YORK'S new community stadium is still on track to be completed by July 2016, despite fears raised about the project's timescale.

York City Knights rugby league club chairman John Guildford has said the team has only a handful of games left to play at their current Huntington Stadium ground after the club was given formal notice to quit ready for the redevelopment earlier this month.

While fears have been raised about the project's timescale after city councillor Sonja Crisp, the cabinet member responsible for the project, confirmed work should start in March next year and the ground will be ready by July 2016, the council have confirmed the scheme is still on track.

Meanwhile, Mr Guildford has said the Knights need to know now the details about the new community stadium to "put minds at rest", but a city council spokesman has moved to reassure people about the project, saying the July 2016 completion date was publicised in April this year, and added that the new ground will be ready for matches to be played after that handover.

A deal to find a builder and operator for the community stadium will include a new outside operator for all the council's leisure services, including Energise and Yearsley Swimming Pool, and negotiations to confirm the operators are still going on, the spokesman added.

Political opponents within the council the Liberal Democrats have also criticised the way decisions over the project have been made "behind closed doors" and without public scrutiny.

But the Labour group have hit back, saying their administration has delivered the stadium while the Liberal Democrats did not deliver either funding or planning permission in their time in power.

Mr Guildford has revealed that while they have been given formal notice to quit Huntington Stadium at the end of this season, they are yet to have a legal agreement over either their temporary stay at York City's Bootham Crescent ground - which was initially for 2015 but now runs to 2016 - or their long-term future at the rebuilt shared ground.