Earmarked Grimsby Town stadium site was once an Iron Age settlement
CAMPAIGNERS against a new football stadium in Grimsby say the historical value of the site should be enough to stop it going ahead.
Weelsby Avenue is home to a 2,000-year-old Iron Age settlement, which was uncovered by archaeologists in the 1980s – and where Grimsby Town Football Club want to build their new stadium.
As reported, the Mariners have teamed up with Simons Development Ltd to “investigate the viability” of using a 22.7-hectare plot between Peaks Parkway and Weelsby Avenue for a new stadium, which could also have community use and a retail outlet.
But it has been met with strong opposition from residents of Weelsby Avenue, who fear having a stadium so close to a residential area would change the entire character of the place.
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A petition was launched, spearheaded by Ernie Brown of Roundway, and collected more than 1,000 signatures.
Joining Ernie in the campaign is 90-year-old Lewis Haddock, of Weelsby Avenue, who has gathered information on the 1986 dig – which uncovered pottery, weapons, huts and, most excitingly, four skeletons. It also uncovered the only known Iron Age chainmail suit.
Mr Haddock, said: “I had been enquiring for more information since they announced plans to build the stadium there because if anything can stop it, this can. This is a site of historical significance and North East Lincolnshire Council should take that into consideration. Anyone who agrees to it being built here is so short-sighted and I trust the council to see that they cannot build here.
“This is the one thing that will definitely stop them in their tracks.”
The site was described as an “historic site of European importance” and a “valuable, vital educational and touristic tool”.
So important was it that the then Grimsby Borough Council – controversially – approved planning permission to build several replica huts at the site to show people how it might have looked back in 44BC.
Sadly, the site, complete with its own moat, fell foul to vandalism on a regular basis before its centrepiece was completely destroyed in a fire in 1989 and closed down a year later.
Mr Haddock continued: “It is so short-sighted. Why put a third-rate football team ahead of the history of the area? All the information I have is fascinating and we should be making more of it in our fight to stop it.”
A North East Lincolnshire Council spokeswoman, on behalf of Simons, said: “Simons is aware of the Iron Age settlement and this will be taken into consideration when looking at any future proposal they bring back to the council.”
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