MP Helen Hayes has secured a debate in Parliament about Dulwich Hamlet FC.
The Dulwich and West Norwood MP said “hundreds” of constituents had contacted her about the non-league football club, which could be kicked out of its Champion Hill home at the end of the season by developer Meadow Residential, which currently owns the land.
The Labour MP has also sent a joint letter with Camberwell and Peckham MP Harriet Harman to Sports Minister Tracey Crouch, asking for her department’s help to restart negotiations between the council, club and developer to find a solution to secure the future of the club.
Speaking to the News, Ms Hayes said: “It’s an adjournment debate on Friday [March 16] which is an opportunity for any MP to raise any issue, but quite often specific to the constituency, directly with a minister – in this case the department for digital, culture, media and sport – and get a response and hopefully get some support on this issue from the government.
“The reason I’ve called the debate is firstly because Dulwich Hamlet matters enormously to many, many constituents; the fan base for the club extends far beyond the stadium itself and many of my constituents feel a great sense of affection and connection with the club.
“More widely than that, I think what’s happening at Dulwich Hamlet exposes a wider set of issues about league and non-league football which is highly important to both the local communities and fans: in an affordable way in the local community where people are having to travel to premier league games and so forth, but also in the way it provides an opportunity for people from a very diverse range of backgrounds to get into the industry and be talent spotted and start out on a journey in the sport.
“Dulwich Hamlet in particular also plays a fantastic role in the community more widely in terms of its charitable work and the way it supports a wide range of causes.”
Meadow said that, during the term of licensed usage, it “has received no rent (despite being due under the licence) and have subsidised the day to day operations of DHFC Ltd”.