Councillors in Oswestry have voted to write to Shropshire Council to discover answers about a 'legacy grant' paid to The New Saints football club.

The issue was raised at the town council's full meeting last Monday night by investigator Paul Wiseman, who said he was acting for clients concerned about the nature of the money given to TNS by Shropshire Council.

Mr Wiseman alleged that Shropshire Council awarded a grant of £80,000 to TNS, which was viewed as a legacy grant as per State Aid rules, to help them upgrade seating facilities for future Champions League game, with the first payment due in January 2013 to a third party, which was supposed to be Oswestry Town Council.

The issue was originally set to be heard as part of the private session, but town clerk David Preston explained that while it is a Shropshire Council matter, Oswestry is linked to the issue so any conversations should be heard in public.

He handed out a document to councillors which summarised the issue and in it, he stated the council was not involved in the grant negotiations but as a member of the Joint Economic Board, were informed that the arrangement with TNS would be refunded over a period of five years of £16,000 per year to the town council.

He also stated that £10,000 was paid back in the first year.

However, Mr Wiseman alleged this money has not been paid back and 'as council tax payers, we deserve to know'.

Mr Preston added: "The town council has always viewed itself as open and transparent but had it not been (by staying in private), there would have been a follow-up question in the next public session.

"There would have been further consequences."

Councillors agreed to move it into the public session; however, Oswestry mayor Councillor Vince Hunt told members there could not be a debate if they did not know full details.

Cllr Chris Schofield proposed the council refer the issue to Shropshire for more details.

He added: "They're allegations so there’s nothing much else we can do other than ask Shropshire Council for an answer."

A Shropshire Council spokesman said: "Shropshire Council awarded a grant to New Saints FC Limited in May 2012 as part of the Market Towns Revitalisation Programme. This grant was to help fund a new stand to increase the stadium's capacity for international competition and to create new jobs at The Venue.

"The grant agreement stated that the project will deliver grants of £16,000 per annum over a period of five years for purposes to be agreed by the Oswestry Joint Economic Board. The Board agreed to award £10,000 to fund a Start Up Britain project which was delivered in the town.

"New Saints FC Limited paid £10,000 to cover the costs of this project. No further projects have been approved by the Oswestry Joint Economic Board.”

Ian Williams, chief operating officer at TNS, added: "The New Saints Football Club Limited were awarded a grant of £80,000 from the Market Town Revitalisation Programme (MTRP) in May 2012 towards the costs of installing a stand to seat an additional 500 spectators at Park Hall Stadium and we confirm that the club has fully met all of the grant outputs and deliverables outlined in the Grant Funding Agreement."