Posted: Wed 1st Jun 2022

Wrexham Football Club submit planning application to demolish Kop for people living in or visiting the Wrexham area
This article is old - Published: Wednesday, Jun 1st, 2022

Wrexham Football Club say they are “pleased” to announce that a planning application has been submitted to Wrexham County Borough Council to demolish the Kop and clear the site.

The club say, “This application is the first of three that will be made in respect of the Kop development in June, and needed to be made before the full application, so as to ensure that the timeline for the desired completion of the stand for the start of the 2024/25 season remains achievable.”

“A decision on this application is expected in early July.”

“There is no agreed commencement date for work on site as yet. The initial work will include the stripping out of essential services before the 2022/23 season starts, so the demolition can occur without negatively impacting on the Club’s ability to stage matches at the Racecourse Ground.”

The planning application is not yet public but should emerge shortly.

The ambition for the Kop is to build a new large stand along with enhancing the stadium to enable it to attract top level competitive international standard sport, with UEFA requirements seen as a benchmark to that aim as part of the ‘Gateway’ project.

The multi million pound Wrexham Gateway project is intended to see the regeneration of the Mold Road corridor “creating better connected bus and rail transport, a route into the town centre that gives a great first impression to visitors and an improved events football ground and regional and national venue at the Racecourse stadium”.

The ‘Gateway’ site has been split roughly into two sections, the eastern section which will see an integrated transport hub as part of an improved Wrexham General station with possible redevelopment of the builders merchants yard and potentially the sorting office site to include 150 apartments and retail space.

The western side of the railway sees one of the most substantial projects being the redevelopment of the long derelict Kop stand at the Racecourse and surrounding land, alongside or incorporating an exhibition facility and a four-star standard hotel.

Wrexham Council have been stressing the ‘partnership’ working behind delivering the vision with Wrexham Council, Welsh Government, Wrexham Glyndwr University, the Football Association for Wales, Transport for Wales, Wrexham AFC – and hopefully UK Government all pulling together.

The FAW have been confirmed as a formal partner of the ‘Gateway’ project, noting a commitment to bring the full spectrum of international football to the Racecourse ‘on a regular basis’ – if the stadium is up to it. (As we have previously reported, could this be Wales v Scotland?)

The overall Gateway project is estimated to require a total investment of around £80-£90 million with estimated public sector subsidies of between £40 and £45 million.

Back in 2020 land to the rear of the Kop had been acquired by Welsh Government, and last year they announced a £25m funding package for the eastern part of the project.

Earlier this year the council used some of that money to inject a multi-million pound sum to get the Kop redevelopment project underway, some of which could have been spent on today’s move of clearing the site, ahead of a hopeful second bid for levelling up funding.

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