A Merton Council response
Council spokesperson Gene Saunders said:
“Clearly we are disappointed that Safeway has decided to press ahead with its planning application for housing on the former Wimbledon Football Club ground, but they have every right to do so and we understand their position.
“This is by no means the end of our dreams of seeing Wimbledon back at Plough Lane. It is just another hurdle.
“The Council will press ahead with the feasibility study on Plough Lane that we have jointly commissioned with WFC and which is being undertaken through the Football League.
“We will also continue discussions with investors and developers who have expressed an interest in developing Plough Lane.
“It is very clear however that time is now of an essence. We have reached the end game, but we still believe that with the right will and determination Wimbledon will be back at Plough Lane – playing in the Premier Division where it belongs. The Merton community is behind it and football fans and leaders from around the country also want to see Wimbledon back home.
“The time for talking is over. Now is the time to bring the ideas together and get the financing sorted. Soon it will be too late. Or perhaps an imaginative housing development including a football stadium might just be the right answer.”