The Board of Wrexham AFC can announce plans for a new 5,000 capacity, all-seater stand at the Kop end of the Racecourse Ground have taken a big step forward.
Following last summer’s joint statement launching the vision for the new Wrexham Gateway Project, the four partners – the Welsh Government, Wrexham County Borough Council Wrexham Glyndŵr University and Wrexham AFC – have continued to work collaboratively on the plans and the steps needed to achieve them.
Following that work, the group have agreed the plans are feasible and, with the necessary finances in place – which are realistic to achieve – long-standing plans for the area could come to reality.
Furthermore, Ken Skates - the Welsh Government's minister for North Wales - has approved the budget provision for initial site acquisitions associated with the proposals, marking another step forward for the project.
As well as the new Kop stand, it has been confirmed the plans include a four-star hotel, conferencing facility and improvements to Wrexham General train station – designed to facilitate improved access to the town centre, the football club and Glyndwr University.
Following the latest update, Wrexham AFC director Spencer Harris stated his excitement at the scale of the proposed plans.
He said: “The Racecourse Ground is of strategic importance to Wrexham, North Wales and indeed the whole of Wales.
“It is very exciting to know that, after many years of speculation, plans to turn the ground into a 15,000-seat international level venue, are set to be taken forward.
“It's very encouraging to see the commitment of all the partners and the scale of the regeneration that together we are determined to bring to Wrexham.”
The Wrexham Gateway Project would see the capacity of the Racecourse increased to over 15,000, returning the world’s oldest international football stadium to its full four-sided glory.
Cllr Mark Pritchard, Leader of Wrexham Borough Council, said: “I am very pleased that plans are progressing very well and that the ambitious proposals set out last year are feasible.
“I would like to thank our partners for their support thus far and to assure them of our commitment to achieving the ambitious plans we have laid out.”
Ken Skates, Welsh Government Minister for Economy, Transport and North Wales, who visited the area recently, said: “The Wrexham Gateway project is a clear demonstration of our commitment to bringing forward the redevelopment of the area.
"I am pleased to approve the budget provision for initial site acquisitions and I look forward to seeing this important project move forward.”
Maria Hinfelaar, Vice-Chancellor of Wrexham Glyndŵr University added: “I am very pleased to be working with our partners to create a very much improved gateway into Wrexham that will provide visitors, students and residents to Wrexham with an excellent view of the town and a superb gateway into the town itself.
"The Wrexham Gateway Partnership dovetails with the University's Campus 2025 Masterplan and it is exciting to see how we can work together to transform the town."