YORK City fans say they are ‘gutted’ after hearing the new Community Stadium at Monks Cross will not be open in time for the next football season.

Plans for a celebration to mark the final match at Bootham Crescent at the end of this season are being cancelled, said club superfan David Smith.

And he revealed that some supporters were especially disappointed after having arranged to travel from abroad to see the game.

The Press revealed earlier this week that the new 8,000-seater stadium at Monks Cross was due to be open in July, but will not now be ready until August 19 at the earliest.

The stadium is to be the new home ground of York City FC and York City Knights rugby league club. Both currently play home matches at Bootham Crescent.

Mr Smith, 75, of Warrington, who has been following City for 55 years, said: “I know people already who are travelling from Dublin and Norway for the last game.

“We are all absolutely gutted. We were all geared up to have a buffet afterwards at the Burton Lane Working Men’s Club next to the ground - but we won’t bother with that now.”

He said that after years of delays – plans for a new Community Stadium were first mooted in 2003 – the news was just further disappointment for fans.

He said: “I will feel happy when I get on the bus to go to the new stadium – but until that happens there will always be a big, big doubt.

“As far as I can see they are saying it will be ready for August, but not when and I find that hard to understand. Weather-wise, there has been no delay.”

He said new grounds for other clubs such as Chesterfield and Rotherham had been built in half the time it had taken the Community Stadium to be built.

Another supporter of 12 years, Tom Poole, said his reaction to the news was one of ‘overriding disappointment.’

He said he had been a member of a Stadium Working Group which had been holding meetings with club officials about supporters’ facilities at Monks Cross and, at the most recent meeting, assurances had been given that it was on schedule.

Meanwhile, York City has re-assured supporters that they will still be able to hire the Bootham Crescent pitch and dressing rooms in the summer as part of the farewell to Bootham Crescent celebrations, despite the new stadium delays.

“All pitch hire bookings will be honoured this summer,” it said. “Although the bookings will place extra demands on the Bootham Crescent pitch this summer, the club does not feel it right to deny our supporters their final opportunity to play on the ‘hallowed turf’ before moving to Monks Cross.”