North East Wales

Glyndwr University discusses bid to buy into Racecourse

Glyndŵr University
Image caption Glyndŵr University is a few hundred metres from the Racecourse ground

Glyndwr University is discussing plans which could see it buy into Wrexham FC's Racecourse ground, BBC Wales has learned.

As a charity, the university could not take responsibility for the team, but it is in discussions about the ground, and the Gresford training facility.

It is not clear whether the university wants to buy the ground outright, or with partners.

Wrexham FC owners Geoff Moss and Ian Roberts visited Glyndwr on Friday.

A Glyndwr University spokesperson said: "Glyndwr University is part of continuing discussions about the future of the Racecourse ground and the Gresford training facility.

"As a charity, Glyndwr University is bound by regulations pertaining to charitable bodies and as such is unable to take any responsibility for Wrexham AFC or the Crusaders Rugby League Team.

'Future survival'

"The university is keen to ensure that the stadium and training ground are used for the purpose of sport, educational users and as a community asset to cater for the existing users of the stadium and the people of Wrexham and North Wales.

"The university can offer no further comment at this stage."

Last week, Wrexham Supporters' Trust (WST) said it was set to make an offer to buy the club, the Racecourse ground and the training ground "with the aid of third parties".

It is not clear how the trust's offer might be affected if the university launched a sole bid to buy the ground, or a share in it.

A spokesman declined to comment on whether it was talking to the university, but added: "Wrexham Supporters' Trust has been, and is, in talks with all parties who are interested in the future survival of Wrexham Football Club and its assets."

Wrexham Village, the holding company which owns Wrexham FC, also owns the Racecourse and the club's training facility.

Owners Geoff Moss and Ian Roberts visited the university on Friday.

There have been twists and turns over the future ownership of the club and ground since the start of the year.

The owners announced the Blue Square Premier club was for sale in January, and WST has been interested in a deal from the start.

It was part of a joint bid with local hotelier Stephanie Booth before she later withdrew her offer.

In May, businessman Colin Poole pledged cash for a takeover with the WST having a 25.1% share, before he also pulled out.

Since then, WST has been in talks over a full takeover putting the club into community ownership.

If the university bought into the ground, it could follow a similar arrangement in West Yorkshire, where Leeds Metropolitan University contributed £14m towards a new pavilion at the Headingley stadium.

The Carnegie Pavilion, which opened last year, is used as a cricket pavilion and media centre during the season, and a teaching facility for the university during the academic year.

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