A RALLYING call has been sounded that now is the time to get Slough Town FC back in the town as talks continue over the site earmarked for the club’s homecoming.

The Rebels secured promotion to the Southern Premier Division on Monday, beating Kettering Town 3-2 after having been 2-0 down at half-time.

The club is just two leagues away from restoring its Conference league glory days of the 90s.

Council plans to build a new stadium for the club – which currently plays more than 15 miles away in Beaconsfield – in Slough were stalled after the Department for Education demanded a school was built on the site.

But now politicians and supporters are saying: ‘It’s time to come home’.

Council leader Rob Anderson, a Slough Town fan, said: “It is a fantastic achievement for Slough Town FC to get promoted in this way.

“It is a fitting reward for all the hard work people have done to keep the club alive over the last few years. We have never wavered from our commitment to help the club get back to playing in Slough.

“The fact that when they do come home it will be at a higher level is icing on the cake.” Slough Borough Council had drawn up proposals to build the stadium at the former Arbour Vale School site, in Stoke Road, alongside an athletics track, multi-use games area and 88 new homes.

But the club’s dream homecoming was on the verge of being derailed when the Department for Education (DfE) stepped in during March last year, as exclusively revealed by The Observer, to demand the site be used for a new school.

A council spokeswoman said: “We are working with the DfE to find a pragmatic and practical solution to enable both leisure and education provision in the borough.” And Foxborough Cllr Ted Plenty, a Slough Town supporter for 15 years, said: “Officers are working hard to make it happen. I’ve spoken to a lot of people on doorsteps who say they will start supporting the club when it gets back in the town.” Cippenham Green councillor Roger Davis, a Rebels fan since 1973, added: “It’s so important the club comes back home. We will struggle to get the revenue we need to compete in that division [if we stay out of Slough].” The club used to attract crowds of around 1,500 when it played at Wexham Park. It has played outside the borough since 2003.

Cllr Davis said it now averages around 250 per home game, which he said could jump to 500 in Slough. Around 400 Rebels fans were at Kettering for the play-off final.

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