Everton's hopes of building their new stadium in Walton Hall Park have faced yet another setback thanks recommendations regarding the city's green spaces. Walton Hall Park is one of those green spaces and if Simon O'Brien's recommendations are adopted by the city, then Everton will have to find yet another location for their long awaited stadium.
In short, O'Brien set forth a number of suggestions ahead of submitting his final report. One of those suggestions was that none of the city's public parks should be considered for redevelopment. Since Walton Hall Park was mentioned as a potential home for the new Everton stadium, there has been backlash from environmental groups in the city. However, this particular report was commissioned by the mayor himself and could potentially mean the end of any development in Walton Hall Park.
Everton CEO Robert Elstone's recent feud with Anderson will certainly not help matters either. Elstone seemed to suggest at Everton's AGM that the Liverpool City Council were not working as a partnership with the club. Anderson hit back at Elstone, saying that the CEO's comments were "...not helpful".
There is one faint glimmer of hope in the report. O'Brien went on to say that:
"...the elephant in the room is that in two years time Liverpool has no money to look after its parks, and that is a very stark reality and that is what we have really got to drive into in the final report".
Take that quote for what it's worth, but it certainly sounds as though there may be an opportunity for the club to acquire some of the space, though it is far from certain.
So yet again, the hope of Everton moving away from Goodison Park appear less likely than ever. Stay tuned and we will continue to monitor any developments as they happen.