Coventry & Warwickshire

Coventry City in talks with rugby club over possible ground-share

Coventry Rugby Butts Park Image copyright Google
Image caption Butts Park Arena is currently home to Coventry Rugby Football Club, as well as the city's semi-professional Rugby League side Coventry Bears, who play in Championship One

Coventry City has confirmed it has held talks with the city's rugby club over a potential ground-sharing deal.

A Sky Blues spokesman said the club was considering moving to Coventry Rugby Club's Butts Park Arena.

The League 1 side has two years left on its agreement to play home matches at the Ricoh Arena.

Rugby club chairman Jon Sharp said both sides were looking at the "feasibility" of the plans and talking to architects over possible expansion of the stadium.

'Natural extension'

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Butts Park could be redesigned to have between 15,000 and 25,000 seats, he said, but if it helped improve the rugby club's facilities and gave the football team a permanent home the deal would "make sense".

"The two clubs have been talking for couple of years about training together and community work - this is [a] natural extension of that," he said.

Mr Sharp added talks were still at an early stage, and that no timescale had been put on the plans, which he said would probably take at least two years.

Coventry City have played at the Ricoh Arena since leaving Highfield Road in 2005, and shared it with rugby union side Wasps since 2014.

The Ricoh has been the centre of several legal battles, and the Sky Blues were forced to play their home games for the 2013/14 season in Northampton after a rent dispute with the stadium's owners.

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