EXCLUSIVE: Lions to leave Milton Keynes after 15 years

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MILTON Keynes will no longer have a professional basketball club, with Lions forced to leave the city after 15 years because they cannot find a place to play.

Chief executive Vince Macaulay has confirmed to the Citizen that Lions have ‘exhausted all options available to them’ in their pursuit of finding a new venue after being kicked out of their previous home in Winterhill – sold by its owners for retail use.

And that has proved to be the final nail in the coffin for Lions in Milton Keynes having previously been booted out of Bletchley Leisure Centre and Middleton Hall in thecentre:mk.

The arena next to stadium:mk has not been made available for the British Basketball League club, with MK Dons chairman Pete Winkelman declaring its use for music and corporate events, although he did say that ‘big basketball games’ could be played there.

But that is not enough for Lions who are determined to find a new permanent home in the city, helping to cater for their hundreds of youth team players who represent Milton Keynes at a national level.

Macaulay says he is in final negotiations with regards to where the club will move to, and that is expected to be revealed by the end of the week.

Lions are due to start the new BBL season with a trip to Manchester Giants on Friday, September 21 before hosting champions Newcastle Eagles just 48 hours later.