TRUST ACTS TO SAFEGUARD RACECOURSE STADIUM
Wrexham Supporters Trust (WST) has written formally to the local authority requesting that the Racecourse Stadium be clearly identified in the Local Development Plan (LDP) as an area which is reserved for community leisure activities.
The letter highlights the Racecourse Stadiums importance to North Wales as the only Stadium capable of hosting international standard sporting events in the region and also its historical status as the oldest international football stadium in the world.
The LDP provides a framework for development in an area by designating the uses a piece of land can be put to.
A WST spokesman stated;
We have had a mandate from the members to do this since the 2005 AGM, however the LDP process itself was delayed. Should our proposal be adopted by the local authority then it will provide a huge measure of security for the future of the stadium.
The LDP will not come into force until 2011 , however any decisions taken regarding development will be regarded as material in any future planning application.
The Letter In Full
19th June 2008
Wrexham County Borough Council,
WREXHAM LOCAL DEVELOPMENT PLAN 2006-2021
The Wrexham Supporters Trust request that the Racecourse Stadium, Mold Road, Wrexham, should be clearly identified in the LDP as an area which is reserved for leisure activities in particular in its role as the Stadium in North Wales for hosting international sporting events and major cultural programmes. The stadium has been used for this purpose since 1877 and the current pitch since the turn of the last century.
The North Wales Economic Forum has identified the Stadium as the regional venue for events such as international football, rugby and other team events. This theory is borne out by the stadium currently being used as one of only four venues in Wales for the junior World Cup Rugby tournament and the only venue in North Wales. The North Wales Economic Forum has adopted the N. Wales sports strategy which singles out the Racecourse Ground for this purpose. At that time the Welsh Assembly Minister for Sport, Culture and the Welsh Language accepted this document formally as the basis for WAG policy development relating to North Wales and sport and physical activity. To secure the ground through the Local Development Plan is therefore in line with national policy.
The Welsh Assembly Governments position is that looking at Wales as a whole, it is important that the residents in the North should be able to access such major events in their own region and not be reliant on venues in South Wales. The importance of this policy position is reinforced by the physical activity and health and well-being agendas in particular the opportunity to see at first hand the ‹Å“stars of Welsh sport has a cathartic effect on young people and children in terms of raising their enthusiasm to be active themselves.
Strategically the location of the Racecourse Stadium in Wrexham is ideal for a twenty-first century venue for international sport in particular in relation to the transport infrastructure. The Stadium is close to the main road routes and, perhaps more importantly in terms of environmentally less-damaging transportation methods, is adjacent to the railway station and the national train network and is within walking distance of the central bus station.
Whilst being conveniently located in logistical terms, the Stadium is also well-sited to allow pedestrian access to the supporting facilities of the town itself food and refreshment premises, hotels and general shops.
From a Wrexham viewpoint, the loss of such a facility in the County Borough would have an all too obvious effect in terms of:-
- economic impact;
- promotional awareness re: Wrexham across the international community;
- the health and well being of the County Borough.
- landmark entrance to an important artery into the town
- damage Wrexhams aspirations to City status
We would also like to point to the civic pride that the residents of Wrexham have in this impressive facility and particularly as we write this in a week in which the Stadium has secured a record. It has been confirmed that the Racecourse Stadium is the oldest International football stadium in the world that is still in use today.
The Wrexham Supporters Trust would therefore request that for the powerful reasons detailed in this letter that the Racecourse Stadium be included as detailed in the Local Development Plan and secured for generations to come. We would be grateful if you are able to acknowledge receipt of our correspondence.
Wrexham Supporters Trust