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Page last updated at 17:19 GMT, Wednesday, 30 April 2008 18:19 UK

Shire explain Firs Park departure

Spencer Fearn at Firs Park
Fearn is leading Shire's departure from Firs Park

East Stirlingshire say they were forced to leave their Firs Park stadium partly because of new Scottish Football Association criteria.

Shire will move from their long-time Falkirk home to groundshare with neighbours and Third Division rivals Stenhousemuir next season.

Director Spencer Fearn explained why Firs Park will make way for housing.

"We would have to spend a lot of money bringing it up to to scratch," he told his club website.

"For one thing, the pitch is too short. We would have had to dig up the terracing and extend the playing surface. It's just not worth it."

Fearn thought that the club would have had to spend "tens of thousands of pounds" on improvements demanded by the game's governing body in Scotland.

We will be sharing with Stenhousemuir for a period of five years

East Stirlingshire director Spencer Fearn

The planning process is still not complete for the proposed housing.

"There is a possibility we can retain our offices at Firs Park next season and use the pitch as our permanent training facility, " said Fearn.

"Obviously, that will depend on planning consent, but we are hoping Ogilvies aren't quite ready to move in and we can go on using Firs Park. That would be ideal for us."

Meanwhile, Shire will press on with a plan to build their own stadium elsewhere in Falkirk.

"We will be sharing with Stenhousemuir for a period of five years," said Fearn.

"In that five year period, we want to make sure we have a ground of our own."

see also
McInally looks forward for Shire
29 Apr 08 |  East Stirlingshire

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