Clubs lose case over 2012 stadium

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Bids by Tottenham and Leyton Orient for a judicial review to block West Ham's move to the Olympic Stadium were rejected on Thursday by a High Court judge.

They started the legal battle after the Olympic Park Legacy Company (OPLC) board voted 14-0 in February to make the Hammers the first choice to move in to the £486 million stadium.

Mr Justice Davis rejected Tottenham and Leyton Orient's application to seek a judicial review. Both clubs could still make another legal challenge.

A spokesman for the OPLC, which is in charge of securing the future of the Olympic Park after the Games, said: "The court has decided to refuse both Tottenham Hotspur and Leyton Orient permission to pursue a judicial review challenge in relation to Legacy Company's decision to select a preferred bidder for the Olympic Stadium.

"We are pleased with the ruling and continue to make good progress in our negotiations with the preferred bidder in order to be in a position to agree the final terms for the stadium's lease."

Tottenham lost a head-to-head contest with West Ham to become the new tenant of the stadium in Stratford, east London.

West Ham, in a joint bid with Newham Council, intend to convert the 80,000-seater stadium into a 60,000-capacity facility which retains an athletics track. The club plans to move from Upton Park in 2014/15 with a 250-year lease, and give a 250-year lease to UK Athletics (UKA).

Newham Council has arranged a £40 million loan to finance West Ham's move to the stadium after the 2012 Games.

Tottenham's plans, part of a joint bid with AEG sport and entertainment group, had been to create a football-only stadium without the track and redevelop Crystal Palace for athletics.

The OPLC's choice of West Ham as preferred bidder has also been rubber-stamped by the Government and London mayor Boris Johnson.

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Tottenham Hotspur
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