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Last Updated: Wednesday, 6 October, 2004, 05:29 GMT 06:29 UK
Fighting fund for stadium inquiry
Fans march along Brighton seafront
Thousands of fans protested during the Labour Party conference
A budget of 35,000 for Lewes council to fight the next stage of the public inquiry into a planned football stadium at Falmer, has been recommended.

Papers being put before councillors on Wednesday say the money will be spent on engaging specialist advisers.

The authority has already fought a long-running campaign against plans for the stadium, arguing that the land is an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

The public inquiry started in 2003 and is due to re-open in February 2005.

Seafront march

Brighton's former home, the Goldstone Ground, closed in 1997 after the former chairman sold the site for development.

The team now plays at Withdean, an athletics stadium in the city, with a capacity of about 7,000.

The Seagulls applied three years ago for planning permission to build a 22,000-seater stadium at Falmer, on the outskirts of Brighton.

Some local residents have opposed the scheme.

During the Labour Party conference, about 4,000 fans marched along the seafront to support the stadium plans.

And in an exclusive interview with BBC South East, the Prime Minister - a keen football fan who supports Newcastle United - said the inquiry had taken too long.

But he said that the statutory responsibility lies with John Prescott, who would make the decision next year.

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03 Sep 04  |  Southern Counties


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