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Darlington to Play at Shildon

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Darlington, relegated from the Blue Square Bet Premier, are going to groundshare with STL Northern League neighbours Shildon next season.

Shildon were one of five Northern League clubs who offered a helping hand, and yesterday the Quakers announced that they will be playing home games – probably in the Evo-Stik Northern Premier League – at Dean Street.

Spokesman Craig McKenna said: “DFC 1883 Ltd are delighted to announce that a groundshare agreement has been signed with Shildon FC.

“An agreement is now in place for Darlington FC to use the facilities at Shildon FC as our home ground for the 12/13 season, and is a one year lease.

“It is common practice in deals such as these for commercial terms to be kept confidential but as Darlington FC is now a community owned club we are aware that it is entirely appropriate for some details to be made public. Rent for the year will be £25,000 inclusive of all costs, all gate receipts will come to Darlington FC and Shildon FC will be entitled to a share of the bar take.

“This is a good deal for both sides and we are looking forward to a great working relationship with all at Shildon.

“We would also like to thank Bishop Auckland for the courtesy shown to us during our discussions, they offered an excellent alternative to Shildon, but ultimately we feel that the parking and travel options at Shildon are better for the majority of our fans.

“We had hoped to have been able to discuss this with the fans at the forum on Friday night but unfortunately time pressures relating to the submission of the lease with the FA made delaying until Friday impractical.”

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About Author

Former Swansea City and Kettering Town defender who has been managing the likes of Kettering Town u18s, Rothwell Town, Desborough Town and Wellingborough Town for 33 years as well as being technical director at AFC Rushden & Diamonds. Began in non-League journalism as editor of Team Talk magazine back in the early 1990s and then as editor of Non-League Daily, joining Pitchero to set up Pitchero Non-League in January 2011. Also works for the National League.

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