A Grand Day

ARGYLE chairman James Brent has spoken of his excitement after Plymouth City Council gave the Greens the green light for the development of Home Park’s Mayflower grandstand.

A PCC planning committee meeting on Thursday afternoon resulted in permission being granted for the proposed development of Home Park and some of its surrounds. 

The development will provide Argyle with a refurbished grandstand; new players facilities; new offices and classroom; new bars; retail and ticketing functions; and a conference and banqueting facility. Seating capacity will be increased to around 18,600 in stage one and to more than 20,000 in stage two.

The wider development includes a new international size ice-rink; a hotel; a gym; offices; and restaurants. It is expected to employ 400 additional people once completed and more during the construction phase.

James paid tribute to his co-owner and vice-chairman Simon Hallett and Simon’s wife Jane who are funding the Grandstand and conferencing/banqueting facilities; to the club’s supporters who have been involved in the consultation process about the new grandstand; and staff at Home Park and his Akkeron Group colleagues and professional team who have helped the plans come to fruition.

James said: “This is a very exciting day, a very exciting conclusion.

"We still need to build it, but many thanks to all who have helped. There is great excitement, and we’re looking forward to 2018 and beyond.

“A great thanks to the Green Army Grandstand Working Group, to the staff who put time and effort in behind the scenes, and to the Akkeron and professional adviser teams. Also, thanks to the Members for approving it, and the Plymouth City Council planning department for the very diligent work that’s gone into it.

“It’s been a very long journey, and there have been ups and downs.

“We’ve had a lot of feedback and made a lot of changes. The broad scheme remains the same in terms of what the ambition is, but we have made improvements. With these things, consultation and constructive feedback make it better in the end.”

“We now have a consented plan for a great asset to the football club, and to the city of Plymouth, and we need to focus on delivering it.”