Manchester City Council

New stadium will be home win for community

Plans for a new £4.5 million football stadium in North Manchester with facilities which will benefit the wider community are moving forwards.

Members of Manchester City Council's Executive were updated on the progress of the ambitious scheme when they met on Wednesday 18 January.

A feasibility study into FC United's proposal to create a new home for the club - working in partnership with Moston Juniors FC - at Ronald Johnson Playing Fields in Moston has concluded that the site is suitable for development.

The project had already received planning permission on 27 October, subject to a number of conditions designed to maximise community benefit and manage any impact on parking and traffic being met.

The plan is to create a 5,000-capacity stadium with a full-sized artificial turf pitch and two junior-sized grass pitches for use by both clubs and the community.

It will also involve the creation of a new landscaped public space for community and school events and a clubhouse with multi-functional spaces, including educational facilities, for use by local groups and young people as well as supporters.

FC United working with Moston Juniors FC - one of the biggest amateur junior football clubs in Manchester with 21 affiliated teams - are also committed to increasing sporting participation in the area as well and doing other sports-based outreach work in the community.

Councillor Mike Amesbury, Executive Member for Culture and Leisure for Manchester City Council, said: "This important development will deliver significant social and economic benefits to the community in Moston and North Manchester.

"The partnership between FC United and Moston Juniors FC will not only result in around £4.5 million of new investment in the area. It will also create the basis for an excellent sporting hub in North Manchester - with three pitches and a clubhouse which will all be used by the community as well as the clubs - and a new public space. On top of this FC United will work with Moston Juniors FC and a range of other partner agencies to help increase the number of people taking part in sport in the area - helping to tackle health and other social issues."

FC United will now submit a final business plan to the Council and, subject to this being agreed, the lease currently held by Moston Juniors FC for the stadium site will be transferred to FC United as a 125-year lease.