A 61-year-old football club have been saved from threat of closure, after a developer struck a deal to build 20 homes on the site of their ground.

Molesey FC will see their Walton Road pitch moved 15m to increase developable land, allowing Cobham-based Rushmon Homes to build houses on the site.

The development will generate enough money to meet the club’s debts and allow it to continuing playing at the site, along with helping to make improvements to the ground such as floodlights.

Mike Ratcliffe, chairman of Rushmon Homes, had wanted to help the club for a number of years, and was only able to act after securing a multimillion pound loan from Natwest.

Mr Ratcliffe said: “We are delighted to be partnering with Molesey Football Club in order to help ensure its successful long term future. The income from the development means the club can sort out its old debts while at the same time make much needed improvements to the ground.

“The development really is a fantastic example of how to use urban land in tandem with a sports club while at the same time providing a significant contribution to social housing in the area.”

The site will include eight affordable homes, managed by Elmbridge Housing Trust, and 12 houses, which will go on the market in autumn 2014.