PLYMOUTH is set to cement its status as a city with an unrivalled leisure and sporting destination in the South West......now that a £50 million regeneration plan for Higher Home Park - including a brand new grandstand for Plymouth Argyle - has secured planning permission.
City councillors on the planning committee were commended on Thursday, August 15 by the developer applicant Akkeron Leisure for recognising that Plymouth can shake off its ‘Cinderella’ image and offer top class sporting and recreational facilities for local people and visitors.
Argyle Chairman James Brent said: “Securing planning consent is an important milestone and heralds a new and exciting chapter for Plymouth.
"I would like to put on record my sincere thanks to the overwhelming number of individuals and representative groups who worked with us on the shaping of the scheme and for supporting what we want to achieve for them and future generations.
“What we propose is not a departure from what city forefathers wanted when they set aside Higher Home Park and Central Park for the recreational enjoyment of local people.
“We will be faithful to this vision but offer a range of new indoor and enhanced outdoor amenities. Clearly in the 1920s no one would have anticipated a time when IMAX cinema technology would entertain film lovers from across the region, but we are also funding over £1.1 million of improvements to the surrounding parkland because we recognise that exercise in the fresh air is an enduring leisure activity for many.
"Plymouth deserves to have sporting and leisure facilities and hospitality services it can be proud of.“
Argyle Chief Executive Martyn Starnes said: "Revenue from the new grandstand is as vital to the progress of the club as what happens on the pitch.
"We need to improve our performances and attract more supporters to come to watch matches in better-quality facilities.
"Providing high-quality hospitality for our fans on match-day, and from functions during the rest of the year, will help generate the additional revenue that can be invested in a team to take us back up the leagues.
"It is a virtuous circle - greater performances, greater attendances, greater revenue, greater investment - which the club needs."
The plan is to start work in the Autumn of this year, which would ensure that the grandstand at Home Park remains opens until after the televised game against Portsmouth on Saturday, October 12.
For more information see www.higherhomepark.co.uk