Select Committee on Culture, Media and Sport Appendices to the Minutes of Evidence

Annex A

Letter, 7 January 2000, from the then Secretary of State to the Chairman of WNSL


  We should place on record our discussion and the conclusions we reached when we met on 22 December.

  We agreed that while it is feasible to hold international athletics events at Wembley this would nonetheless be an expensive compromise rather than an ideal solution, and there would be advantage to football, rugby and athletics if the last were removed from the Wembley formula and provided for in some other way. There is no doubt that Wembley is the best option for a national stadium for football/rugby and that the Foster design will result in the greatest football/rugby stadium in the world.

  The FA had suggested a payback of £20 million if the requirement to stage athletics were removed. The money would need to be repaid as quickly as possible. You made it clear that it would be difficult for the entire sum to be repaid instantly.

  After discussing various possible options for repaying £20 million over a period, it was agreed that the best would be to commence repayments in year 2000, paying £3 million per annum in each of 2000, 2001 and 2002, £5 million in 2003 and £6 million in 2004. However, the FA would use its best endeavours to repay faster as money started to come in from Wembley earlier, and particularly as soon as corporate boxes started to be sold which could be as early as September 2000.

  I should be grateful if you would confirm that this is an accurate record of the main points of our discussion and of the agreement we reached. I am copying this letter to Geoff Thompson at the Football Association.

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