Demolition threat for Ennis stadium

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Jessica Ennis has no plans to leave Sheffield even if the city’s Don Valley Stadium is demolished, according to her coach Toni Minichiello.

Olympic heptathlon champion Ennis shares her training between the outdoor Don Valley Stadium and the indoor English Institute of Sport nearby. A council document says it could save £500,000 per year if the stadium closed, but the council insist that is only one of hundreds of possible money-saving options.

“We use Don Valley regularly on Sunday and Monday and it forms a substantial part of our training,” said Minichiello. “It’s shocking that they are talking about demolishing it and it would make things very difficult for us, but, like anything, you find a way. Jess will not leave Sheffield. The sad thing is it destroys any kind of legacy and no one else like Jess will be able to come through there.”

Ennis already travels to Leeds for javelin training under Mick Hill, although that involves university facilities which may not always be available, while other options include Doncaster and Rotherham. Sheffield City Council faces making budget cuts of £50million in 2013-14, on top of £140m of cuts made in the last two years.