Wales

Wrexham AFC: New Kop stand and conference venue in master plan

Wrexham council chief executive Ian Bancroft, Wrexham AFC director Spencer Harris, Welsh Economy Minister Ken Skates, Prof Maria Hinfelaar of Glyndwr University, and Wrexham council leader Mark Pritchard Image copyright Wrexham County Borough Council
Image caption Partners in the master plan: Wrexham council chief executive Ian Bancroft, Wrexham AFC director Spencer Harris, Welsh Economy Minister Ken Skates, Prof Maria Hinfelaar of Glyndwr University and Wrexham council leader Mark Pritchard

A new conference venue and 5,000-seat Kop end stand at Wrexham's Racecourse football ground are at the centre of a new master plan unveiled for the town.

A four-star hotel is also planned and Wrexham General railway station's role as a transport hub would be boosted.

Wrexham council leader Mark Pritchard said the aim was to regenerate Mold Road, a major route into the town.

The Welsh Government, football club and Glyndwr University all back the plan although funding has yet to be agreed.

Councillor Pritchard said: "There is a new want and desire to improve Wrexham as a place and as a region.

"Wrexham Football Club has been let down in the past by individuals and things that are outside our control.

"For the first time, the right people are around the table and we can deliver this, subject to the funding."

The conference venue would be built below the new stand, instead of the previously suggested museum of football which is now earmarked for Wrexham Museum in the town centre.

Image caption The Kop has been closed for years on safety grounds, cutting the ground's capacity by a third

A new Kop stand was previously promised by the football's club's former owners Geoff Moss and Ian Roberts, along with student accommodation.

However, while hundreds of flats were built on part of the club's car park, the new seating was never delivered, leading to anger among supporters, according to the Local Democracy Reporting Service.

Wrexham AFC, currently playing in the National League, is now owned by a supporters' trust.

Director Spencer Harris said the club was "extremely excited about this regeneration project including the potential to make the stadium a viable option for international events".

Prof Maria Hinfelaar, vice chancellor of Glyndwr University, said the project would feed into a £60m revamp of its main campus nearby.

"The Mold Road regeneration will create a much improved gateway into Wrexham for residents, students and visitors," she said.

The proposals will be discussed by the council's ruling executive board on Tuesday, with a feasibility study to be completed by the autumn.

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