CHRIS Reeves has confirmed Poole Town are in talks with Hamworthy United over a proposed ground share.

But Dolphins’ vice-chairman admits he is “not optimistic’ negotiations between the two clubs will bear fruit.

Wessex League title favourites Poole are trying to arrange a ground share at the County Ground with their Premier Division rivals.

Reeves’ outfit requires a new home to boost hopes of promotion because their Tatnam Farm venue does not meet Southern League ground-grading criteria.

The County Ground is not up to Southern League standards either.

It is understood, however, very little upgrading work, at a relatively low cost, is required to make the venue acceptable to stage matches at the higher level.

Asked about speculation linking Poole with a proposal to share the County Ground, Reeves said: “We have spoken to Hamworthy United, but I’m not optimistic anything will happen there.

“We are talking to a number of other clubs as well, but we haven’t reached anything definitive yet.”

Reeves added: “We’re still working on sorting out a ground share arrangement and are confident we will.”

Hammers chairman Bruce Scammell is remaining tight-lipped on Poole’s proposal.

He declined to comment on the issue, although it is understood negotiations are still ongoing between the two parties despite Reeves’ admission he isn’t optimistic a deal can be struck.

Poole, who have missed out on promotion twice because of ground-grading rules, spent a brief spell ground sharing with Hamworthy United in the mid-90s.

But the County Ground arrangement was temporary and only lasted from late October 1994 until the end of the 1995-96 season.

Then, the Dorset Football Association council blocked Poole’s permanent use of the ground, deciding “it is not a satisfactory arrangement for two clubs to share one pitch on a longer term basis”.

Poole Borough Council owns the County Ground site, leasing it out to the DCFA, whose offices are next to the pitch.

The DCFA, in turn, sublease the venue to Hamworthy United.

So Dolphins would also have to gain the approval of DCFA chiefs before their ground sharing proposal could be accepted.

More importantly, perhaps, Poole Town officials must win the backing of Hammers management and fans, who may harbour doubts about ground sharing, particularly with their side sitting pretty in sixth place, just four spots below Dolphins, in the same division as their rivals.