turner’s Cross from the Munster Football Association.

Hemmings is very interested in buying Cork City Football Club, in a personal deal rather than making City a feeder club for the Lancashire side, and he has also registered his interest in purchasing Turner’s Cross.

But sources close to the Munster Football Association (MFA) have told The Echo that it would be “unforgivable’ should they agree to sell the stadium therefore making it highly unlikely it will come to pass.

The council are set to hold their next bi-monthly meeting on March 19 when this subject will be discussed.

Close to 20 members representing the 13 leagues across Munster will be in attendance at this meeting and it is believed that, should it be put to a vote, not a single person is likely to be in favour of selling.

Speaking to The Echo earlier this week, the secretary of the MFA Ger Delaney admitted they would struggle to put a value on the stadium.

Having seen Flower Lodge sold to Cork GAA, the association are keen to preserve the history linked to the Cross and would have little use for a significant cash windfall regardless. Grovemore have said they would continue to allow local finals to be played at the venue, but they would hold the right to deny access at anytime.

Munster Senior League chairman John Finnegan will be at the meeting and while he couldn’t discuss the matter, he insisted the ground is significant for local football.

“I will be representing the Munster Senior League at the MFA meeting on March 19 and it wouldn’t be right for me to comment before then,” he said.

“But playing cup finals at Turner’s Cross is a very important part of the MSL football calendar.”

Honorary secretary of the Cork Business League Peter Travers also stated how crucial the stadium is for their teams.

“We wouldn’t have much to say other than we hold four cup finals a season at the Cross and that is a big incentive for Cork businesses when they are joining our league,” said Travers.

“All the organisation is arranged by the MFA and we’ve had no issues with them in the last number of years, but I think the availability of the Cross for local leagues has a huge impact on drumming up interest for clubs.”

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