Leamington FC’s chairman Jim Scott has said he is open to the idea of the club moving into a new stadium after plans were revealed this week - but the final decision will rest with its fans and shareholders.
Last minute adjustments to Warwick District Council’s Local Plan have just gone out for a final six-week public consultation- and these include a site north of Gallows Hill, Warwick, for what is described as a ‘community football stadium’.
This could become Brakes’ new home with Leamington’s current New Windmill Ground in Harbury Lane having been identified as a possible location for a Gypsy and travellers site, if the club decides to move.
Speaking exclusively to the Courier, Mr Scott said: “We have always said that if the move was viable and sustainable and we could take control of our own destiny, we would let the fans and the shareholders make a decision on it.
“We are in ongoing discussions with the council and hopefully this site (on Gallows Hill) will come to fruition, but there is a significant amount of detail yet to be discussed.
“We like the council’s vision for educational facilities and a sports hub which will be of benefit to the community in Leamington and Warwick and once there are some firm proposals we will put it to our fans and shareholders.”
We have reported previously that Warwick District Council had agreed to look into a new stadium somewhere on the land between Leamington and Warwick where thousands of new homes are expected to be built, if the Revised Local Plan is agreed.
District chief executive Chris Elliott has used his emergency powers to delay the submission of the plan until people have one more chance to have their say on the final amendments.
His decision was taken after the publication of the latest Joint Strategic Employment Land Study and an updated Housing Land Availability Assessment which has added 40 acres off Stratford Road, opposite the Chase Meadow estate, into the mix.
The land north of Gallows Hill, near Myton School, was originally intended for employment in the Local Plan.
Now it could provide the new Brakes stadium as part of a sports and community hub, as well as additional housing.
Already there was provision for 1,190 homes west of Europa Way which will rise to 1,300 if the new proposals go ahead. The consultation period runs until December 12, after which the final plan will be formally submitted to Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government.
As well as more housing and facilities at Gallows Hill, an industrial site at Opus 40 on the Birmingham Road, Warwick, is also being proposed to go back into the housing mix.
This is all because of the employment potential offered at Stratford Road, Warwick, by the 40 acres owned by Severn Trent, Warwickshire County Council and Warwick District Council.
Altogether the Local Plan allowed for 12,900 homes up to 2029 - nearly half of which have already been built.
It is the controversial garden suburbs proposed for agricultural land close to Warwick, Whitnash and Bishops Tachbrook that led to the formation of a Save Warwick group.