THE owner of Bromsgrove Rovers says failure to secure the lease on the club’s century-old home could lead to the “absolute demise” of the 125-year-old football club.

Earlier this year, Bromsgrove District Council offered organisations the chance to bid for the lease on the Birmingham Road-based Victoria Ground, which will become available after August.

Bromsgrove Rovers and a new football team set up in the town, Bromsgrove Sporting, have applied for the lease, and the successful bidder is set to be announced after a meeting of the cabinet being held tomorrow evening, (June 2).

Mike Ward, Bromsgrove Rovers chairman, said it seemed Rovers supporters were unaware how crucial the decision could be to the club's future.

Mr Ward stressed failure to secure the lease could lead to the club being kicked out of Southern League Divisional One South and West.

He said: “The future of Bromsgrove Rovers Football Club lies firmly in the hands of the local council.

“I ask the cabinet members to understand that by not granting a new lease to the club, it will be directly responsible for the demise of the club, its history and the wishes of the original donor, within the covenant to the title of the land.”

The ancient deed of covenant, signed in 1948, sets out the terms under which the ground was donated from a sportsman syndicate, to the council, and states the ground can only be used as a football stadium.

Rob McLaren, a spokesman for Bromsgrove Sporting, said he understood Bromsgrove Rovers were still having financial difficulties, as the club remains in administration, and they offered a more stable option.

“As a not-for-profit company we feel our bid will offer the best for the people of Bromsgrove.

“We represent the spirit of Rovers and are giving people an alternative.”

Bromsgrove District Council leader, Roger Hollingworth, said there were two bids, which would be decided upon by the cabinet.