Saturday, 13 December 2008 11:35

Wrexham FC reveal new Racecourse Ground plans

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Wrexham FC reveal new Racecourse Ground plans

THE blueprint for a major £40m investment to transform Wrexham FCs finances and lead to the rebuilding of the clubs historic Kop is revealed today.

The Daily Post publishes the first pictures of how Dragons bosses want their Racecourse stadium to look under a development that will create at least 100 local jobs.

The club has lodged revised plans for a £40m Glyndwr University village with space for 800 students, the income from which it is hoped will clear the clubs massive £3-£4m debts.

Any further profit would then be used to finance the rebuilding of the historic Kop stand, which is currently out of action.

 But it could be 2012 before the new stand is built, as the clubs long awaited plans yesterday rely on two earlier phases to create the student accommodation, known as Wrexham Village.

Phase one of the plans yesterday lodged with Wrexham council will create more than 520 student bedrooms on Crispin Lane, to be completed in September 2011 with an access road.

The club have applied for full planning permission for this phase of the grounds re-vamp, on land it owns off Mold Road.

The club have also applied for outline planning permission to build a further 320 units Phase two and outline planning permission for the new stand to replace the old Kop Phase three.

Yesterday Wrexham Supporters Trust vice-chairman Peter Jones welcomed the proposal.

But he wanted assurance the new stand would have a 4,500 capacity to give it international status.

Club director Paul Retout pledged only to employ local workers on the build, and said the ultimate aim was a state of the art facility for fans.

But the club could not provide precise details of how the finances would break down.

Mr Retout could not yet put a figure on how much the surplus income from the student village to be pumped back into the club might be. To build a new stand the club would need millions.

Racecourse bosses hope some of that cash could come from the Assembly government.

The artist impressions show how the new stand replacing the Kop, phase three, may look from the outside with the student village around it.

Yesterday club chiefs said they have not finalised any details how it may look inside or its capacity.

Mr Retout promised all jobs generated by the development would go to local tradesmen, and there will also be jobs for staff to run the completed venture.

Mr Retout said: This is a really positive step for the club and the community at large, as we are adding investment into Wrexham as a whole and pushing the club in the right direction.

Previous plans to build the student village hit a major stumbling block because there was no parking for students.

Yesterday Mr Retout confirmed the new design includes provision for about 100 parking spaces.

Wrexham Village will finance the future of Wrexham Football Club as all profits from Wrexham Village is going back into the club securing the future, with the aim of paying off all current debts and putting working capital into the club, said Mr Retout.

This continued investment will help to meet the long term aspirations of the board and club.

Supporters club spokesman Mr Jones said: These plans have more student blocks than we have seen in previous plans which can only be good for the club because it will generate more revenue.

But we want to see any plans for the new stand to have a 4,500 capacity so it would give it international status.

We just hope the plans are acceptable for the council so that the club can get the facilities it requires to take it forward.

Peter Rhodes, Head of Estates at Glyndwr University said it supported the application, which now has to go before councillors before Wrexham FC can start work.