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The club began constructing the new stand on Monday (March 20) at the Sutton End of the Banbury Plant Hire Community Stadium, directly across the pitch from the clubhouse.

The new stand will add a further 226 seats to the stadium’s current 280 and fulfil the 500-seat minimum capacity requirement needed for the club to play in the National League North.

Home fans are expected to use the new stand next season, and the club intends to transport the stand to a new ground when the time comes.

A Crowdfunder page and a named seat initiative, where Puritans members will have a plaque on a seat for £100, have been launched to help pay the £66,000 needed.

To ensure that the full amount of money is recovered in the coming weeks, the club has used existing funds and short-term loans, held a sponsors' fundraising evening, and is looking into community grant awards.

Ronnie Johnson, chairman of Banbury United Football Club, said: "The promotion to the National League North has brought the most positive and historic uplift for the club.

"Behind-the-scenes, it has been a massive step up, bringing unnumerable challenges, which, one by one, our amazing team of volunteers has dealt with throughout the season so far.

"Funding this grandstand is another huge challenge for us, and we see it as a significant opportunity for the club. It makes Banbury United fit for the future and cements our position as being serious about playing in this league: we simply cannot take part in play-offs without 500 seats.

"We are very aware that money is tight for the majority of people at the moment, and this ask is yet another demand on finances. We are a community-owned club, and we are therefore inviting our community to support the club and its future with this one-off investment campaign. We would like our supporters and local businesses to consider making a donation of whatever amount they feel they can afford via our online Crowdfunder page."

To access the Crowdfunder page, visit: https://www.crowdfunder.co.uk/p/project-bufc-grandstand

* Article from Banbury Guardian