PLAYING FIELDS: Sports ground facilities to be demolished
Dilapidated sports ground facilities in Wolverhampton look set to be demolished amid calls to reopen playing fields for the public.
City of Wolverhampton Council has submitted a planning application to take down the club house, changing rooms and pavilion at Wolverhampton United Sports Ground on Prestwood Road West.
The authority said the building were in a poor condition and were beyond economic repair. A spokesman added the facility is being marketed as playing fields with a number of parties expressing an interest.
Wolverhampton North East MP Jane Stevenson said it was vitally important the ground was reopened for the benefit of residents’ physical and mental health.
The ground was previously leased to Wolverhampton United until the club folded and a council spokesman said it has been vacant since July 2019.
He said: “The buildings are in very poor condition, no longer fit for purpose and beyond economical repair.
“The proposal to demolish has been put forward following extensive public consultation.
“The property is being marketed for retention as a playing filed. There are a number of interested parties. Plans from each party vary.
“There is a possibility that on-site built facilities (club house, stands etc.) could be created during the lease term. At this stage, it is too early to say.
“Planned new facilities will not be confirmed until conclusion of marketing and selection of a tenant.”
Jane Stevenson said: “Along with many residents in the area, I have been urging the council to press on with reopening the sports ground.
“Community assets such as this are vitally important, not just for physical health but for mental health too. There are so many benefits that sport can bring, particularly to children.
“I am pleased that the council put the lease out to tender, however I had hoped that they would have made more progress by now so that the local community can benefit from this facility.
“I know that there were a number of interested parties.
“Sadly the clubhouse and changing rooms cannot be retained due to the condition of the buildings, but the most important thing is getting sports activities back up and running at the ground.
“I am continuing to monitor developments and hope to see the ground reopened soon.”
Words: Gurdip Thandi, Local Democracy Reporter
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