It’s your vote

Will you be supporting Hartlepool United’s offer of a friendly to help out stricken rivals Darlington?

HARTLEPOOL United chairman Ken Hodcroft has reiterated his threat that owners IOR could withdraw its backing should the council refuse to sell Victoria Park to the club.

The Clarence Road ground has been home to Pools since 1908, but the club’s owners only lease the ground off Hartlepool Council and long-running negotiations have been going on to try and buy the site.

Speaking on the BBC’s football programmne Late Kick-Off last night, Hodcroft suggested IOR could reach a point where it decided not to pump any more cash into the club if an agreement can’t be reached.

He said: “We took on a lease when we took over the club and that’s for 65 years, of which 50 is left.

“We pay an annual rent to the council.

“The main thing is for the council to recognise this is not their crown jewels – it’s an economic benefit for the town, the people of Hartlepool and the region.

“If we can’t look after our own business here after 13 or 14 years then there may be a time when the owners say they’re not prepared to invest anymore.

“We don’t want that to happen but we have to be realistic about these things.

“Investing £13m in a development that is not yours? I don’t think many businesses would do that.”

Today we ask: Will you be supporting Hartlepool United’s offer of a friendly to help out stricken rivals Darlington?