13 December 2017: 5:40 pm
Dons return home
AFC Wimbledon fans will cheer their team from a £25 million stadium complex on Plough Lane, after Merton Council granted planning permission for the development on Wednesday.
The League One club, council, and developer Galliard Homes signed a Section 106 agreement on Wednesday 13 December, priming the way for work to start at the site of the old Wimbledon Greyhound Stadium early next summer, with hopes for completion in time for the 2019/20 season.
In addition, 602 homes, retail space and a squash and fitness club will make up the 90,000sq m development.
AFC Wimbledon chief executive Erik Samuelson said: "Everyone in football knows the story of how we came into being.
"A group of fans started with nothing; no ground, no team, no manager, no players and no kit. Now, fifteen 15 years later, we’ve taken a giant step towards going home to Merton, in a new stadium and as a football league club."
Leader of Merton Council, Stephen Alambritis, said: "After a long journey, this is a proud moment and a historic moment for Merton.
Our experienced planning officers have spent a great deal of time and effort to ensure this exciting development will benefit both the greatly loved club AFC Wimbledon, as well as Merton and the many families and fans who live here.
"I look forward to seeing the stadium and housing become a reality over the coming months and can’t wait to see the first game. Welcome home AFC Wimbledon."