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Published: 11:34 | 4/10/16

Shels to leave Tolka for Dalymount

Shelbourne Football Club will leave Tolka Park to move to Dalymount Park where they will groundshare with Bohemians.

Dalymount Park is to undergo a €20million redevelopment which will see capacity increase to 10,000 and Shelbourne has reached an agreement with Dublin City County to become co-anchor tenants at the improved facility.

"Shelbourne FC wishes to announce that it has come to an agreement with Dublin City Council (DCC) to relocate to a redeveloped Dalymount Park as co-anchor tenants with Bohemian FC," chairman Joseph Casey said in a statement.

"Pending the redevelopment of Dalymount, Shelbourne FC will continue to play out of Tolka Park under a new Licence granted by DCC. As part of this agreement Shelbourne FC Ltd, the company which trades as Shelbourne Football Club, has surrendered its interest in Tolka Park to DCC.

"The decision to leave Tolka was a difficult one for both the Directors of Shelbourne FC Ltd and for the Board of Management of the Club. It has been our home for almost three decades and during these years the Club enjoyed tremendous success there.

"Both the Directors and the Club’s Board of Management are united in the view that the time is right to start planning a move to pastures new. Tolka Park is increasingly showing its age and there was no prospect of attracting investment to redevelop.

"The Club would like to thank all of its Supporters and Sponsors who have remained loyal during these protracted and complex negotiations. The Supporters’ patience and understanding has been tremendous particularly given that the negotiations had mainly to be conducted in private with little opportunity for ongoing updates.

"The Club would also like to express its gratitude to DCC and in particular to Deputy Chief Executive Brendan Kenny, for the professional and understanding manner in which the negotiations were conducted. The supportive role played by the FAI and in particular CEO John Delaney throughout the negotiations is also acknowledged and appreciated.

"Thanks also to the various DCC Councillors who, urged on by our supporters’ groups, advanced our case to be part of the redeveloped Dalymount. Last but by no means least, the Club would like to thank its neighbours on Richmond Road and its Drumcondra environs for tolerating the inevitable inconvenience that a football club can on occasions bring to a neighbourhood.

"Shelbourne FC now looks forward to being part of the Steering Group which will be established to ensure that the redeveloped Dalymount Park heralds a new dawn for League of Ireland football on the Northside of the Liffey and indeed throughout the country.

"We look forward to working with Bohemian FC and while remaining foes on the pitch, hope to work tirelessly off it to ensure the project ahead is a success."

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