Richard Holden, MP for North West Durham, has written to Nigel Huddleston MP, Minister for Sport in the Department of Culture, Media and Sport, regarding football in North West Durham.

Football clubs across North West Durham are looking forward to being able to resume playing football once the current public health crisis allows them to, but Tow Law Football Club, Consett Football Club and Crook Town Football Club have all raised specific concerns about their future in conversations with Richard and issues that have hit them

Tow Law AFC has been seriously affected by significant subsidence, which has recently led to the emergence of a crater in the pitch. This has rendered the pitch unusable as it is extremely unsafe and there are concerns that the hole will continue to expand. The Club have spoken to the Coal Authority but are seeking further assistance to allow them to return to football when they can.

In early March, Consett AFC reached the FA Vase Semi-Final for the first time in their history. The Semi-Final is currently on hold but the Club are keen to see the match take place later in the year, if possible. They are looking any help possible to ensure that Vase football matches are able to take place in some way this year.

Crook Town AFC have performed well this season and are keen to ensure that their results are not made null and void. They are looking for clarity about plans that have been made for football once the pandemic situation has calmed down.

Commenting, Richard Holden, MP for North West Durham, said:

“I am extremely fortunate to have so football clubs right at the heart of their communities in my constituency and have enormously enjoyed watching Consett AFC do so well in all their recent matches – I was thoroughly looking forward to them reaching the final!

“I really appreciate the efforts everyone has made in putting their lives on hold during the coronavirus situation and I include all the football clubs in that. But I also appreciate that they are seeking reassurance over the future.

“I have written to the Sports Minister for clarification on a number of issues that have been raised. I am particularly concerned about the danger of playing on the pitch at Tow Law. Once this is all over, I would be delighted to host the Minister at any one of our local clubs.”