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News & Comment

Tottenham take legal action over 2012 stadium

Tottenham are taking Olympic chiefs to court over the decision to hand the 2012 stadium to West Ham after the Games, the BBC reported today.

The Olympic Park Legacy Company (OPLC), which picked West Ham as its preferred bidder ahead of Spurs to move into the stadium, confirmed Tottenham are going ahead with a judicial review.

The north London club told the OPLC of their decision this week, as construction on the Olympic Stadium was completed.

An OPLC spokesman said: "We can confirm that a letter before action in relation to potential judicial review proceedings has been issued.

"The Olympic Park Legacy Company ran a very rigorous and transparent process in its selection of the recommended preferred bidder.

"We have been supported by independent experts in their field in terms of legal, financial, commercial and technical advice.

"We have been consistent, fair, objective and entirely equal in our dealings with the bidders from start to finish.

"We are confident that if these judicial review proceedings are pursued, our approach will be entirely vindicated by the courts."

Should Spurs initiate a review, a judge will have to decide whether the process to award West Ham the stadium was legal.

Tottenham originally planned to move to a 56,000 ground next to their current home in Haringey before bidding for the Olympic Stadium became an option.

A number of Spurs fans bitterly opposed the proposed move to move to East London, insisting that the club should stay in N17 as part of the original plan, which was called the Northumberland Development Project.

Tottenham MP David Lammy has always supported the idea of Spurs staying in Haringey and even lobbied for for the area around White Hart Lane to be part of an enterprise zone in order to persuade the club to stay there.

He said today: "I'm deeply disappointed that Spurs are still looking to move to Stratford.

"A judicial review is a costly and lengthy process that will only line the pockets of lawyers, leaving the club, its fans and the Tottenham community in limbo.

"We have made real progress in the last few weeks to kickstart the redevelopment at White Hart Lane.

"We have got a Mayoral Development Corporation and we want an enterprise zone to boost Spurs.

"I'm calling on both sides - the club and the government - to come back together to work out how to get the Northumberland Development Project back on the road.

"That is what fans want, it is what Tottenham wants and it is what London wants."

West Ham have yet to make a comment on today's developments.