NORTHWICH Victoria Football Club are in need of a new home ground for next season.

This follows the announcement that the groundshare agreement with Witton Albion will not be renewed by the Northern Premier League outfit beyond the current campaign, consequently leaving Vics homeless.

It is the latest setback in turbulent modern history for The Trickies, who had to rebuild their squad at short notice under new manager Steve Pickup during the summer after losing an appeal to the FA's decision to reallocate the club to the Midland League Premier Division from the North West Counties League.

A members' meeting has been scheduled for Friday night.

Vics' chiefs are weighing up ground options in and around Northwich for the 2024-25 season, while Albion's bosses said the decision to take a new direction was necessary for the growth of their club as a whole.

Graham Wood, chairman of Witton Albion, said: “The club have decided, after due consideration, not to renew our ground sharing agreement with Northwich Victoria Football Club which has existed since March 2018.

"This has not been an easy decision and has been taken to allow us to establish a women’s team and a reserves/under 21s team as part of our joint approach with Witton Albion Juniors, Witton Albion Academy and our ESPFL team based at Sandbach to develop a full pathway for anyone interested in grassroots football.

"We also have a commitment through our registered charity, Witton Albion in the Community, to develop other aspects of football in the community.

"This vision is simply not possible without the availability of our pitch for our sole use."

He added: "We wish our friends at Northwich Victoria all the best in the future and would like to express our thanks to Ian Egerton and in particular to Brian Turner and the rest of their volunteers who have assisted us admirably with maintaining our ground since 2018.”

Ian Egerton, who took over from Brian Turner as chairman of Northwich Victoria at the beginning of June, said: “Whilst disappointed, Northwich Victoria would like to place on record our sincere thanks to everyone involved at Witton Albion especially Graham Wood and Julian Jackson and fully understand Witton’s desire to go into a different route with the ladies football and the possibility of an U21’s team.

"We have thoroughly enjoyed our time at Witton and have made many friends along the way and we wish Witton Albion every success in the future.

"As a football club, Northwich Victoria will now look at possible ground options in the local area as it remains vital that we stay as close to or within Northwich as possible.

"There will be an important members’ meeting this coming Friday at the Cheshire FA for our members to discuss our options. Therefore we urge everyone that can make it to arrive for 7pm. New members can join on the night for £35.”

Vics are currently bottom of the Midland League Premier Division following their summer rebuild for a season that has brought higher travelling distances for away games against non-traditional rivals, increasing club and supporters' expenses.

Now the club is facing a fight on and off the field again in a century that has brought constant battles and complications with going into administration, various groundshare deals, changes in ownership and management, a fanbase split and relegations.

Vics recently played their FA Vase first qualifying round home tie against Selby at Winsford United's Barton Stadium, due to the unavailability of the U Lock It Stadium on the day the match needed to be played.

Since being evicted from the short-lived Victoria Stadium in 2012, the new home built after the Drill Field was demolished in 2002, they have also called on Stafford's Marston Road, Flixton's Valley Road and Barnton's Townfield as home venues for spells.

1874 Northwich currently groundshare at Townfield and previously had a similar arrangement with Winsford United.