ULU lottery grant to be paid back

July 3, 1998

THE University of London will have to repay nearly Pounds 200,000 of National Lottery grant and possibly part of any profits made in the Pounds 2.5 million sale of a student sports ground to Fulham Football Club.

The Sports Council gave the university Pounds 197,250 in April 1996 for an artificial pitch at Motspur Park, Surrey. It says the university cannot dispose of the site without repaying the grant. A council spokesman said that it could also claim part of any profits. He said: "If an award is less than Pounds 5,000 our interest would be for three years. If, let's say, we are talking about Pounds 200,000, then we retain an interest for considerably longer."

The sale will save the University of London Union about Pounds 100,000 a year on upkeep. More than Pounds 200,000 was required immediately to tackle a backlog of repairs.

ULU sports societies will enjoy continued limited access to the ground. Cash from the sale will be ringfenced for student sports and recreation provision.

Second division Fulham, owned by Harrods chief Mohamed Al Fayed, confirmed this week that the sale could be completed by the end of the year.

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