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Bluebirds grounded again by red tape

STRUGGLING Championship football club Cardiff City will have to submit more planning applications to the local council despite owner Sam Hammam thinking the scheme was a done deal.

Work on the £100 million development was thought to be going ahead in May.Mr Hammam recently described the upcoming hurdles as 'a cup of tea' But planning red tape means the Welsh side has to submit more paperwork to the council next month.

This week a club spokesman admitted three more applications were still required relating to the retail part of the scheme, which will bankroll the stadium's development.Three have already been submitted and approved.

Laing O'Rourke, Miller and Mowlem were shortlisted last April to work up bids for the 30,000-capacity stadium.

But one bidder said he was not hopeful that work would start once the current season ends.He added: 'We haven't heard anything for a while and I can't see work starting as soon as Cardiff City say it will.'

The club had originally hoped for the stadium to be ready for the 2005-06 season but a series of planning delays put this back to the 2006-07 season.The latest delays are pushing this out to 2007-08.