Bury fans group completes purchase of Gigg Lane

Supporters of Bury FC have completed a deal to purchase the club’s former Gigg Lane stadium, which will become a community asset.

Fans group Est. 1885 confirmed in a statement it had closed the purchase of Gigg Lane from Bury FC administrator Steven Wiseglass. The group has also acquired the trading name, history and memorabilia of Bury FC, which was expelled from the English Football League (EFL) in 2019.

The 12,000-seat Gigg Lane had served as the home of Bury since opening in 1885 but it has not staged any matches since the club’s expulsion from the EFL. The last match at Gigg Lane was the 1-1 draw against Port Vale at the end of the 2018-19 season, which saw Bury promoted to League One.

Following Bury’s expulsion from the EFL, a phoenix club named Bury AFC was formed by fans. The club plays in North West Counties League First Division North and is currently top of the table.

In a statement released on Friday, Est. 1885 confirmed that Gigg Lane will undergo refurbishment following the group’s acquisition of the stadium. Est. 1885 and fellow fan group Forever Bury have committed to finding a “consensual path” with Bury AFC, with discussions between the three parties to restart this week.

Following the completion of the deal, the stadium and assets will belong to Gigg Lane Stadium Limited, a new company set up by fans of the club.

“We are delighted that this transaction has been successfully completed,” Wiseglass said, according to the Manchester Evening News.

“It is a fantastic outcome for the fans, the club and the whole town, as it will hopefully bring football back to Gigg Lane. My hope all along has always been that Bury FC could be rescued. Bury is blessed with a passionate and dedicated group of supporters and we wish them well for the future.”

Gigg Lane had been up for sale since last May.

Image: Dom Fellowes/CC BY 2.0/Edited for size