Former England cricketer Monty Panesar has thrown his support behind Luton Town’s plans for a new ground at Power Court after visiting Kenilworth Road this afternoon.
The 34-year-old Northamptonshire spin bowler, who began his career playing for Luton Town & Indians in Wardown Park, spent time looking at the models of the new stadium and mixed-use development proposed for the land by Junction 10 of the M1, Newlands Park.
He sent an email declaring his support to Luton Borough Council and then urged all other Lutonians to do the same.
Speaking to the official club website, Panesar said: “If Luton could get this stadium it would bring so much more revenue to the town and to the economy of the local people, it would create more jobs.
“This new football stadium will be the centre for Luton in the 21st century, so I would encourage everyone in the town to get behind this, because we’ve been waiting for so many years to get a new stadium.
“Kenilworth Road has huge history, there is character to the stadium, but I think now is the time that the whole town gets behind Luton Town Football Club and we can get this new stadium up and running.
I think now is the time that the whole town gets behind Luton Town Football Club and we can get this new stadium up and running.Monty Panesar
“Firstly, it’ll be great for football, as I’m sure with the new stadium, the level of football will go up and we’ll get promoted to other divisions, because that’s just the nature of sport; when you get better facilities, you get better stadiums, the quality of the football goes up a level.
“And also there’ll be more jobs and more revenue, and I think that’s great for the town.”
Panesar knows just what having a state-of-the-art new stadium would mean for aspiring footballers around Luton too, as he added: “We’ve always seen that Luton, as a town, produces really good athletes, while football has always been very strong, and cricket, obviously I used to bowl so many overs in a local park and made it as a cricketer.
“But I think when you have local people from Luton, you want to promote the next generation of sport coming through, and this is the first stepping stone of hopefully getting a new stadium.
“I plead to everyone, let’s get behind this campaign. Let’s get this new stadium up and running and hopefully when it’s 2020, I may just appear in the new stadium as the Hatters’ mascot!”
To show your support for the planning applications, visit www.2020developments.co.uk/application and follow a link to the Council’s website to view the supporting plans and documentations.
Then write your own views by registering and completing the form on the website, or send them by email to firstname.lastname@example.org or by post to Development Control, Luton Borough Council, Luton, LU1 2BQ.