A FOOTBALL club was forced to cancel its first home game of the new season after the council literally moved the goalposts.
Aston Park Rangers FC had to call off their match against Sychdyn FC on Saturday because there were no goalposts on its club pitch on Shotton Lane.
Flintshire Council condemned and removed the posts earlier in the summer. Yesterday the authority said the posts were taken away because they were showing “signs of corrosion”.
Flintshire Council said it is up to Shotton Town Council – which leases the field from Flintshire Council – to replace them. New posts can cost more than £1,000.
It is understood the Town Council has now dipped into its pocket for replacement posts, which will be delivered later this week.
But town councillor Mike Evans said the posts should never have been taken down in the first place.
Aston Park FC say there is now no fully equipped football pitch in Shotton for adults.
Last night the club’s second match of the season had to moved and played at Garden City – costing the club £40.
Club secretary Nigel Brown said the team was in danger of starting the season at a disadvantage if the league deducts points from them for cancelling Saturday’s fixture.
“We’re one of the favourites for the league and we could be starting the season on minus points,” he said.
He said even though the club had paid the full season’s fees, the old posts at the club’s ground were condemned by Flintshire in June and removed in July.
Flintshire Council yesterday confirmed it removed posts from four pitches this summer – at 33 Club Shotton, Cornist Park in Flint, The Glebe Field in Whitford and Cilcain – less than in 2012. All were showing signs of corrosion and were removed as a precautionary measure a statement said.
An alternative pitch at Central Drive, Shotton, which would have been used as a back up, had its posts removed last Thursday, two days before the weekend’s opening fixtures.
Shotton town councillor and Rangers’ chairman Cllr Evans said he did not understand why the Shotton Lane posts had been taken down.
“We’ve never seen why they were condemned,” he said. “They were adequate last year and the year before.”
He said Flintshire had written to the town council saying Shotton should provide the posts.
“But they took them down, they should replace them,” he said.
Cllr Evans said pub teams Melrose Inn FC and Castle Inn FC also used the Shotton Lane pitch and would also suffer.
Mike Welch, Flintshire Council’s principal leisure services officer, said “The goalposts at 33 Club Recreation Ground, Shotton have been condemned,” he said. As the ground is managed and maintained by Shotton Town Council, the clerk has been advised of the findings of the goalpost condition survey.
"On town and community council pitches, the replacement posts are provided by the town or community council."
"The posts at 33 Club were installed by the former Alyn and Deeside District Council and so have lasted well.”