'Wembley project put public funds at risk'
The Wembley Stadium project has been slammed by the House of Commons Public Accounts Committee for putting public funding at risk.
Sport England was criticised for handing over £120m of public funding (through the National Lottery) with no guarantee that the Football Association would guarantee or underwrite the grant if the project collapsed.
The committee found that best procurement practice had not been followed on what is a ‘high profile project with significant public sector financial support’.
The old Wembley Stadium should have been left standing to host events that could have financed repayment of the grant and until the full financing package for the project had been secured, MPs said.
Deciding to keep an athletics track within the design of the project was found to be merely a ‘device’ to keep £20m in the project that the Football Association would otherwise been happy to repay.