Barnet FC’s former stadium in Underhill has been sold - with plans underway for a new school on the site.

The club confirmed the site, where The Bees spent 106 years before leaving in 2013, has been sold to the Education Funding Agency.

A planning application to build a new school on the site will soon be submitted.

Barnet FC said it had been prohibited from making a public statement previously for legal reasons, and felt it better to wait until after the election, given the "long-standing affiliation and affection" many voters have for the football club.

In a statement on the club website, chairman Anthony Kleanthous said: “Barnet will of course always be our true and traditional home, and it goes without saying that everybody connected with the club will always hold dear the countless memories that we have from the unforgettable years at Underhill.

“To meet the fast-changing needs of modern football we were wholly reliant on the support of Barnet Council to help find us somewhere to build a new stadium and before moving to The Hive I spent 20 long years trying to win that support.”

Mr Kleanthous said political control of Barnet Council has always been on a "knife edge”, with many of the club’s problems stemming from continual changing politics at the helm.

He said the final straw was the council’s decision to give the Copthall site to another club for free, which he said left Barnet with "no hope" for a future stadium in the borough.

The club moved into Harrow in 2013, and now plays at The Hive, in Camrose Avenue, Edgware.

Mr Kleanthous said: “It’s disappointing that local councillors were unable or unwilling to fight to keep the greatest sporting community asset this borough could have hoped for but that’s history now and we have moved on to pastures new, starting a new chapter at The Hive."

Stalwart supporters launched a 'Back to Barnet' campaign two years ago, in a bid to bring the club back to the borough.

Mr Kleanthous said: “Although I have always fully supported the ‘Back to Barnet’ campaign, following over two years of fundraising and campaigning I think it would be fair to say that its probably time to move on.

“There can be no doubt that Barnet FC currently find themselves in a much better place than when we left Underhill in April 2013 and hope one day we will return but cannot see this in either the short or medium term."

Mr Kleanthous added: “I have never allowed myself to be diverted in my devotion and duty to the club, and as a result feel that it is best that we all now focus on making our new home here at The Hive as comfortable as possible. We need to build on the positive momentum and focus on the future not the past.

“We are coming off the back off a hugely positive season that will live long in the memory, and now find ourselves in a strong position to capitalise on that recent success and push even higher up the Football League.

“Plans for the new season are already well underway with the manager being provided with funds to make the signings that he feels can help the team push for another promotion.

“What we need now is for all of our fantastic supporters to get behind Martin, the players and the club as we enter into what I have no doubt will be a hugely exciting future for Barnet FC.”